Germany mourns Karl-Heinz Schnellinger!

German football mourns the death of former international Karl-Heinz Schnellinger, who has passed away at the age of 85.

He died in Milan, Italy, his home for nearly 50 years after spending the most successful spell of his club career at AC Milan.

Schnellinger made his breakthrough for 1. FC Köln in the late 1950s and became a German champion in 1962, when he also received the Footballer of the Year award. The defender, who was a popular team-mate in all the sides he played for, then opted for a transfer to Italy and became one of the first-ever Germans to play abroad.

Schnellinger joined AS Roma but spent his first season in Italy on loan at AC Mantua, before returning to Roma and excelling at both clubs. ‘Carlo il biondo’ (Karl the blond), as he was often called in Italy, was then signed by AC Milan, where he would end up winning four domestic championships, one Coppa Italia, two European Cup Winners’ Cup titles and the European Champion Clubs’ Cup.

A major success with the German national team eluded him, however. He was a FIFA World Cup finalist in 1966 and scored his only goal for the national team in the 1970 World Cup semi-finals, when Germany lost one of the most memorable matches of all time after extra time against Italy. Schnellinger ended his career at Tennis Borussia Berlin and moved back to Italy immediately after retiring from playing.

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