All goals count, so we’re told. But some are more equal than others and this is a rundown of the best 11 of all time. Some of them are great individual goals, some of them are great team goals, but all of them are outstanding examples of the ball being put into the net.
1 Diego Maradona, ARGENTINA v England, World Cup quarter-final 1986
If you’re English, the other goal he scored that day sticks in the craw as well as the mind. But for everyone else, Maradona’s match-winning genius was never better exemplified by this slaloming run, which started with a drag-back turn and went on to include feints, dropped shoulders and the calmest of finishes. It was later dubbed the goal of the century. Who says players need two feet?
2 Carlos Alberto, BRAZIL v Italy, World Cup final 1970
The best team goal of all time. A sublime move began in the left-back spot with Brazil’s striker Tostao and it would pass through eight of the team’s outfield players before ending up in the Italian net. Clodaldo dribbled mazily in his own half, he gave it to Rivelino, who passed it on to Jairzinho up the left. The winger fed Pele on the edge of the area, who held the ball up before laying it into the space to his right. There, the right-back Carlos Alberto was approaching like an express train and he thundered the ball into the far corner.
3 Zinedine Zidane, REAL MADRID v Bayer Leverkusen, Champions League final 2002
A miracle of technique, this goal had Zidane written all over it. A rampaging Roberto Carlos sent over a looping cross from the left which dropped seemingly without danger out of the gray Glasgow sky. But from 18 yards out, Zidane, intently watching the ball’s flight, caught it perfectly with his left foot, his shot bending unerringly into the top corner.
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