The ball flies past the keeper into the top corner, sending the entire stadium into a frenzy. How would you react? When a player scores a goal, the spotlight is suddenly thrust upon them, and this results in all kinds of funny, interesting, quirky and bizarre celebrations, which have now become a huge part of what makes football so enjoyable. Some players keep their cool with a nonchalant celebration, whilst others flail their limbs around like a lunatic. Many players see it as the perfect opportunity to show some skin by taking their jersey off (even though everyone knows this is a bookable offense), and others celebrate with rather elaborate, well choreographed routines that involve the entire team.
A goal celebration is an opportunity for a player to get creative and show their personality, and over the years there have been a number of iconic goal celebrations that have been far more entertaining and memorable than the goals themselves. Many of these celebrations have become trademark celebrations for players, while others have been brilliant moments of complete spontaneity. These can help to inspire fans and teammates to go on and win the game, they can aggravate the opposing team and their fans to no end, or they can simply be a light-hearted moment that everyone can sit back and enjoy.
Here is a collection of some of the most inventive, entertaining, controversial and memorable goal celebrations of all time. Some of these celebrations have been used to advertise the game for many years, and a few are even possible to recreate on the FIFA game series, and of course many of these are replicated by kids and adults alike in playgrounds, Sunday leagues and parks around the world.
20 Edmilson Ferreira v America-Belo Horizonte (1998)
19 Fabrizio Ravanelli
18 Robbie Keane
17 Finidi George v Greece (1994)
16 Emmanuel Adebayor v Arsenal (2009)
15 Graeme Souness v Fenerbahce (1996)
14 Brandi Chastain v China (1999)
13 Robbie Fowler v Everton (1999)
12 Alberto Gilardino
11 Peter Crouch v Hungary and Jamaica (2006)
10 Ruud van Nistelrooy v Andorra (2006)
9 Tresor Lomana LuaLua
8 Stjarnan F.C
7 Paul Gascoigne v Scotland (1996)
6 Jurgen Klinsmann v Sheffield Wednesday (1994)
5 Jimmy Bullard v Manchester City (2009)
4 Bebeto v Holland (1994)
3 Eric Cantona v Sunderland (1996)
2 Roger Milla v Romania and Columbia (1990)
1 Marco Tardelli v West Germany (1982)
When you score an excellent, decisive goal in the World Cup final, it is impossible to predict how you would react. Marco Tardelli’s legendary celebration did not contain any flips or choreographed moves with team mates. Instead it was a passionate and raw reaction, which still sends shivers down the spine of many football fans. A tearful Tardelli sprints in the vague direction of the Italian bench, screaming and pumping his fists in pure ecstasy. This picture remains an iconic image in the world of sport. A similar image took place at World Cup 2006, after Fabio Grosso scored a decisive goal against Germany in the Semi Finals before weeping in ecstasy.
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