What makes a great goal in soccer? Is it the set-up, the difficulty level, or the prestige of the player making it? Well, often times a great goal can make a great player’s career.
Whether it be a free kick or a bicycle kick, there are all types of ways that players can get the ball into the back of the net. It takes a great deal of skill, agility, and strength to make some of the goals that the players on this list have made.
After watching countless minutes of footage across the web, we compiled 10 of our favorite goals scored in the history of the beautiful game:
1. Wayne Rooney – Manchester United vs Manchester City, 2011
Starting off strong with Wayne Rooney’s bicycle kick during a match against Manchester City in 2011. At the time, Manchester United and City’s rivalry was at its peak, and the Citizens were out to dethrone United as England’s best.
Luckily, Wayne Rooney was not going to let this happen without a fight. Rooney had timed the kick brilliantly, and got the ball into the just right position. With his acrobatic ability, he hammered home one star-studded finish.
2. George Weah – AC Milan vs Verona, 1996
One Sunday in 1996, George Weah provided the world with a goal that people still talk about today. With only 10 minutes left in the match, Weah scored against Hellas Verona in a way that had fans out of their seats.
After a penalty kick made by Verona, Weah picked up the ball in his own box, and simply never stopped dribbling from there. As he sprinted past the field and around every Verona player out to stop him, he eventually managed to score an amazing goal.
3. Dennis Bergkamp – Arsenal vs Newcastle, 2002
One of the cheekiest goals ever in the Premier League, Arsenal supporters will never forget the moment Bergkamp produced a goal that could only have been scored by a genius.
After receiving a pass from his teammate, Robert Pires, at the edge of the box, Bergkamp was marked tightly by the opposing team. However, with a brilliant series of spins and fancy footwork, he confused the defense and managed to score. What was a mind-boggling goal with a high difficulty level, was made to look easy!
4. Zlatan Ibrahimovic – Sweeden vs England, 2012
From 30 yards away, only Zlatan Ibrahimovic could pull off a bicycle kick from that distance. In a friendly match against England, the Swedish striker pulled off an out-of-this-world goal that had the stadium erupting in awe.
After England’s goalkeeper made a poor header to try and clear the area, Zlatan took the chance to turn, leap, and pull off one of the greatest bicycle kicks of all time. While these types of goals are often lead by luck, the composure, accuracy, and technique showed by Zlatan was phenomenal!
5. Diego Maradona – Argentina vs England, 1986
Those who remember Diego Maradona often remember him for his infamous “Hand of God” goal, and the “Goal of the Century”. His “Goal of the Century” against England in particular showed to the world how brilliant of a player he truly was.
After receiving the ball around midfield, he dribbled past every England player in his way to score in only 11 seconds and 11 touches. This World Cup was an important one for the Argentinians, and Maradona carried the national team to victory that year.
6. Zlatan Ibrahimovic – Ajax vs NAC Breda, 2004
It would be difficult to only include one of Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s goals on this list since he has some of the best of all time. When he first began his career at Ajax, he showed the world what he has to offer and the talent he possessed.
In a solo goal against NAC Breda, Zlatan solo dribbled and faked shots against his opponents to finally find the back of the net. Now, avoiding five different attempts to take away the ball and his range of skill was impressive, but what makes this goal even more spectacular is that he did it with his shoes untied!
7. Zinedine Zidane – Real Madrid vs Bayer Leverkusen, 2002
Many have awarded Zinedine Zidane with having one of the greatest goals in the history of the UEFA Champions League after his performance in the competition’s final in 2002. The Champions League final that year is said to have some of the best goals and moments of any Champions League match.
After Roberto Carlos won a challenge, he made a fantastic cross that landed in the exact position that Zidane was standing. Zidane delivered one of the greatest volleys of all time with his left foot that glided straight into the back of the net.
8. Robert Van Persie – Netherlands vs Spain, 2014
When it came to playing with style, Van Persie was a class apart from everyone else. During a World Cup match in 2014, he showed to the world what he was willing to do to bring home the win.
After losing to Spain in the 2010 World Cup final, the Dutch were out looking for revenge. During a group stage match, Van Persie made a daring diving header just before halftime to bring the Dutch ahead of the reigning champions. Van Persie started the goal scoring streak that would bring an end to Spain’s reign after losing to the Dutch 5-1.
9. Lionel Messi – FC Barcelona vs Getafe, 2007
With some of the best dribbling skills ever to be shown on the soccer pitch, Lionel Messi has pulled off some amazing goals throughout his career. In particular, FC Barcelona’s match versus Getafe allowed him to earn one of the most replayed goals of all time.
The gifted youngster at the time put on a dribbling display against Getafe and showed the world that the GOAT had arrived. Often compared to Maradona’s goal of the century, he full speed dribbled past the midfielders, then defenders, and finally the goalkeeper.
10. Roberto Carlos – France vs Brazil, 1997
Name a better free kick than Robert Carlos’ during a friendly match between France and Brazil. Carlos – known for having a rocket in his foot – had made some mesmerizing goals in his career, including this one.
Defying gravity, the Brazilian made a massive free kick with a strange spin on it that not only passed the defensive wall but angled around the French goalkeeper. To this day, fans still have no clue how the ball went into the net, or whether he even intended for it to do so!
Who do you think has scored the greatest goal of all time? Let us know in the comments below, then head on over to SoccerCards.ca to get yourself something to remember them by!
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