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10 Great World Cup Goal Celebrations

Alex LivieFeatured ColumnistJune 14, 2014

10 Great World Cup Goal Celebrations

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    Ian Walton/Getty Images

    Seemingly gone are the days when players shake hands with team-mates and head back to the halfway line after scoring a goal.

    There have been some truly terrible celebrations down the years, but every now and again you see something that catches the eye.

    Whether it is an outpouring of emotion, a pre-prepared routine or jaw-dropping bit of acrobatics; there have been some fantastic ones.

    Colombia showed their stuff following Pablo Armero's goal against Greece and to pay homage here are 10 great celebrations from World Cups down the years.

Robbie Keane, Republic of Ireland vs. Saudi Arabia, 2002

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    Robbie Keane was well known for his cartwheel celebration long before he arrived at the Korea and Japan tournament in 2002.

    With it being a World Cup, Keane probably thought it was worth cranking things up a notch.

    Against Saudi Arabia, he executed a fine volley which proved too hot for the keeper to handle.

    He set out for the corner flag and got a forward roll away before being mobbed by team-mates.

    If you turned away at that point, you missed the crescendo, as Keane set about auditioning for the remake of Robin Hood by letting fly with an imaginary bow and arrow aimed at the camera.

Julius Aghahowa, Nigeria vs. Sweden, 2002

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    If you think Robbie Keane’s acrobatics are impressive, you’ve not seen anything yet.

    Step forward Julius Aghahowa.

    Aghahowa was pretty well known for his acrobatics prior to the 2002 World Cup, but he went into overdrive after producing a great header against Sweden.

    He picked himself up and went cartwheel crazy. I could count them, but it’s probably best to let you do it yourself.

Josimar, Brazil vs. Northern Ireland, 1986

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    Brazil came up short in the 1986 World Cup, but they had some great moments—one of the highlights being Josimar’s goal against Northern Ireland.

    The full-back was not a common goalscorer, so it’s understandable that he went a bit crazy after lashing one in from 25 yards.

    Arms in the air, knees almost hitting his chin. Great stuff.

Diego Maradona, Argentina vs. England, 1986

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    Okay, this probably isn’t one of the greatest celebrations—but it gives us an excuse to show arguably the greatest goal in World Cup history.

    Peter Reid probably still wakes up in a cold sweat, seeing Maradona glide away from him before cutting through the England defence, going round keeper Peter Shilton and slotting the ball home.

    The Argentina superstar charged to the corner flag with his arms in the air, before being put in a headlock by team-mate Hector Enrique.

Finidi George, Nigeria vs. Greece, 1994

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    Nigerian winger Finidi George scoops the prize for oddest celebration.

    After producing a deft chip to put Nigeria ahead against Greece, Finidi trotted over to the corner flag.

    What followed really was quite remarkable. Instead of some sort of dance, Finidi dropped on all fours and began walking like a dog before doing what dogs do very well.

    Not done there, George got to his feet and did a full 360 spin.

Rashidi Yekini, Nigeria vs. Bulgaria, 1994

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    Some celebrations take the breath away for their intricacy, others do the same for simplicity.

    A celebration that falls into the latter category is Rashidi Yekini’s from 1994.

    The goal that prompted the celebration was nothing to write home about, a simple tap-in from close range against Bulgaria.

    But the goal had great significance, as it was Nigeria’s first at a World Cup finals.

    Yekini’s momentum took him into the goal and he grabbed the net before letting out a sustained roar that appeared to go on for an age.

Brian Laudrup, Denmark vs. Brazil, 1998

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    Taking on Brazil at any World Cup is never easy, but Denmark put up a bold show in 1998.

    Brian Laudrup was one of the Danes’ star turns, having played for the likes of Bayern Munich, AC Milan and Fiorentina.

    He had the look of a cool, unflappable character, and his celebration when scoring Denmark’s second—in what proved to be a 3-2 defeat—showed that.

    He set off like a headless chicken, but clearly thought better of it and dropped to the floor and lent on his elbow in a show of real cool.

Bebeto, Brazil vs. Netherlands, 1994

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    Brazil forward Bebeto set the trend for all new fathers with his famous celebration at USA ’94.

    After scoring what was an impressive goal, Bebeto charged to the touchline and rocked his arms in a cradle motion.

    He was joined on the touchline by team-mates Mazinho and Romario to form one of football’s most iconic celebrations.

Roger Milla, Cameroon vs. Colombia, 1990

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    Roger Milla is famous for a host of things, one being the face he is the oldest player ever to take part in a World Cup.

    He was pretty good at scoring goals; just as good at celebrating them.

    The corner flag became his friend at Italia ’90, and against Colombia his dancing skills were on show.

    After stealing possession off Colombia keeper Rene Higuita, Milla strode forward and tucked the ball into an unguarded net.

    Milla chugged to the corner flag, and with a wiggle of the hips and shimmy of his feet, he won himself an army of fans.

Marco Tardelli, Italy vs. West Germany, 1982

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    Emotion is the one word to sum up Marco Tardelli’s celebration for Italy in 1982.

    It came in the 1982 World Cup final, and it was the second goal that helped Italy claim a 3-1 victory against West Germany.

    Tardelli smashed the ball home from the edge of the box before charging away; arms waving and screaming with delight.

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