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Oct 12, 2012

Helmut Haller dies at 73

FRANKFURT -- Helmut Haller, who scored the first goal of the 1966 World Cup final and was one of the first Germans to play in Italy, died Thursday at his home in Augsburg after a long illness. He was 73.

Haller put Germany ahead in the 1966 World Cup final at Wembley Stadium, but England won the title 4-2 in extra time.

Franz Beckenbauer said Haller was one of the "best teammates I've ever had."

Haller, who had been in ill health for several years, won Italian championships with Bologna and Juventus.

German players will wear black armbands in the World Cup qualifier against Ireland later Friday and Haller will be honored before the match against Sweden on Tuesday.

Haller played 33 games for Germany and scored 13 goals.

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