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When East Germany met West and caused one of the greatest World Cup shocks

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Arriving at Hamburg airport in their matching light grey jackets, green shirt and yellow ties, the East Germany squad and management team were all smiles.

The departure to their camp in Quickborn was delayed when a replacement bus needed to be found as the one emblazoned with “DDR” (Deutsche Demokratische Republik) and flag designated to pick them up went ‘missing’.

Given West Germany didn’t even recognise the DDR as a proper country — the national tabloid Bild even referred to the East in inverted commas — this was hardly a surprise.

No doubt the slight was documented in forensic detail by one of tourists.At their base for the first group stage, agents of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany’s Ministry for State Security, better known as the Stasi, among the entourage relaxed their surveillance a touch, presumably overawed by the chance to sample some of the pleasures of the West.

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