Italy, had a slow start to the tournament, having drawn all three of their first group stage matches and finishing runners-up in their group. They had qualified for the second group stage by having scored one more goal than third-placed Cameroon. However, in the first of their second round matches, Italy had recorded an impressive 2–1 victory over Argentina.
Italy’s striker had failed to score up to that point and there was considerable debate about whether he should be in the team, as he had only recently returned from a two-year ban following his involvement in the Totonero 1980 match-fixing scandal.
Italy v Brazil match took place at Estadio Sarriá, Barcelona (demolished in 1997) on 5 July 1982. It was the final second round group stage match for Group C in the 1982 FIFA World Cup. The match was won by Italy 3–2, with Italian striker scoring three memorable goals. The result eliminated Brazil from the tournament while Italy would go on to win it.