International friendlies

Overview of international friendlies played in the period 1988-1990.

April 1988
13.04.1988 Bulgaria 1-1 East Germany
Bulgaria finish strongly to claim well deserved draw.

May 1988
17.05.1988 Hungary 0-4 Austria
Marko’s hat-trick saw to that counter-attacking happy Austria won at a canter.

August 1988
04.08.1988 Finland 1-1 Bulgaria
Low-intensity match where two goals in quick second half succession made sure that the stadium record crowd avoided a scoreless draw.

07.08.1988 Iceland 2-3 Bulgaria
Bulgaria complete their comeback from two goals down through injury time winner in a seeworthy affair.

17.08.1988 Finland 0-0 Soviet Union
It is dull, it is anemic, it is goalless. But Finland can be pleased to have shut out the USSR.

September 1988
14.09.1988 Spain 1-2 Yugoslavia
Impressive victory on the road for slick and industrious Yugoslavia, with Spain falling to defeat in Luis Suárez’ first game in charge.

October 1988
12.10.1988 Sweden 0-0 Portugal
Played out in difficult conditions on a cut pitch and heavy rain. The goalless score almost inevitable with Portugal reluctant to go forward and Sweden unimaginative.

19.10.1988 Italy 2-1 Norway
The Italians get the win in their first preparation game ahead of the World Cup, though they fail to fire on more than a couple of cylinders, and they need a penalty and a tremendous Ferri free-kick to seal the victory against a limited Norway team. All goals during the first half, whilst the second half was more or less a stalemate.

November 1988
16.11.1988 Italy 1-0 Netherlands
Italy claim the win in a good-natured friendly thanks to a fine diagonal strike by Vialli just before the half-time break. However, the Netherlands had been on the front foot for much of the game, easily edging possession, although they had struggled to unlock the home defence after a few first half opportunities. Stand-in ‘keeper Tacconi had saved miraculously from van Basten, and down the other end, Ferri had hit the underside of the bar with a header. Fine work-out for both teams.

December 1988
22.12.1988 Italy 2-0 Scotland
Italy were looking to continue building their momentum, and they rarely needed to accelerate beyond second gear for this decent win against a somewhat weakened Scottish outfit. Both goals came after the break, though the penalty which saw the breakthrough looked a dubious one. The two Italian ‘keepers had a single save to make between them, while Goram did well for Scotland down the other end.

January 1989
25.01.1989 Greece 1-2 Portugal
As Portugal were preparing for their huge qualifier at home to Belgium just three weeks later, they produced a fine display to beat Greece in Athens. However, they should have won by a greater margin, as they produced several opportunities which Greece ‘keeper Oikonomopoulos often did well to thwart. There were a number of fine individual displays by the visitors, while the hosts were less impressive, both individually and collectively.

February 1989
07.02.1989 Republic of Ireland 0-0 France
The teams play out a goalless draw in difficult conditions on a heavy pitch. France stood well up to the physical Irish.

21.02.1989 Bulgaria 1-2 Soviet Union

22.02.1989 Greece 4-2 Norway
A mad 13 minutes spell early in the second half saw an uncalled for amount of goals in a scrappy friendly where neither defence was on top.

22.02.1989 Italy 1-0 Denmark

March 1989
08.03.1989 Greece 3-2 East Germany
Frantic at times as Greece hold on to seal win against somewhat uninspired visitors.

22.03.1989 Bulgaria 1-2 West Germany

22.03.1989 Netherlands 2-0 Soviet Union
Game of two halves in which Holland are lucky to triumph.

25.03.1989 Austria 0-1 Italy

29.03.1989 Greece 0-1 Turkey

29.03.1989 Romania 1-0 Italy
Fine victory after impressive first half performance. Italy lacked creativity.

April 1989
04.04.1989 Hungary 3-0 Switzerland

05.04.1989 Greece 1-4 Yugoslavia
When in the right mindset, Yugoslavia simply had too much know-how for plucky hosts.

11.04.1989 Austria 1-2 Czechoslovakia

22.04.1989 Italy 1-1 Uruguay
Draw a suitable outcome as both teams struggled to create opportunities.

26.04.1989 Italy 4-0 Hungary
Italy simply too strong for poorly organised Hungary.

May 1989
27.05.1989 Scotland 0-2 England

June 1989
08.06.1989 Brazil 4-0 Portugal
Brazil switched on when they wanted to and easily over-powered a depleted Portugal in friendly to mark the 75th anniversary of their FA.

14.06.1989 Denmark 6-0 Sweden
Sweden the better team early on until the floodgates opened.

16.06.1989 Sweden 2-1 Brazil
Low-paced game where Sweden’s greater collective effort sees them get a deserved win against a lack-lustre Brazil.

21.06.1989 Switzerland 1-0 Brazil
The Swiss score from one of the softest penalties you’ll see, Brazil have good goal ruled out for offside. Fortunate home team.

August 1989
16.08.1989 Sweden 2-4 France
Heavy rain stopped the game for several minutes in the second half, and France scored four times after teams reappeared.

September 1989
05.09.1989 Poland 3-0 Greece

06.09.1989 Republic of Ireland 1-1 West Germany
Draw an ok result in a match of two halves, where few openings had been created on either side.

20.09.1989 Italy 4-0 Bulgaria
Italy turn on the style in a Roberto Baggio inspired performance to run out comfortable winners despite early scare from the visitors.

20.09.1989 Spain 1-0 Poland
A full-strength Spain do not always have it all their own way against a somewhat b-string Poland, though their win is deserved. Míchel’s left foot effort separating the sides. The match saw a total of five debutants.

20.09.1989 Yugoslavia 3-0 Greece
Greece are no match for a home side which decided to rest on its laurels after an imaginative opening quarter of an hour.

October 1989
14.10.1989 Italy 0-1 Brazil
Brazil strike through wonder free-kick late on to claim prestigeous friendly win.

November 1989
11.11.1989 Italy 1-0 Algeria
‘Keeper El-Hadi came to Algeria’s rescue on a few occasions, but Italy’s dominance finally told as substitute Serena finished off Baggio’s cross.

14.11.1989 Brazil 0-0 Yugoslavia
Bore goalless draw.

15.11.1989 England 0-0 Italy
Both have goals disallowed, but England much the stronger against disappointing Italy, yet there’s no goals to show for their superiority.

December 1989
13.12.1989 England 2-1 Yugoslavia
Two goals from ‘captain Marvel’ wins it for the hosts against a somewhat tame Yugoslavia.

20.12.1989 Netherlands 0-1 Brazil
A makeshift Dutch side are unable to resist a strong Brazil outfit.

21.12.1989 Italy 0-0 Argentina
Hardfought battle deservedly finishes with no goals.

February 1990
04.02.1990 Costa Rica 0-2 Uruguay

21.02.1990 Spain 1-0 Czechoslovakia

21.02.1990 Netherlands 0-0 Italy

24.02.1990 USA 1-3 Soviet Union

28.02.1990 France 2-1 West Germany

March 1990
28.03.1990 Scotland 1-0 Argentina

28.03.1990 Soviet Union 2-1 Netherlands

28.03.1990 Spain 2-3 Austria

28.03.1990 Hungary 1-3 France

April 1990
25.04.1990 England 4-2 Czechoslovakia

25.04.1990 Republic of Ireland 1-0 Soviet Union

25.04.1990 Scotland 0-1 East Germany

May 1990
03.05.1990 Austria 1-1 Argentina

13.05.1990 Brazil 3-3 East Germany

16.05.1990 Republic of Ireland 1-1 Finland

19.05.1990 Scotland 1-1 Poland

26.05.1990 West Germany 1-0 Czechoslovakia

26.05.1990 Yugoslavia 0-1  Spain

27.05.1990 Turkey 0-0 Republic of Ireland

30.05.1990 Austria 3-2 Netherlands

June 1990
02.06.1990 Belgium 3-0 Mexico

02.06.1990 Tunisia 1-1 England