Wherever you are in the world, whatever you do, you will have heard or seen something relating to football events. Whatever your race, gender or orientation, even if you have never attended an official game, you will know something or will have heard something or seen something on television.
Soccer as it is known as in other parts of the world is one of the biggest sports in the world. When you consider the sports accessibility, audience size & global presence, amount of professional and amateur leagues worldwide, TV viewing statistics, average pro player salary sizes, sponsorship deals and endorsements it really is of huge magnitude.
News headlines dominate countries where the sport is popular and for many it is more than a mere game. According to FIFA the game evolved from a Chinese game called “Cuju” which translates as “kick ball” but most English fans fiercely dispute this.
It’s a beautiful game so lets have a look at (and kick around) some great football events on the planet both from the past and those we can look forward to.
Best Football Matches
With any discussion around the best football matches that have occurred or that are scheduled there are always going to be differing opinions and this will be a recurring fact throughout this article. Every footie fan has his or her favourite all time player, favourite football events of time or favoured competition.
Greatest World Cup Matches
It would be impossible to have this conversation without mentioning the biggest soccer competition on the planet and discussing the greatest world cup matches ever. Again open for much debate, but lets bring up just a few of them in no particular order:
- England vs Germany 1966 – (4 – 2) (“They think it’s all over… it is now”)
- Netherlands vs Spain 2014 – (5 – 1)
- Argentina vs England 1986 – (2 – 1) (“The hand of God”)
- France vs Croatia 2018 (4 – 2 )
- Brazil vs Germany 2014 – (7 – 1)
- Portugal – Korea 1966 – (5 – 3)
- Uruguay – Brazil 1950 – (2 -1)
- West Germany vs France – (3 – 3) (5 – 4 on penalties)
Ultimately, this is a hard list to define as every man and his dog will have an opinion and this includes non-football fans who will only tune in every 4 years for the huge spectacle, FIFA world Cup.
Within the UK alone there are loads of different football events and leagues. Therefore competitions and that’s without even considering the amateur leagues and women’s soccer. Professional leagues include:
- The Premier League
- The Championship League
- Leagues One & Two
- Scottish Premiership
- Scottish Championship
- Scottish Leagues One & Two
So without even mentioning Welsh & Irish footy and events such as the FA Cup, EFL Cup and the Scottish league and challenge cups there are hundreds and hundreds of football fixtures played each year. Way too many to list… or even count.
Best Football Matches of All Time
Greatness, just like beauty is in the eye of the beholder so when trying to consider the greatest football fixtures of all time it becomes very subjective and a metaphoric minefield in real terms. Statistically, you would expect public polls to nominate football fixtures that get played out in tournaments like the world cup, or competitions such as the UEFA Champions league.
This is because the world-wide attention that these tournaments get, the calibre of teams and the players as well as the quality of skill on display and the prestige that winning such a tournament brings to the teams and supporters involved.
Looking forward what can ‘footie’ fans look forward to in the coming footy calendar as far as regular football fixtures are concerned? Well of course there is the FA Cup, the EFL Cup, the Premiership battle for triumph as well as the lower league competitions and that’s just the domestic stuff. You can add competitions such as:
- FIFA World Cup
- UEFA European Cup
- UEFA Champions League
- UEFA Europa League
- African Nations Cup
- The Confederations Cup
- The Copa del Rey or Kings Cup
- CONCACAF Gold Cup
- CAF Champions League
- Copa Libertadores
A football derby is when two teams from the same city, local area or sometimes even two countries that may share a border play against one another. You can believe that there is nothing quite like a local derby. When it comes to a derby you are unlikely to see more passion displayed on the pitch or anywhere else for that matter.
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Of course this does not exclude the fans on the terraces and watching at home, as watching their team play their local rivals is second to nothing when it comes to inspiring almost explosive excitement and exhilaration amongst the supporters.
So much so, that anyone familiar with your average local derby will be aware that often games are scheduled before pub opening times and extra policing power is regularly drafted in to cope with any overspill of emotions that a typical local derby can draw out of its supporters.
Some big domestic footy derbies include:
- Glasgow vs Celtic
- Birmingham City vs Aston Villa
- Tottenham Hotspurs vs Arsenal
- West Ham vs Millwall
- England vs Scotland
The above list could go on and extend on a worldwide basis, country by country.