The 'Hand of God' goal by Maradona is undoubtedly the most iconic and memorable moment in World Cup history. There have also been many other memorable moments, but none can surpass that.
Hand of God Ball
The goal scored by Diego Maradona that gave Argentina a 1-0 lead in the 1986 quarterfinal against England has become part of the soccer legend. Maradona jumped as if to head the ball, but instead punched it past the goalkeeper. Despite protests to the ref by the England players, the goal stood. Maradona quipped afterward that it was scored "a little with the head of Maradona and a little with the hand of God," leading to its iconic name. Four minutes after the Hand of God goal, Maradona scored what is called The Goal of the Century, often cited as the greatest individual goal of all time. Maradona dribble past five England players on the way to the goal. Argentina won the match 2–1, and went on to win the 1986 World Cup title with a victory over West Germany.
More Iconic Moments
- Zidane's headbut in the 2006 final.
- Suarez' handball clearance on the line, and subsequent missed penalty in the game against Ghana in 2010.
- Klose's record 16 goals, the top scorer at the World Cup, surpassing Ronaldo.
- Germany humiliating 7-1 defeat of Brazil in front of their home crowd in 2014.
- Lampard's disallowed goal versus Germany in 2010, which video replays showed it clearly crossing the line.
- Uruguay's upset final victory over Brazil in Maracaná in 1950.
- Pele became the youngest goalscorer at a World Cup in 1958. Less than a week later, became the youngest player to score a hat-trick.
- Russia's Oleg Salenko scoring the most goals in a single match, five against Cameroon at the 1994 World Cup.
- The 'Battle of Nuremberg', Netherlands versus Portugal in 2006, was one of the most violent matches ever, where 16 yellow and four red cards were given.
- Baggio's penalty miss in the 1994 World Cup final.