Fun Fact: Highest Scoring World Cup Game - Austria v Switzerland 1954

Fun Fact: Highest Scoring World Cup Game - Austria v Switzerland 1954
Our World Cup Fun Facts provide insightful knowledge about past editions of the world’s biggest competition. For information about this year’s competition, you can read The Definite Team Guide for World Cup 2018 powered by Soccerex and Totum Sport.

On June 26th 1954, in the blazing 40°C heat, Austria and Switzerland made history as they set a World Cup record that still stands. The “Hitzeschlacht von Lausanne” (battle in the heat of Lausanne) as the match came to be known, holds the record for the highest-scoring World Cup fixture in history. 

Host nation Switzerland struck first, as Robert Ballaman rifled the ball into the roof of the net from outside the box in the 16th minute. Striker Josef Hugi added another goal one minute after the first, and scored again in the 19th minute, putting Switzerland 3-0 up before 20 minutes had past. This lead did not last long however, as Austria scored in the 25th, 26th and 27th minutes, to level the score in a bizarrely exciting first half an hour.

The first half’s antics were not finished there, as Austria scored in the 32nd, and 34th minute to go 5-3 up. 39 minutes into the game, Switzerland brought one back. Austria were awarded a penalty in the 42nd minute which was missed by Alfred Corner the kick taker. With nine goals in the first half, this is another record - unsurprisingly - for the highest scoring half in World Cup history.

Nine minutes after half time, Theodor Wagner completed his hat-trick for Austria, putting them up 6-4. This hat-trick was mirrored by Josef Hugi who scored his third of the game in the 60th minute to put Switzerland back to a one-goal deficit. The final goal of the highly entertaining game came from Erich Probst, of Austria who went on to win the game 7-5 in a timeless thriller.

The 1954 World Cup saw four of the top ten highest scoring matches in World Cup history, as Hungary beat Germany and South Korea 8-3 and 9-0 respectively, and Germany beat Turkey 7-2. The most recent entry into the top 10 came from the 2014 World Cup as Germany memorably destroyed Brazil 7-1 in the semi finals.

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