Drama, shocks and surprises: Most bizarre World Cup moments ever
The FIFA World Cup has a long and rich history. It has given us several memorable incidents; some of which have been iconic, some notorious, and some just plain bizarre. Hand of God by Maradona, Rijkaard spitting on Voeller and Escobar's own goal, which resulted in his murder, have been well-documented. Here's a look at 5 other similar episodes.
Ilunga kicks away the ball before a free-kick is taken
It was the 1974 World Cup and title defenders Brazil were facing Zaire, leading 2-0 up when they were awarded a free-kick. Mwepu Ilunga was a part of the wall as Rivelino geared up to take the spot-kick. Before the Brazilian could move, Ilunga suddenly ran towards the ball out of nowhere and kicked it away, receiving a yellow card for his action.
Qatar Sheikh comes out and disallows a goal
This is one of the most outrageous things to ever happen in an international match. Kuwait were playing France with members of their royal family in attendance. Kuwaiti players protested the 4th goal citing that they were caught off-guard. Though unmoved at first, the referee called off the goal when Sheikh Fahad, a royal prince, came down and asked him to do so.
Josip Simunic gets booked 3 times
English referee Graham Poll makes his place in this list because of a huge error. In the 2006 World Cup match between Croatia and Australia, Poll booked Croatia's Josip Simunic thrice, in the 61st minute, the 90th minute and again after Tim Cahill scored the winner. Poll was immediately sent home after this, with his international career coming to an end.
Pussy Riot invasion, World Cup 2018
Members of the Russian feminist punk rock group invaded the pitch in the 2018 World Cup final between France and Croatia. Pussy Riot had earlier been jailed by the Russian government in 2012. A statement from the group read that they had invaded the pitch to protest against the violation of human rights by the Russian government.
When the GOATs make mistakes
Zidane came out of retirement to lead France in 2006 FIFA World Cup. The French genius took his team to the final against Italy. The match was tied at 1-1 with goals by Zidane and Materazzi. In the extra-time, due to some exchange of words, Zidane suddenly turned around and head-butted Materazzi to the ground. The game went to penalties and France lost.