Say the name Harald Schumacher to a football fan of a certain generation and they will likely wince and grimace as they recall the events of a World cup Semi Final between France and West Germany in 1982.
An exciting 3-3 draw took place, yet it was the staggering controversy that unravelled during a collision which occurred between Patrick Battiston, the French defender and Schumacher the West German Goalkeeper. Collision is labelling it rather kindly, perhaps annihilation best describes the incident - as the French player found himself one on one with the opposition keeper. Battiston managed to get to the ball but to no avail as his shot is sent wide of the net, however he is immediately crushed to the floor as he collides with the oncoming Schumacher.
When most collisions on the football field are inadvertently accidental, resulting in both players floored and with little fault of either person - this one was different. Schumacher, lept with considerable height as he flew through the air. Battiston pokes the shot wide, yet he cannot escape the German as he swivels to one side and crushes the frenchman in the face. Schumacher lands on his feet, Battisiton is knocked out cold lying on the ground. The German simply plods back to his goal and awaits the restart to the match, without any inclination to check on the health of Battiston.
Even more bizarrely, the Dutch Referee in charge of the game provides no yellow card, or even a free-kick. The game is simply carried on, as the poor Patrick Battiston is stretchered off. Laying on the ground unconscious with teeth knocked out, Battiston later slipped into a coma and needed surgery on a damaged vertabrae while Schumacher gets off, unpunished. Germany went on to win on penalties that night, further piling on the misery to France and Harald Schumacher reveals he went to apologise in person a few days later, which Patrick Battiston duly accepted.
We recommend finding a clip of this on Youtube if you've never seen it - it's unbelievable.