Here are some of the most epic and memorable moments of the World Cup for you to reminisce or wrap your mind around
When the World Cup starts in June, we’ll all be expecting brilliant goals and glorious victories. Can Brazil 2014 live up to its hype?
Either way, we present to you some of the most epic moments from the past World Cups.
Lehmann’s Scripted Penalty Saves
Rather than follow the conventional strategy of most goalkeepers – take a blind leap as the ball flies toward goal – German goalkeeper Jens Lehmann decided to plan how he would face the penalties from Argentina during the 2006 World Cup.
Lehmann maintained a list of likely Argentinian penalty takers in his sock and where they would most probably place their shot. He then proceeded to jump in the correct direction and to the correct spot for almost every shot. His penalty saves helped to send Germany into the semi-final.
DaMarcus Beasley Takes a P…
Perhaps not the greatest moment in football history but Damarcus Beasley of the USA’s public urination stunt in the 2002 World Cup is certainly one of the most epic and unforgettable.
In true Victorian fashion, Beasley got down on one knee and urinated on the ground in front of the substitute stand. When you gotta go…
Maradona’s Hand of God
A controversial moment that lives on in infamy. In the 1986 World Cup, the mercurial Diego Maradona punches the ball into the goal and celebrates as if nothing was wrong.
Even more shocking was that the referee had missed the most obvious of handballs. By the time the mistake had been discovered, it was too late. The goal stood and Argentina went on to win the World Cup.
Ronaldinho’s 40-Yard Free Kick
In the 2002 World Cup quarter final against England, Ronaldinho scored perhaps the most stunning goal of his illustrious career. With an elegant chip from a 40-yard free kick, the Brazilian crushed the hopes of England fans.
The Zidane Head Butt
Zinedine Zidane is a living legend whose silky skills have mesmerised millions around the world. Nonetheless, his stellar career ended in disgrace when he head-butted Marco Materazzi of Italy.
The French star was sent off and Italy went on to win the 2006 World Cup. That was the last match of Zidane’s professional career and, unfortunately, he will forever be remembered for his misconduct that cost France the World Cup.
SPECIAL MENTION: René Higuita’s Scorpion Save
Colombian Goalkeeper René Higuita Zapata may have been known for his hijinks and even a blunder or two in the World Cup but his most epic moment, and one of the most epic moments ever in football history, came in a friendly match against England in 1995.
Jamie Redknapp had taken a shot at goal. Higuita leapt up and kicked the ball away with two legs, in a movement mimicking that of a scorpion’s tail. This unorthodox save raised eyebrows and brought much amusement to football fans around the world.
Let’s see if more epic moments of football history will be made.
By Basil Lee