Historical Football Kits

 

FIFA World Cup 1938

 

The decision taken in August 1936 to award the 1938 tournament to France rather than Argentina caused outrage in South America where it was believed the competition would alternate between continents. As a result Uruguay and Argentina refused to enter while Spain could not participate because of civil war. Both the hosts and title holders qualified automatically and of the remaining fourteen places, eleven were allocated to Europe, two to the Americas and one to Asia/Africa.

Although Austria qualified, their team withdrew after the March 1938 Anschluss under which Austria was incorporated into the Third Reich. For reasons unknown, the organising committee did not invite Latvia to take their place (they had finished behind Austria in qualifying) and instead left the place vacant.

The tournament was again organised as a simple knock-out competition, with extra-time and replays where necessary.

I am grateful to Glen Isherwood for sharing his research. Please contact me with corrections or additions.

1934 | World Cup Index | 1950

 

First Round
switzerland 1938 world cup

Switzerland

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germany 1938 world cup

Germany

Switzerland 1 Germany 1 (after extra time)

Parc des Princes, Paris (27,162)
4 June 1938

The best players from the Austrian Wunderteam were co-opted into the German side following the annexation of Austria and it was expected that this would transform Germany's prospects. These ambitions were frustrated by the underrated Swiss team who forced a replay after coming from behind.

The addition of red to the traditional German strip reflected the colours of the Nazi flag.

 

hungary world cup 1938 change kit

Hungary

dutch east indies 1938 world cup

Dutch East Indies

Hungary 6 Dutch East Indies 0

Vélodrome Municipal, Reims (9,000)
5 June 1938

Although they were overwhelmed by Hungary, the pride on the faces of the players representing the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia) as the anthems were played before the game was obvious. The team played in the colours of the Dutch royal house of Orange-Nassau according to unofficial sources. Hungary wore their iconic change shirts.

(Graham Brack, André Silva, YouTube)

 

Sweden v Austria (Sweden walk over)

Stade Gerland, Lyons
5 June 1938

Due to Austria's withdrawal Sweden were awarded a bye in the first round.

 

cuba 1938 world cup

Cuba

romania 1938 world cup

Romania

Cuba 3 Romania 3 (after extra time)

Stade Chapou, Toulouse (7,000)
5 June 1938

Romania took the lead in the 38th minute only for Socorro to equalise three minutes later. Cuba went ahead early in the second half but Baratki leveled the scores in the 68th minute. In extra-time, Cuba nosed ahead again, Magrina scoring his second three minutes after the kick-off but Dobai rescued the European side with another equaliser in the 101st minute.

(Greger Lindberg, Julio López, Marcelo Viana YouTube, André Silva)

 

france 1938 world cup

France

belgium 1938 world cup

Belgium

France 3 Belgium 1

Stade Olympique de Colombes, Paris (30,454)
5 June 1938

Veinante gave the hosts the perfect start, scoring in the first minute. Nicolas made it 2-0 15 minutes later and although Belgium pulled one back before half-time, Nicolas scored again in the second half to give France a comfortable win.

(Kevin Grandjean, André Silva)

 

italy 1938 world cup

Italy

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norway 1938 world cup

Norway

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Italy 2 Norway 1 (after extra time)

Stade Vélodrome, Marseille (19,000)
5 June 1938

The fascist salute given by the Italian team during the national anthems provoked widespread booing from spectators. Italy took the lead in the opening minutes and seemed on course until Arne Brustad scored a late equaliser to force extra time. Piola scored Italy's winner four minutes after the restart.

(Stein Jacobsen, Claudio Betta)

 

brazil 1938 world cup change kit

Brazil

poland 1938 world cup

Poland

Brazil 6 Poland 5 (after extra time)

Stade de la Meinau, Strasbourg (13,452)
5 June 1938

With Argentina and Uruguay boycotting the competition, South American hopes rested with Brazil who sent a gifted side that included Leonidas, the "Black Diamond." At half time, Brazil were 3-1 up but with seconds to go and the score standing at 4-3 Wilimovski equalised. In extra time Leonidas completed his hat-trick to make it 6-4 but the Poles still did not lie down, Wilimovski scoring his fourth goal three minutes into the second period of extra time. Brazil then held on for victory in a remarkable match. Some clever research by Paweł Szczepański has established that Brazil changed into their blue training shirts.

(Paweł Szczepański, André Silva)

 

czechoslovakia 1938 world cup change kit

Czechoslovakia

netherlands 1938 world cup

Netherlands

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Czechoslovakia 3 Netherlands 0 (after extra time)

Stade Cavée Verte, Le Havre (11,000)
5 June 1938

Determined Dutch resistance held off a strong Czechoslovak team but in extra time they buckled and conceded three goals.

(André Silva)

 

Replays
switzerland 1938 world cup

Switzerland

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germany 1938 world cup

Germany

Switzerland 4 Germany 2

Parc des Princes, Paris (20,265)
9 June 1938

Against all expectations, Switzerland knocked Germany out of the competition in a thrilling match that they won after being 2-0 down.

 

cuba 1938 world cup

Cuba

romania 1938 world cup

Romania

Cuba 2 Romania 1

Stade Chapou, Toulouse (8,000)
9 June 1938

Dobai, who had come to Romania's rescue in their first meeting with Cuba put his side ahead towards the end of the first half. After the break, two quick goals from Socorro and Fernandez put Cuba in front and this time they held on to their advantage to record a notable win.

 

Quarter-Finals
hungary 1938 world cup

Hungary

switzerland 1938 world cup

Switzerland

Hungary 2 Switzerland 0

Stade Victor Boucquey, Lille (14,000)
12 June 1938

Goals in each half from György Sárosi and Gyula Zsengellér were enough for Hungary to see off Switzerland.

(André Silva)

 

sweden 1938 world cup

Sweden

cuba 1938 world cup

Cuba

Sweden 8 Cuba 0

Stade du Fort Carré, Antibes (6,846)
12 June 1938

Sweden were 4-0 up at half-time and coasting. As Cuba tired towards the end of the match, Sweden scored another four in the last ten minutes. Tore Keller and Gustav Wetterström both scored hat-tricks.

(Andreas Nilsson - Swedish FA, Greger Lindberg)

 

italy world cup 1930 black kit v france

Italy

france 1938 world cup

France

Italy 3 France 1

Stade Olympique de Colombes, Paris (58,455)
12 June 1938

On the instructions of Benito Mussolini, Italy wore an all-black strip in this match. An early Italian goal was immediately cancelled out and at half-time the scores were level. In the second half Silvio Piola scored twice to give the title holders victory over the hosts.

(Kevin Grandjean)

 

brazil 1938 world cup

Brazil

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czechoslovakia 1938 world cup

Czechoslovakia

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Brazil 1 Czechoslovakia 1 (after extra time)

Parc Lescure, Bordeaux (22,021)
12 June 1938

Faced with strong opposition, Brazil decided to turn this match into a kicking contest, which became infamous as the "Battle of Bordeaux." Zeze Procopia was sent off in the 14th minute for lunging at Nejedlý, who was taken to hospital with a broken leg, an injury that ended his international career. The match ended with an all-out brawl resulting in a Brazilian defender and a Czech forward being sent off. Czechoslovakia's goalkeeper, played through extra-time with a broken arm.

 

Replay
brazil 1938 world cup

Brazil

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czechoslovakia 1938 world cup

Czechoslovakia

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Brazil 2 Czechoslovakia 1

Parc Lescure, Bordeaux (18,141)
14 June 1938

Following the violence of the first encounter between the sides, fifteen enforced changes were made to the teams while Czechoslovakia were without their finest players. The result was a foregone conclusion.

 

Semi-Finals
hungary 1938 world cup

Hungary

sweden 1938 world cup

Sweden

Hungary 5 Sweden 1

Parc des Princes, Paris (14,800)
16 June 1938

Having had a bye and an easy tie against Cuba, Sweden crumbled once matched with a really good side. Remarkably, they scored first after just 35 seconds. Zsengellér scored a hat-trick for Hungary.

 

italy 1938 world cup

Italy

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brazil 1938 world cup

Brazil

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Italy 2 Brazil 1

Stade Vélodrome, Marseille (33,000)
16 June 1938

In an act of astonishing arrogance, Brazil's coach decided to rest his two key strikers, Leonidas and Roberto and his team was punished as a result. Colaussi and Meazza put Italy 2-0 up in the second half, Romeu scoring a consolation goal three minutes before the final whistle.

(Claudio Betta)

 

Third Place Match
brazil 1938 world cup

Brazil

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sweden 1938 world cup

Sweden

Brazil 4 Sweden 2

Parc Lescure, Bordeaux (12,000)
19 June 1938

Sweden took their chances in the first half and were 2-0 up as half-time approached. Romeu reduced the deficit just before half-time and in the second half, Brazil ran riot, scoring three more without reply.

 

Final
italy 1938 world cup

Italy

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hungary 1938 world cup

Hungary

Italy 4 Hungary 2

Stade Olympique de Colombes, Paris (45,124)
19 June 1938

The final pitched the physically aggressive approach of the Italians against the more skilful tactics of Hungary. Colaussi's early goal for Italy was immediately cancelled out by Pál Titkos but by half-time, Italy were 3-1 up. In the second half, Italy defended robustly and although Hungary reduced Italy's lead in the 70th minute, Silvio Piola scored his second with eight minutes left.

By retaining the world championship, the Italian coach, Vittorio Pozzi entered the pantheon of all time great managers.

 
1934 | World Cup Index | 1950