The Poles succeeded in canceling the playoffs with Russia. They have done similar tricks in the past.
After the ostentatious refusal of the Poles to meet with the Russian team, there is practically no sympathy for this team in our country. Of course, it is a pity: while our former opponents are preparing for the decisive match for the ticket to the Qatar World Cup with the Swedish team, we are forced to look at this celebration of life from the outside.
Interestingly, this is not the first time that the Poles have tricked the selection for the main tournament in the world.
In one case, the team apparently did not want to be embarrassed!
The minister was deprived of the opportunity for the World Cup
There were many territorial disputes in Europe in the first half of the 20th century. One of them erupted between Poland and Czechoslovakia over a land called Cieszyn Silesia. In the early 1920s, most of this territory came under the control of the Czechoslovak government (not without the help of the Red Army). The Poles, of course, were evil, because they considered the area their own. In fact, they had virtually no national supremacy there.
By the end of the 1930s, the conflict had somewhat subsided. It seemed that the political situation should not affect football. The Poles even welcomed the Czechoslovaks at home in the qualifying match for the 1934 World Cup.
But the Poles suddenly refused to go visit their opponents. It was a decision by Secretary of State Jozef Beck. The team had to submit and accept defeat. Czechoslovakia entered the Italian World Cup, which opened the tournament, taking second place. However, national pride was hurt in every case. Losing an opponent with principles in your own field, and even without a chance for revenge, is clearly a blow below the belt.
Are you afraid of another crash?
20 years later, Poland lost another World Cup. This time the situation in the world was completely different. In 1950, the world was preparing for the first post-war World Cup, which was to be held in Uruguay. Poland did not even apply for that tournament – there were no resources, the country was in ruins. And now the Poles were going to go to the next world championship – in Switzerland. They went, but they never went.
The qualifying group consisted, in fact, of two teams – Poland and Hungary. Iceland was supposed to be there, but the FIFA decision did not allow it. Such a thing was just a nightmare. First, the Hungarians at that time were considered almost the most formidable power in the world. Gustav Szebes’s team stated its own particular style – a prototype of total football with a super-aggressive 3-5-2 formation. Well, do not forget that the legendary Ferenc Puskas and many other representatives of the “golden” generation played in this team.
Secondly, the Poles then had terrible statistics in the matches against the Hungarians. And since 1948, they have lost steadily to their opponents in the selection with a disastrous score: 2: 6, 2: 8, 2: 5, 0: 6, 1: 5. Hungary, on the other hand, was in the middle of its famous unbeaten streak, which ended just in the 1954 World Cup final, where the excellent team of Semba lost unexpectedly to Germany.
But this is something else. As soon as they found out that Hungary was their opponent, Poland refused to participate in the World Cup. Officially, this seemed to be due to post-war economic problems, such as in 1950. However, the public was more inclined to believe that the Poles simply did not want to embarrass themselves, realizing that they had no chance against the Hungarian machine. Otherwise, why did you have to apply for the qualification if you were not originally going to participate?
Football was not the main thing for post-war Poland at the time, but years later the Polish public made that decision negatively, accusing their team of cowardice.
2022 World Cup: Will FIFA help?
And now Poland is once again at the center of a strange football incident. But this time – on the other side of the roadblocks. The opponents are strong Swedes, but the Poles themselves no longer flog boys, as they did when they feared the mighty Hungarians. Today’s team does not know principles, because it has great and just very good quality players.
World Cup 2022. Qualifying Tournament. The final. Poland – Sweden
The only pity is that this team (if it beats the Swedes) will go to the World Cup finals not on a sports basis, but as a result of their own hysteria. 68 years after their voluntary refusal to qualify for the World Cup, the Poles showed cowardice again, not wanting to play against Russia. Although our team is not as bad as the Hungary of the 1950s.
Therefore, the vast majority of Russians will support the Swedes.