Ranking USA Coach Jurgen Klinsmann's 20 Greatest Goals as a Player

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistJune 18, 2014

Ranking USA Coach Jurgen Klinsmann's 20 Greatest Goals as a Player

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    Hassan Ammar/Associated Press

    Before Jurgen Klinsmann became a well-known manager with the United States, and Germany and Bayern Munich before that, he was a prolific goalscorer that found the back of the net wherever he played. 

    Klinsmann scored eight World Cup goals for Germany, and he scored countless others at the club level with the likes of Stuttgart, Inter, Tottenham and Bayern Munich. 

    Here is a look at the 20 best goals scored by the current United States manager. 

20. Klinsmann's First Goal at a Major Tournament

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    The 1988 European Championship occurred just a year after Klinsmann made his debut for West Germany. 

    In his second game on home soil in the tournament, Klinsmann found the back of the net to put his side ahead against Denmark. 

    West Germany went on to win the game by a 2-0 score in Gelsenkirchen. 

19. Header Against Nottingham Forest

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    In 1996, Klinsmann helped Bayern Munich hoist the UEFA Cup with a win over Bordeaux. 

    On the road to the title, he scored the opening goal in the quarterfinal against Nottingham Forest. 

    His rising header (seen at the beginning of the video) would be the first of two goals scored by Bayern that day before they scored five in the return leg two weeks later. 

18. First Goal at France 1998

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    The 1998 World Cup was not a memorable one for the United States, and Klinsmann was one of the reasons why.

    In the opening game of Group F for Germany and the United States, Klinsmann easily eluded Thomas Dooley to score the first of two German goals that night in Paris. 

17. Penalty at Euro 1996

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    MAX NASH/Associated Press

    Germany were crowned champions of the 1996 European Championship thanks to a contribution of three goals from Klinsmann. 

    The third goal came in the quarterfinal round against Croatia as he stepped to the spot in the 20th minute to beat keeper Drazen Ladic. 

16. Going Down Low Against Genoa

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    During the 1991-92 Serie A campaign, Klinsmann only scored seven goals for Inter. 

    One of the seven came against Genoa in a 2-1 victory for the Nerazzurri. 

    The game-winning goal that day was from a Klinsmann header, but instead of him rising above defenders for this one, he used a low center of gravity to score. 

15. Quartet Against Auxerre

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    Klinsmann had a brief stint in Ligue 1 with Monaco, and while he played in the principality, he made a massive impact on the club. 

    One of his best games in two seasons with Monaco came in his first season with the club, as he scored his 10th, 11th, 12th and 13th goals of the season in a 4-0 win over Auxerre. 

    The third of the four saw him dance around a few defenders before he drilled the shot in the back of the net. 

14. Cup Clincher for Bayern

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    To finish off the 1996 UEFA Cup run, Klinsmann deflected a shot from the outside of the box to put away Bordeaux for good. 

    The 77th-minute strike by the German forward came two minutes after Daniel Dutuel pulled one back on aggregate for the French side at home. 

    The two-legged final ended 5-1 on aggregate, but had Klinsmann not killed the momentum then, it may have been a dodgy final 10 minutes for Bayern. 

13. Near Post Run Against Netherlands

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    Klinsmann was known for his acrobatics on most of his standout goals, but this one against the Dutch at the 1990 World Cup was a simpler finish for the forward. 

    He made a near post run and tapped home his third goal of the tournament on the pitch at the San Siro, which was his home stadium at the club level at the time. 

    West Germany went on to win the chippy match between rivals 2-1 to advance to the quarterfinals. 

12. Give and Go with Voller

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    When Germany took on Belgium in the round of 16 at the 1994 World Cup, Klinsmann and Rudi Voller had a field day up front in the first half. 

    Klinsmann's goal came in the 11th minute after he and Voller exchanged passes in the final third. 

    Klinsmann delivered a backheel pass to Voller, who then sprung his teammate forward in the box with a return pass. 

11. Klinsmann Makes Volley Look Easy

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    Against Udinese during the 1989-90 season, Klinsmann scored a goal that looked very easy, but in reality his right-footed volley took a ton of skill. 

    The shot in the 78th minute came from just behind the penalty spot, and instead of taking a touch to maneuver around a few defenders, he decided to one-time the shot into the net. 

10. Even When He Falls, He Scores

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    In the 1990-91 edition of the UEFA Cup, Inter was in need of a spark if they wanted to rally past Aston Villa in the second leg of the second-round clash. 

    Klinsmann provided that in the seventh minute, as he was able to score while falling down. 

    That goal was the first of three scored by the Italian side that day, which was enough to put them past the Villains on aggregate, 3-2. 

9. The Rescue Mission vs. Wimbledon

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    Before he retired from professional football in 1998, Klinsmann helped save Spurs from relegation. 

    Klinsmann, who was on loan from Sampdoria at the time, had his most memorable performance that season against Wimbledon, as he scored on four occasions to help boost Tottenham's survival chances. 

    He went on to score a total of nine goals for the North London side that year. 

8. The Dive

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    Klinsmann's first time around at White Hart Lane produced his most famous goal celebration.

    After his header against Sheffield Wednesday, Klinsmann proceeded to dive to the ground in response to the many critics he had about his style of play. The goal comes at the two-minute mark of this video. 

    The goal started his only full season with Spurs off on the right foot, and he would end up being remembered at the club for more than just one celebration. 

7. Magnificent Hat-Trick Against Cagliari

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    There were a few games in Klinsmann's career where he scored in dramatic fashion on more than one occasion.

    September 9, 1990 against Cagliari was one of those days, as the German scored on a spectacular turn in the box, a diving header and on a breakaway in the 3-0 Inter victory. 

6. The Late Winner Against Liverpool

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    Klinsmann's most meaningful goal at Tottenham came in the quarterfinals of the 1995 FA Cup against Liverpool.

    With time winding down, Klinsmann sent Anfield into shock, as he split a few defenders and fired the game-winning goal into the net. 

    Spurs would end up losing in the next round to Everton by a 4-1 score. 

5. Acrobatics Versus Werder Bremen

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    Before Klinsmann was an international superstar, he set the Bundesliga on fire with Stuttgart. 

    In his third year with the team, he delivered a stunning acrobatic goal against Werder Bremen that added to his already growing legacy. 

    In his five years at Stuttgart, Klinsmann never scored less than 13 league goals. 

4. Klinsmann Flies Past Atalanta

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    Opponents in the Bundesliga were not the only ones who fell victim to the spectacular scoring ways of Klinsmann, as shown by his wonder strike against Atalanta. 

    Klinsmann struck gold in the February 1991 clash by flying through the air on the right side of the box to finish a cross to make it 3-1 to Inter. 

3. Diving Header in Italy

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    In the first of two triumphs at the San Siro by West Germany at the 1990 World Cup, Klinsmann left fans in awe with a diving header against Yugoslavia. 

    The goal scored in the 39th minute was the second of the game for West Germany in the 4-1 win over their Group D rivals. 

2. Klinsmann Wows American Audience

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    Four years later, Klinsmann showed up on the world's biggest stage with another superb goal. 

    In the 12th minute against South Korea at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Klinsmann received a cross from Thomas Hassler and made a terrific turn in the box to fire past Choi In-Young in the South Korean net. 

    The turn required a ton of control, as Klinsmann needed it to get a bit of space before he scored with his left foot. 

1. The Overhead Kick That Started It All

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    The most famous goal scored by Klinsmann came in 1987 on his way to the Bundesliga scoring title. 

    Against a Bayern Munich side that would employ him a decade later, Klinsmann unleashed an overhead kick for the ages. 

    The overhead kick put Klinsmann on the map for good as a goalscorer, and it helped him earn a debut for West Germany in the same year. 


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