Maier was understudy to Hans Tilkowski in 1966. Allsport Hulton/Archive
Nicknamed "The Cat" for his agility, West Germany's great goalkeeper won every honor in the game during a golden era for the national side and Bayern Munich in the early 1970s.
He played for the Bavarian club for 19 years, including an unbroken sequence of 422 games between 1966 and 1977. In that time Bayern won three straight European Cups from 1974 to 1976.
For West Germany, Maier was understudy to Hans Tilkowski at the 1966 finals and failed to make an appearance. But by 1970 he was the undisputed first choice in the side that reached the last four in Mexico.
West Germany claimed the European Championship in 1972 with Maier in goal and in 1974 it rolled through to the World Cup final on home soil.
Maier was outstanding throughout the competition, keeping four clean sheets en route to the final and then performing heroics against the Dutch as the host nation claimed a surprise 2-1 win.
Still No. 1 four years later in Argentina, Maier didn't concede a goal in West Germany's first four games but a draw with the Netherlands and defeat by Austria cost the defending champion a place in the last four.