From “Hand of God to Lampard… the most famous refereeing mistakes in the World Cup.”

It is true that the history of the World Cup is full of goals, great players and legendary matches, but it has also been marked by many refereeing errors that remain lingering in the minds.

From German goalkeeper Harald Schumacher’s sweep of French Patrick Battiston to the uncalculated goal of the Englishman, Frank Lampard, through the goal of “Hand of God” by Argentine Diego Maradona, AFP goes back in time to shed light on some “unfortunate decisions” that could have been avoided. Probably through the progress that the game has reached today thanks to goal-line technology and the Video Assistant Referee (VAR).

most controversial

Despite the passage of decades, the controversy still exists regarding the goal scored by the Englishman, Geoff Hurst, against West Germany in the final of the World Cup in 1966. Was the goal correct or not? Nobody knows, but the Soviet (Azerbaijani) assistant referee, Tawfiq Bakhramov, said yes at the time, and England won the first and only title so far.

The final was held at Wembley Stadium in London in front of 95,000 spectators.

And in the 100th minute of the extra time, when the score was tied at 2-2, Hurst scored a goal that is still controversial until now; Because his shot hit the crossbar and bounced back to the ground, and after consultations between the Swiss referee, Gottfried Denst, and the flag bearer Bakhramov, the former scored a goal for England amid a German protest.

Shortly before the end, Hurst added his third goal, thus becoming the first player to score a hat-trick in a final.

Fahad Al-Ahmad goes to the stadium

France was comfortably ahead of Kuwait 3-1 during the 1982 World Cup when the incident occurred. After an exchange of the ball between Michel Platini and Alain Giresse, the latter managed to score the fourth goal for the “Rooster” team.

However, this goal came after some Kuwaiti players stopped playing as a result of the whistle blowing from the stands. The referee awarded the goal, but the Kuwaiti players refused to continue the match on the instructions of the head of the Kuwaiti Football Association at the time, Sheikh Fahd Al-Ahmad, the brother of the Emir of the country, who came to the field.

Fahd Al-Ahmad goes down the field and succeeds in canceling a goal against his country’s national team

After a pause of about 10 minutes, the Soviet referee, Miroslav Staubar, decided to cancel the goal, so that Maxim Bossis returned and gave France a fourth goal at the end of the meeting, which the “roosters” won 4-1.


It’s a Seville nightmare. In the same edition in 1982 in Spain, France was facing Germany in the semi-finals, and while the 1-1 draw was the master of the situation, Platini passed a ball in the depth to Battiston, who entered as a substitute a few minutes before her.

Battiston’s adventure on the field did not last more than 8 minutes; Because after Platini’s pass, Harald Schumacher was alone and shot towards the goal, but the latter deliberately hit him hard, and he fell to the ground without moving a finger.

Battiston fainted and his colleagues thought he had died and Platini shouted for help, while Schumacher got up and did not care what he did and played the ball without receiving any punishment from the referee, not even giving France a free kick.

Battiston, who lost two of his teeth as a result of this interference, which occurred on the outskirts of the penalty area, said, “I was towards the goal, Stelecke was behind me and Schumacher in front of me, and I said to myself, if I hit the ball, I will score. that”.

“Hand of God”

After a negative first half in the 1986 quarter-finals, Maradona’s review came in the second half, which will remain immortal in our minds, both in terms of the level at which Argentina appeared or the two goals scored by the late legend.

Argentina did not delay in opening the scoring after the break, as after a joint game between Maradona and Jorge Valdano, the latter raised the ball inside the area to the first who broke the offside trap. Maradona noticed that Peter Shelton came out to catch it, so he reached out to the ball and poke it into the goal, announcing the first goal, which was “with something from the head and something from the hand of God,” according to what the legend said.

The English protested strongly against the goal, but the Tunisian referee, Ali Bennacer, did not reverse his decision and confirmed the legitimacy of the goal.

Yad Allah’s goal is the most famous refereeing mistake in the World Cup

England coach, Bobby Robson, said, “The referee did not see what the whole world saw. Maradona did not score with his head, but with his hand, as Shelton preceded the ball after realizing that it was within the reach of the latter.”

“It is the hand of God,” wrote Argentine newspapers the next day, even the hand of “the devil”, the devil who knows how to forgive himself for his accomplishments and good performances.

England was not nearly digesting the first goal until it received a second shock this time as a result of what was classified as the most beautiful goal in the history of the World Cup, after Maradona penetrated from 65 meters and got rid of one defender after another before shooting the ball into Shelton’s net.

3 yellow leaves

Three warnings for one player! During the 2006 Croatia-Australia match, the first defender, Josip Šimunić, ended up being sent off but… a third booked.

In the 62nd minute, the Croatian got the first warning after a mistake in front of his team’s penalty area, then the English referee, Graham Paul, raised the second warning in the 90th minute without sending him off for not paying attention to the first warning.

But justice was achieved in overtime when the Croatian received a third warning due to a foul, and Paul alerted this time and raised the red card in his face.

most influential

As happened in the 1966 final, but with different roles, England tasted the bitterness of what the Germans experienced when Frank Lampard scored a correct goal against “De Manchaft” in the 2010 final, after his shot bounced off the crossbar behind the goal line and the result was 2-1 for the Germans. .

But the Uruguayan referee, Jorge Larionda, did not see the ball cross the line, as did the referee, and Germany avoided the equalizer on their way to settle the match 4-1.

This incident accelerated the use of goal-line technology, which later paved the way for the adoption of the video assistant referee (VAR).

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