What makes a goal special? There are many different types of goal and that is part of what makes football an incredible sport to watch.
From audacious long shots and stunning volleys to the perfect combinations of power and precision, finding the best of the best can be tricky.
Fortunately we’ve got our thinking caps on and have plucked for this set of glorious goals – all important, spectacular or downright ridiculous (so good that it shouldn’t be possible)
Essentially the sort of goals that get you jumping around the room, screaming the pub down, and generally just going a bit mental!
So, sit back, admire, and enjoy all the best that football has to offer – in no particular order…
Marco van Basten, 1988 European Final
For the Netherlands against USSR
Scoring doesn’t come much bigger than netting in a final, but it’s safe to say that this incredible strike takes some beating. No goalkeeper saves this effort and it ultimately won the Dutch the trophy too – talk about saving the best for the biggest occasions!
Taison, 2012 Champions League
For Metalist Kharkiv against Rosenborg
Brazilians are known for their flare and trickery and Taison is no exception. He might not be a household name like Ronaldo (the fat one) or Ronaldinho but he’s certainly got the skills. This effort is arguably better than MvBs – just look at how far in the top corner it is, you just can’t get better than that!
Geoff Hurst, 1966 World Cup Final
For England against West Germany
While the term ‘goal’ is used very loosely here, the Russian linesman did give this stunner from Geoff Hurst. Arguably the most important one ever scored by an English player and against the Germans no less – who says football rivalries aren’t fun!
Roberto Carlos, 1997 Tournoi de France
For Brazil against France
The goal that defied physics and left French keep Fabian Barthez scratching his head – who can blame him really! Widely regarded as the best free-kick ever scored, and it’s fairly easy to see why.
Wayne Rooney, 2011 Premier League
For Man Utd against Man City
What a way to win the Manchester derby! One of the best goals scored at Old Trafford – and there have been many brilliant ones over the years. Sorry City fans but it’s just an amazingly wonderful finish!
Paulo Di Canio, 2000 Premier League
For West Ham against Wimbledon
One of the best strikes witnessed in the Premier League era from one of its most remarkable characters. There’s not many times that Upton Park is stunned into silence but this was certainly one such occasion.
Dennis Bergkamp, 2002 Premier League
For Arsenal against Newcastle
Arguably the most technically gifted player to set foot in the Premier League, Bergkamp danced his way through many different defences in style. Unfortunately for Newcastle, none of his moves were quite as spectacular as this incredible goal!
Zinedine Zidane, 2002 Champions League Final
For Real Madrid against Bayer Leverkusen
On the night Los Galacticos claimed their ninth European title Zidane stood up to be counted and cemented his place firmly into footballing folklore. Few words do this exceptional goal justice and it’s one you can happily watch on repeat. Again. And again. And again…
Diego Maradona, 1986 World Cup
For Argentina against England
While this particular game will always be remembered for Maradona using his hands rather than his feet, he also scored this magnificent solo effort. Unfortunately for him, his basketball skills stole the headlines
Phillipe Mexes, 2012 Champions League
For AC Milan against Anderlecht
This goal features for the sheer audacity of it. Few people, bar Zlatan Ibrahimovic coming up, would even attempt an overhead kick from the edge of the box – especially when they’re a central defender! Take a bow Phillipe. Take a bow.
Miroslav Stoch, 2012 Turkish League
For Fenerbache against Genclerbirligi
Sometimes a training routine comes off to perfection – this was one such occasion and this incredible volley also clinched the Puskas award with an incredible 78% of the vote. Stoch, once of Chelsea, showed just what his former employers were missing out on!
Lionel Messi, 2012 La Liga
For Barcelona against Sevilla
Messi doesn’t score crap goals. In a bid to prevent this from becoming the Lionel Messi show we’ve picked just one from the hundreds of ridiculous goals in his collection. This sublime lob (and accompanying nutmeg) left Sevilla’s keeper grasping at thin-air and their centre-back a little red-faced. The ‘little master’ strikers again!
Frank Lampard, 2005 Champions League
For Chelsea against Bayern Munich
The Premier League’s top scoring midfielder has a reputation for scoring cracking goals, and often when it matters most. Executing the pirouette with the grace of a ballet dancer, this stunner leaves German great Oliver Khan perplexed. England 1. Germany 0!
Cristiano Ronaldo, 2009 Champions League
For Man Utd against Porto
While Ronaldo’s goal scoring exploits at Real Madrid are sensational, it’s this long-range hit when at United that really takes some beating. There are not many players that will take on shots from 40 yards, but CR7 is no normal player.
Thierry Henry, 2000 Premier League
For Arsenal against Man Utd
The Premier League has welcomed many highly gifted players to ply their trade throughout its history and it’s safe to say Henry ranks among the very best. Doing the unexpected always leads to sublime goals and no one expected Henry to do this – not least United goalkeeper Barthez who watched it sail over his head!
Are we missing one of the best or is one here your stand out favourite