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Antonin Panenka, the man behind the penalty.

Taking a penalty at any level of football takes a huge amount of courage, but having the audacity to chip the ball down the middle of the goal in the knockout stages of a major international tournament is something quite different altogether.

There are a few high profile examples of players displaying the ultimate in spot-kick cool over the past couple of decades. Francesco Totti did it for Italy against Holland in the semi-finals of Euro 2000, and 12 years later fellow countryman Andrea Pirlo followed suit as the Azzurri dumped England out of Euro 2012.

And then there was Zinedine Zidane dinking the ball past Gianluigi Buffon after seven minutes of the 2006 World Cup final - a moment on the grandest stage which epitomised one of football’s most brilliantly enigmatic characters.

But these players were not the trendsetters, they were merely following in the footsteps of Antonin Panenka, the man who gave the ‘Panenka’ penalty its name.

The 1976 European Championships was the fifth edition of the tournament, and West Germany were looking to retain the Henri Delauney trophy in Yugoslavia. Franz Beckenbauer’s side looked on course to do so when they recovered from a 2-0 deficit against Czechoslovakia in the final in Belgrade.

Extra time couldn’t separate the two sides and so the Euros would be decided by a penalty shootout for the very first time. After Uli Hoeness sent the Germans’ fourth kick over the bar it was down to Panenka, an attacking midfielder for Bohemians Prague, to win the trophy for the Czechs.

With Sepp Maier, one of the world’s best goalkeepers at the time, in front of him, Panenka took a long run up and went all out towards the ball. But at the crucial moment Pananka dropped his shoulder and delicately clipped the ball down the middle of the goal before wheeling away with both arms aloft.

Czechoslovakia had conquered West Germany, Panenka had secured his place in football folklore, the Panenka penalty was born.