Soccer's 10 Most Lopsided Matches of the Year
As football fans, we all want to see a good match.
Perhaps some want to see a shootout with goals galore while others want to see a more defensive and tactical matchup, but the common thread is clear: a close, competitive contest.
Through a jam-packed year of football, though, there are bound to be a few mismatches, with one team running up the score on another.
Let's take a moment to honor the most uneven of these encounters.
Here are the world football's 10 most lopsided matches of 2012 thus far, listed chronologically.
February 29: Bahrain vs. Indonesia
Let's kick off our list with a World Cup qualifier from Asia's third round.
Entering the final fixture of their group, Bahrain needed a very convincing win over Indonesia and a Qatar loss to Iran to avoid being eliminated from the process.
With Bahrain's side knowing what needed to be done and the Indonesians already eliminated on zero points, the stage was set for one of the biggest scorelines of the year.
The convincing 4-0 scoreline at half-time seemed modest at the full-time whistle, as the match ended 10-0.
Unfortunately for Bahrain, an 86th minute equalizer for Qatar against Iran meant that the 10 goal victory was too little, too late.
Still, you can't ask for a better way to go out.
March 7: Barcelona vs. Bayer Leverkusen
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The Champions League Round of 16 is supposed to be some of the finest competition a football fan could ask for, not a mauling. But don't tell that to Barcelona.
After a 3-1 victory in Germany in the first leg, Barca seemed all but assured of a place in the quarterfinals.
From that position, most teams would hit the brake, put a couple of goals past their opponents and waltz into the next stage.
Instead, Barca came out all guns blazing.
By the full-time whistle, Bayer had been ripped apart by seven more goals, including a whopping five from Lionel Messi alone.
A late consolation reduced it to 7-1 for Barca, but the gap between the sides was clear.
March 13: Bayern Munich vs. FC Basel
Just when you thought the Champions League knockout stages couldn't get any more lopsided, Bayern Munich comes up with another rout just six days after Barca's.
After a shocking 1-0 defeat in Switzerland had Munich on the ropes, Bayern came into their second leg with Basel on a mission.
No mistake would be made in this one, as Munich pounded their opponents for a 7-0 victory.
After amazingly disposing of Manchester United in the group stage and then defeating Bayern in the group stage, Basel were hit with a hard dose of reality through four Mario Gomez goals.
April 29: Rayo Vallecano vs. Barcelona
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Yes, Messi and company register another on this list with their La Liga beatdown of Rayo.
Coming off of one of their most disappointing weeks in recent memory (through losses to Chelsea and Real Madrid), Barca traveled to the Campo de Fútbol de Vallecas in no mood to mess around.
Even with a weakened side (Pinto in goal, no Xavi or Iniesta), Barca continually tore through Rayo, racing to a 7-0 victory.
Just a few weeks ago, Barca again routed Rayo, this time 5-0.
June 1: Samoa vs. Tahiti
After thoroughly winning the first round of qualifying in Oceania's World Cup qualifying process, Samoa seemed poised to at least challenge their opponents in the second round.
Instead, they came up with some of the worst losses of the year, making this list here in their first match of the group.
Tahiti's 4-0 lead at half-time was dwarfed by their 10-1 full-time victory, as Samoa really failed to put up any resistance.
June 5: New Caledonia vs. Samoa
Samoa got back on the list just four days later, as their final group stage match with New Caledonia ended almost as badly as their first.
The 9-0 victory for New Caledonia in this one is made all the more convincing when you consider that they seemed to let up in the second half.
By the way, Samoa's match between these two was a 5-0 loss to Vanuatu. This is one awful three-match stretch.
September 7: Liechtenstein vs. Bosnia-Herzegovina
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In their first qualifier of their 2014 World Cup campaign, Bosnia and Herzegovina made a massive statement of intent by crushing Liechtenstein.
Manchester City striker Edin Džeko led the way with a hat-trick, but the whole team ended up chipping in on the 8-1 road victory.
Bosnia may be a team to watch for in Brazil.
September 15: Arsenal vs. Southampton
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Entering the match, Arsenal, who had been struggling for goals up this point, were in desperate need of a breakout performance. Luckily, Southampton were in a giving mood.
The Saints stuck two balls into their own net and Gervinho put in a brace as Arsenal cruised to a much needed 6-1 victory.
On the day, the Gunners' play looked so fluid and Southampton so incapable that it really could have been worse.
This is quite a nice change for Arsenal, who were on the losing end of such a lopsided match just a year before.
October 14: Anguilla vs. Trinidad and Tobago
As the match was a qualifier for the 2012 Caribbean Championship, it surely slipped under the radar. However, the scoreline makes it hard to overlook.
By half-time, Trinidad and Tobago's Jamal Gay had four goals and Keon Daniel had his own hat-trick as their side led Anguilla 7-0.
The side clearly let up in the second half, yet still ended up with a 10-0 lead in the 71st minute, which ended up the final scoreline.
You can't ask for much more of a rout.
November 7: Bayern Munich vs. Lille
Just last week, Bayern Munich put on one of the finest displays of Champions League football that one can see.
The Germans absolutely destroyed French side Lille, taking a 5-0 lead into the half after a Claudio Pizarro hat trick.
The match settled down a bit from there as Lille got a consolation and Bayern only won 6-1.
Still, anyone who watched the match would tell you that the score could have finished much worse.
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So there's my list.
What do you think? Did I miss any good options? Were there any that just didn't belong?
Let me know in the comments below!
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