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Results 1950-1955                        Page Last Updated 17 February 2021


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301 vs. Spain

Wednesday, 18 May 1955
End-of-Season Tour Match

Spain 1 England 1 [0-1]

Estadio Santiago Bernabéu, Chamartín, Madrid
Kick-off (CEST & BST): 5.30pm
Attendance: 125,000 (sold-out).  Receipts: over £50,000

unknown kicked off  

[1-1] José Rial 65
 put away a loose ball from 8 yards after Edwards tackled Mauri in the area and Sillett failed to clear
[0-1] Roy Bentley 38
superb 20-yard strike out of the 'keepers reach following an Edwards lay-off
Match Summary
Spain Party
England Party

Match Summary

Officials from Italy




Referee (black blazer) - Riccardo Pieri
x (-).

Linesmen -

The FIFA ruling of allowing a substitute to replace an injured player prior to the 44th minute, and a goalkeeper at any time, is in place.
The Spanish match programmes for the home matches against England in 1980 and 1987 both call it the Estádio Chamartin when detailing this game.  A history of the Spanish national team calls it the Bernabéu at that time. Simon Inglis' The Football Grounds of Europe says 'the name Santiago Bernabéu was officially adopted in January 1955'; and above all the cover of the actual match programme for the 1955 game calls it the Estadio Santiago Bernabéu.

Spain Team



No official ranking system established;
ELO rating 12th
Colours: Red collared jerseys, blue shorts, black socks with red/yellow hooped tops.
Capt: Antonio Ramallets Manager: Don Benito Díaz Iraola, 57 (17 April 1898).
appointed for the summer matches.
second and final match, W 0 - D 1 - L 1 - F 2 - A 3.
Spain Lineup
  Ramallets Simón, Antonio 30 4 July 1924 G FC Barcelona 15 20ᵍᵃ
2 Matito Domínguez, Román 28 2 February 1927 RB Real Valladolid CF SAD 1 0
3 Campanal
González del Río, Marcelino Vaquero
23 13 February 1932 LB Sevilla FC SAD 5 0
4 Mauri
Lauzirika, Mauricio Ugartemendia
21 26 April 1934 RHB Athletic Club 1 0
5 Garay Vecino, Jesús 24 10 September 1930 CHB Athletic Club 3 0
6 Zárraga Martín, José María 24 15 August 1930 LHB Real Madrid CF 1 0
7 Mañó Villagrasa, Daniel 23 27 February 1932 OR Valencia CF 1 0
8 Pérez-Payá Soler, José Luis 27 28 March 1928 IR Real Madrid CF 1 0
9 Kubala Stecz, László 27 10 June 1927
born in Buda-pest
CF FC Barcelona 5 1
10 Rial Laguía, José Héctor 26 14 October 1928
born in Pergamino, Argentina
IL Real Madrid CF 2 1
11 Gento López, Francisco 21 21 October 1933 OL Real Madrid CF 1 0

unused substitutes:

Carmelo Cedrón Ochandategui, Canito, José María Maguregui Ibargutxi, Miguel González Pérez, Ramón Alberto Villaverde Vázquez, Sócrates Belenguer Pérez and Enrique Collar Monterrubio.... according to BDfutbol

team notes:

Journalist Bob Ferrier reported that Benito Diaz was the 'Spanish team manager who saw our failure against France.' - Tuesday, 17 May 1955, Daily Mirror
This is probably the youngest post war opposition team since France in May 1949.
2-3-5 Ramallets -
Matito, Garay -
Campanal, Zárraga, Mauri -
Rial, Pérez-Payá, Mañó, Kubala, Gento


Age 24.9 Appearances/Goals 3.3 0.1


England Team



No official ranking system established;
ELO rating 5th
Colours: The 1954 Umbro home uniform - White v-necked short-sleeved continental jerseys, blue rayon shorts, black socks with white tops.
Capt: Billy Wright, 52nd captaincy Manager: Walter Winterbottom, 42 (31 March 1913), appointed as FA national director of coaching/team manager on 8 July 1946;
seventieth match, W 43 - D 14 - L 13 - F 203 - A 102, one abandoned. Team chosen by Selection Committee on Tuesday, 17 May.
England Lineup
  Williams, Bert F. 35 31 January 1920 G Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 22 29ᵍᵃ
2 Sillett, R. Peter T. 22 1 February 1933 RB Chelsea FC 2 0
3 Byrne, Roger W. 25 8 September 1929 LB Manchester United FC 12 0
4 Dickinson, James W. 30 24 April 1925 RHB

Portsmouth FC

39 0
5 Wright, William A. 31 6 February 1924 CHB

Wolverhampton Wanderers FC

67 3
6 Edwards, Duncan 18 1 October 1936 LHB Manchester United FC 3 0
7 Matthews, Stanley 40 1 February 1915 OR Blackpool FC 44 10
8 Bentley, T.F. Roy 31 17 May 1924 IR

Chelsea FC

11 8
Lofthouse, Nathaniel 29 27 August 1925 CF Bolton Wanderers FC 25 25
10 Quixall, Albert 21 9 August 1933 IL Sheffield Wednesday FC 4 0
11 Wilshaw, Dennis J. 29 11 March 1926 OL Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 6 7

unused substitutes:

not named, but certainly Reg Matthews (Coventry City FC)

team notes:

Billy Wright extends his record appearance tally.
"In one blatant obstruction, centre-forward Nat Lofthouse had his shirt almost torn from his back. He played in the second half in a new unnumbered shirt"
2-3-5 Williams -
Sillett, Byrne -
Dickinson, Wright, Edwards -
Matthews, Bentley, Lofthouse, Quixall, Wilshaw.


Age 28.3 Appearances/Goals 21.4 4.7


    Match Report by Mike Payne

This game will be remembered for all the wrong reasons. On a beautiful sunny day, in front of 125,000 people in a magnificent stadium, the scene was set for a classic confrontation. Sadly, by the end, it had degenerated into nothing short of a brawl.

Spain had looked forward to this match and the air of expectancy was much in evidence around this lovely city prior to the kick-off. England withstood a passionate opening by the Spaniards. Kubala was instrumental in all the good things his team produced and they forced England back on their heels for long spells. Bert Williams was looking very safe in goal, though, and Billy Wright marshalled his defenders superbly, drawing on all his vast experience.

As the first half progressed, the visitors began to come into things a little more and with Stanley Matthews roaming inside to gain more of the possession some chances were beginning to appear. After 25 minutes, Ramellets saved at Albert Quixall's feet braveley after the Sheffield Wednesday player had been put through by Roy Bentley. Then Nat Lofthouse had the goalkeeper diving at full length to save a screamer before, amazingly, with six minutes of the half remaining England took the lead.

A good move between Dennis Wilshaw, Quixall and Lofthouse set up Bentley. The number eight continued with his impressive goal tally by shooting home a beauty from 20 yards out. Three minutes after the goal came the incident that, more than any other, lowered the tone of the game.

In a breakaway attack, Bentley hit a long pass forward. It dropped in front of Lofthouse, who for once was clear of his marker, Garay. The big centre-forward strode clear and seemed certain to score, but two yards from the edge of the Spanish penalty area Garay dived forward, rugby style, to grab Lofthouse and end the attack in the most callous way possible. From that moment England's dander was up and the second half was 'fought' out in a most uncompromising manner.

The Italian referee struggled to keep control and all the rhythm went from the play as his whistle constantlt interuppted the proceedings. For the most part of the second half, England were under heavy pressure as Spain searched for an opening. With 25 minutes left, the impressive debutant Ugartemendia dribbled hard at the England defence. As the ball fell between Sillett and Duncan Edwards, Rial nipped in smartly to finish off the attck to equalize.

Neither side impressed during the remainder of the match and some players seemed more intent on kicking each other rather than the ball.

    Match Report by Norman Giller

In a bad-tempered match Nat Lofthouse had his shirt ripped off his back in the first-half, and played throughout the second half with a numberless shirt. Even Stanley Matthews was drawn into the roughhouse, and conceded a free-kick with a tackle, the first time anybody could recall him committing a foul. Roy Bentley scored from a Lofthouse pass in the thirty-eighth minute and Spain equalised in the sixty-fifth minute following a mistake by Duncan Edwards that was as rare as a foul by Matthews. The trouble flared after Lofthouse had been rugby tackled to the ground when on a run towards the penalty area. There were so many personal feuds going on after this that the game lost all of its rhythm, and the Italian referee had little or no control. England's players were furious over the foul against Lofthouse, and they could not believe it when the player who had rugby tackled him was allowed to stay on the pitch. Tempers were on a short fuse, and when Stanley Matthews was moved to foul somebody then something had to be seriously wrong. The referee completely lost it, and the wonder is that there were no legs broken. It was one of the roughest and most bad spirited games in which England had played overseas.

    The Top Twenty UK Music Chart by New Musical Express

On Friday, 15 November 1952, The New Musical Express published the first ever singles chart in the UK, comprising the twelve highest selling singles of the week, it increased to twenty on Friday, 1 October 1954. When England drew with Spain, Tony Bennett's Stranger in Paradise was the best selling single. As the chart was published on Friday, 13 May 1955, this is the first time England have played twice in one chart publication:-

1. (2) Stranger In Paradise - Tony Bennett (Philips) 11. Unchained Melody - Al Hibbler (Brunswick)
2. (1) Cherry Pink & Apple Blossom White - Perez Prado & His Orchestra (HMV) 12. (11) Under The Bridges Of Paris - Eartha Kitt (HMV)
3. (4) Cherry Pink & Apple Blossom White - Eddie Calvert (Columbia) 13. (14) Unchained Melody - Jimmy Young (Decca)
4. (5) Earth Angel - Crew Cuts (Mercury) 14. (9) Ready, Willing And Able - Doris Day (Philips)
5. (3) Give Me Your Word - Tennessee Ernie Ford (Capitol) 15. (10) Melody Of Love - Ink Spots (Parlophone)
6. (=) Softly Softly - Ruby Murray (Columbia) 16. (=) Prize Of Gold - Joan Regan (Decca)
7. (=) Stranger In Paradise - Tony Martin (HMV) 17. Unchained Melody - Les Baxter (Capitol)
8. (re) If You Believe - Johnnie Ray (Philips) 18. (13) Under The Bridges of Paris - Dean Martin (Capitol)
9. (8) (I'm Always Hearing) Wedding Bells - Eddie Fisher (HMV) 19. Stranger In Paradise - Eddie Calvert (Columbia)
10. (12) If Anyone Finds This I Love You - Ruby Murray with Anne Warren (Columbia) 20. (15) Serenade - Mario Lanza (HMV)
♪Most weeks at number one when England played: Doris Day and Frankie Laine five, Guy Mitchell two, Tony Bennett, Vera Lynn, Al Martino, Lita Roza, Stargazers, Tennessee Ernie Ford and David Whitfield one each

Source Notes

Original newspaper reports
Rothman's Yearbooks
Mike Payne's England: The Complete Post-War Record (Breedon Books Publishing Company, Derby, U.K., 1993)
Norman Giller
, Football Author
officialcharts.com singles chart