Rinus Michels' revered Holland side were regarded as the best team at the tournament with their silky and dynamic 'Total Football' taking the game by storm. Holland took the lead before West Germany had even touched the ball.
A patient build-up saw Johan Cruyff burst into the area and catch the opposition unawares with Uli Hoeness bringing him down as he closed in on goal a minute into the match. Midfielder Johan Neeskens stepped up to convert beyond Sepp Maier to give the Oranje a dream start.
Their joy did not last long, however, as English referee Jack Taylor awarded West Germany a penalty which Paul Breitner converted and Gerd Muller scored a winner two minutes before half-time.