Karl-Heinz Schnellinger

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Karl-Heinz Schnellinger
Karl-Heinz Schnellinger.jpg
Karl-Heinz Schnellinger (1968)
birthday March 31, 1939
place of birth DürenGerman Empire
size 180 cm
position Defender
Years station
1949-1956 SG Düren 99
Years station Games (goals) 1
1956-1958 SG Düren 99
1958-1963 1. FC Cologne 131 (8)
1963-1964 AC Mantua 33 (2)
1964-1965 AS Roma 29 (1)
1965-1974 AC Milan 222 (0)
1974-1975 Tennis Borussia Berlin 19 (0)
National team
Years selection Games (goals)
1957 DFB youth selection 4 (0)
1957 Germany amateurs 1 (0)
1958-1971 Germany 47 (1)
1 Only league games are given.

Karl-Heinz Schnellinger (born March 31, 1939 in Düren ) is a former German football player .

The defender was one of the first German professionals to move abroad. In Italy he won all major international titles with AC Milan . With the German national team he took part in four world championships (1958, 1962, 1966, 1970) and reached the semi-finals twice and the final once.

Career in the club

Time in Germany

At the age of ten Schnellinger joined the SG Düren 99 club , for whose senior team he ran in the 2nd League West in the 1957/58 season and scored six goals in 21 games. He was nominated for the youth national team in the spring of 1957 and took part in the UEFA youth tournament in Spain in April 1957 . There he formed the German defender couple with Fritz Pott . At the latest after his international match on October 12, 1957 in the dress of the amateur national team against England at the side of defender colleague Willi Gerdau , he was recommended for higher tasks by Helmut Schön , the then assistant to national coach Sepp Herberger .

After the 1958 World Cup , Schnellinger, who gave up his school education in Obersekunda in favor of football and successfully completed a commercial apprenticeship, moved to 1. FC Köln , where he was a fixture in the defense. Under coach Péter Szabó he made his debut on November 2, 1958, in the away game against Rot-Weiß Oberhausen , in the Oberliga West . In the 1-0 defeat, he and Georg Stollenwerk formed the defender pair in the World Cup system . At the end of the round he had completed 19 league games, and Cologne reached the final round of the German football championship with the runner-up . In his first final round in 1959, he played all six games; the southern champion Eintracht Frankfurt turned out to be too strong, he also won the German championship. From 1960 to 1963 Schnellinger won four championships in the Oberliga West in a row with President Franz Kremer's team . He experienced his first final of the German championship on June 25, 1960 with a 2-3 defeat against Hamburger SV. With the "Billy Goats" he won in 1962 under coach Zlatko Čajkovski the German football championship in 1961/62 - in the final Cologne defeated 1. FC Nuremberg 4: 0th In 1963 Cologne was again in the final , but lost 3-1 to Borussia Dortmund . Schnellinger scored the consolation goal for FC. In 1962 he was voted Germany's Footballer of the Year by sports journalists . In the election for European Footballer of the Year , in which defenders are rarely found in the front positions, he took third place in 1962 and sixth in 1963. After the last round of the old first-class football league in 1962/63 - Schnellinger had completed 131 league games with eight goals, as well as 30 final round games (1 goal) for 1. FC Cologne from 1958 to 1963 - he became a professional in Serie A in Italy .

Schnellinger was one of the world's best defensive players for over a decade and can be counted among the greats in the field. He was strong in the ball, had running ability, a good basic technique for building the game, absolute class in defensive duels and was also a brilliant tactician.

When the English football legend Stanley Matthews said goodbye in 1965 at the age of 50, he invited the top European players. The famous right winger Schnellinger, whom he considered to be the best left defender, chose himself as his direct opponent. The selection from the continent beat the English national team 6: 4.

Time in Italy

Schnellinger moved after the runner-up championship in 1963 for a transfer fee of 1.12 million DM in the Italian Serie A to AS Roma . From the transfer sum, he received a hand money of 300,000 DM and was initially loaned to AC Mantova for one season . After Schnellinger had played a strong season in Mantua and brilliantly introduced himself to Serie A, he returned to AS Roma, where he played the 1964/65 season. But soon the top club AC Milan became aware of the blonde and signed him immediately. At Milan he played with many stars ( Gianni Rivera , Kurt Hamrin , Pierino Prati , Giovanni Trapattoni and Roberto Rosato ), developed tactically in the " Land of Catenaccio " and was considered one of the best defenders in the world.

Schnellinger swam on a wave of success with the traditional Lombard club: 1967 Coppa Italia , 1968 Scudetto and the European Cup Winners' Cup with a 2-0 win over Hamburger SV . A year later, Milan beat the Ajax Amsterdam team 4-1 in the final of the European Cup . This was the first time that a team had won both major European football competitions. In 1969 the World Cup was added. In 1972 and 1973 AC Milan won the Coppa Italia twice and in 1973 the European Cup Winners' Cup for the second time , but Schnellinger was not used in the final against Leeds United (1-0). In 1974 he was in a European Cup final for the last time. The 1. FC Magdeburg , cup winners of the GDR , thwarted a successful end to his career.

In Germany again

Shortly afterwards ( season 1974/75 ) Karl-Heinz Schnellinger signed with the Bundesliga promoted Tennis Borussia Berlin . This was considered a special transfer coup, on the one hand because of his career to date, on the other hand because he had not played a game in the Bundesliga. The experienced Schnellinger was immediately elected captain . The 36-year-old was no longer at the peak of his performance and only played 19 games for the Berlin team. With 89 goals against TeBe had the weakest defense in the league and could not prevent immediate relegation. Schnellinger, father of three daughters, ended his active career and settled in Italy .

After the career

There he lives in Segrate near Milan . After his sporting career, he worked as a general agent for fitted kitchens in Milan.

Career in the national team

Solari, Más, Tilkowski, Schnellinger and Schulz (Germany-Argentina, World Cup 1966, England)

Schnellinger played his first international match for a DFB selection on March 31, 1957 in Oberhausen in the 4-1 victory of the DFB youth team against England. He then played three more international matches at the UEFA youth tournament in Spain. The games against the selection of Hungary on April 14, Poland on April 16 and Spain on April 18, 1957 ended in a draw (2: 2, 2: 2, 1: 1). For the amateur national team , he was only used on October 12, 1957 in Ilford in the 3-2 win over England.

On April 2, 1958 (two days after his 19th birthday), the defender made his debut in the senior team . “Schnellinger passed his exam with flying colors. With him there is no hesitation, no hesitation. Uncompromisingly he destroys all attacks “, wrote the press after the game against Czechoslovakia (3: 2).

Herberger took Schnellinger after a season in the II. Division West with 21 appearances and six goals for SG Düren 99 in the same year to the World Cup in Sweden , where Schnellinger was supposed to gain international experience, and used him in two games: in the Preliminary round against Czechoslovakia (2: 2) and in the rather insignificant game for third place against France (3: 6). The debutant was particularly taken with Fritz Walter, whom he admired and looked up to. The "great Fritz" was the ideal footballer for the boy from Düren. Its discoverer was the then Herberger assistant Helmut Schön, who became aware of Schnellinger in the Middle Rhine selection.

In 1962 Karl-Heinz Schnellinger went to the World Cup in Chile under different conditions . As the reigning German champion, he was now a fixture in Herberger's system. Although the German team did not get past the quarter-finals, he made a strong impression as the German defense had to accept only two goals in four games. Germany's journalists then voted him “ Footballer of the Year ” and he was a member of the all-star team at the World Cup.

At the 1966 World Cup in England , Schnellinger, Helmut Haller and Albert Brülls, two other Italian legionnaires were in the German squad, which brought more quality to the team, which was completed by young stars such as Franz Beckenbauer , Wolfgang Overath and Lothar Emmerich . Germany was one of the strongest teams in the tournament, not least because of their defense, which only had to concede two goals before reaching the finals. But the final at the legendary Wembley Stadium went to hosts England after a dramatic game 2: 4 afterwards .

At his fourth World Cup in Mexico in 1970 , Schnellinger organized the German defense. His only goal, which he scored in 47 games for the national team, was the equalizer in the semifinals against Italy . On June 17, 1970 in the World Cup semi-final match between Germany and Italy at the Aztec Stadium in Mexico City in front of over 100,000 spectators, Helmut Schön's team had been down 0-1 since the 8th minute. It was already the 91st minute. Jürgen Grabowski crossed from the left. Karl-Heinz Schnellinger straddled with the right: 1: 1. This led the German commentator Ernst Huberty to the cult phrase “Of all things Schnellinger ...” because Schnellinger had been playing in Italy for years. This was followed by a spectacular extension that is still famous today. Italy won 4: 3 afterwards, and this is still called the “game of the century ”. Germany finally finished third (1-0 win over Uruguay ).

On February 17, 1971 Schnellinger completed his last international game in a 1-0 win over Albania and ended his career in the national team after 13 years and 47 games, 17 of them at world championships.

On July 30, 1966, he received the Silver Bay Leaf .



Personal awards


  • 47 international matches; 1 goal for Germany
  • 1 amateur international match
  • 1st National League
19 games tennis Borussia Berlin
131 games; 8 goals 1. FC Cologne
  • Final round of the German championship
30 games; 1 goal 1. FC Cologne
3 games 1. FC Köln
  • West Cup
11 games; 3 goals 1. FC Cologne
4 games 1. FC Köln


  • Hardy Grüne , Lorenz Knieriem: Encyclopedia of German League Football. Volume 8: Player Lexicon 1890–1963. AGON Sportverlag, Kassel 2006, ISBN 3-89784-148-7 , p. 345.
  • Willy Thelen: Karl-Heinz Schnellinger - give me the ball . Copress, Munich 1966.
  • Champions. 100 great footballers and their successes. Gondrom-Verlag, Bindlach 2004, ISBN 3-8112-2342-9 , p. 164 ff.
  • Michael Horn: Lexicon of international soccer stars . Verlag Die Werkstatt, Göttingen 2004, ISBN 3-89533-466-9 , pp. 232-233.
  • Helmut Sohre: Football magic . The great moments of the great players. Limpert Verlag, Bad Homburg 1983, ISBN 3-7853-1515-9 , pp. 131-138.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ German Sports Club for Football Statistics (DSFS): Football in West Germany 1952–1958. Berlin 2012. p. 240.
  2. "WE CANNOT USE INDIVIDUALISTS", Spiegel dated June 8, 1970
  3. ^ Matthias Kropp: Germany's great soccer teams, part 10: 1. FC Cologne. AGON Sportverlag. Kassel 1997. ISBN 3-928562-96-7 , p. 122/123.
  4. ^ Klaus Querengässer: The German football championship. Part 2: 1948–1963 (= AGON Sportverlag statistics. Vol. 29). AGON Sportverlag, Kassel 1997, ISBN 3-89609-107-7 , p. 123.
  5. Christian Karn, Reinhard Rehberg: Encyclopedia of German League Football. Volume 9: Player Lexicon 1963-1994. Bundesliga, regional league, 2nd league. AGON Sportverlag, Kassel 2012, ISBN 978-3-89784-214-4 , p. 451.
  6. Dirk Innschuld, Frederic Latz: With the billy goat on the chest. All players, all coaches, all officials of 1. FC Köln. Publishing house Die Werkstatt. Göttingen 2013. ISBN 978-3-7307-0047-1 . P. 323
  7. ^ Matthias Arnhold: Karl-Heinz Schnellinger - Matches and Goals in Bundesliga . Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. April 18, 2013. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  8. ^ "Birthdays", Sport-Bild dated March 31, 1993, p. 56.
  9. Kicker Almanach 1987 - pp. 115 and 381 (Heimann / Jens - Copress Verlag Munich) - ISBN 3-7679-0245-1 .
  10. Helmut Sohre. P. 133.
  11. ^ Matthias Arnhold: Karl-Heinz Schnellinger - International Appearances . Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. December 4, 2004. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  12. ^ Information given to the Bundestag by the Federal Government on September 29, 1973 - Printed matter 7/1040 - Annex 3, pages 54 ff., Here page 59.