Top Tens

Top 10 'ghost goals'

Rate It:
  • Currently 4.04/5 Stars
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Sky Sports picks 10 of the most memorable goal-line controversies following Clint Hill's disallowed strike.

Debate over whether goal-line technology should be introduced to the game is raging once again following the controversy at the Reebok Stadium last weekend.

Clint Hill headed home what looked to be a perfectly legitimate opener for QPR against Bolton only for the referee to rule it had not crossed the line.

Hill's would-be strike is one of many goal disputes that have occurred down the years - many of which are now being used to fuel the calls for bringing in technology.

With the use of a replay system looking like a real possibility in the future, Sky Sports picks out 10 examples of the recurring 'ghost goal' which could soon become a thing of the past.

Geoff Hurst - England v Germany, 1966 World Cup final

Debate over disputed goals has been raging for decades, with the most famous example one that effectively determined the outcome of a World Cup final. Geoff Hurst's effort for England in the 1966 decider with Germany at Wembley arguably remains the ultimate goal-line controversy. After the Germans had equalised to send the game into extra-time at 2-2, Hurst fired a shot that smacked against the underside of the crossbar, rebounded down and bounced back out of the goalmouth. Swiss referee Gottfried Dienst consulted his linesman, Tofik Bakhramov, and the goal was given. The strike spurred the Three Lions to a 4-2 victory and their first, and only, major trophy.

Frank Lampard - England v Germany, 2010 World Cup

Some 44 years after Hurst's disputed strike helped England lift the World Cup, the Germany fans were handed some consolation in the form of Frank Lampard's infamous 'goal that never was'. With the Germans leading the round of 16 tie 2-1, Lampard blasted the ball in from 20 yards with what appeared to be the equaliser as his shot hit the crossbar before bouncing over the line. The referee and linesmen disagreed, however, and failed to award the strike, prompting cries of outrage from the England camp. Anger turned to all-too-familiar despair in the second half as Fabio Capello's side collapsed and crashed out in a 4-1 defeat.

Frank Lampard - Chelsea v Tottenham, 2011 Premier League

Lampard was involved in more goal-line controversy a year on from the World Cup but his 'goal' was far less clear cut. The linesman had an extremely difficult call to make when the Chelsea midfielder's shot was fumbled by error-prone Spurs goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes and the shot-stopper had to scramble to keep it out of the net. The officials allowed the strike to stand, despite replays showing the ball had not actually gone over the line, and the visitors left Stamford Bridge empty-handed after a 2-1 defeat.

Pedro Mendes - Manchester United v Tottenham, 2005 Premier League

Goalkeeper Roy Carroll somehow managed to get away with what should have been a calamitous spill at Old Trafford in 2005 when Spurs midfielder Pedro Mendes was denied a seemingly legitimate goal. The Portuguese belted a speculative 50-yard effort towards the United custodian which he somehow managed to toss backwards over his shoulder. The ball landed a good yard over the line before Carroll desperately clawed it out again but the match officials appeared none the wiser and play went on, much to Tottenham's incredulity.

Jonathan Howard - Chesterfield v Middlesbrough, 1997 FA Cup semi-finals

Third division Chesterfield truly captured the magic of the FA Cup when they stormed to the semis in 1997 but John Duncan's men were controversially denied a last-four upset against Middlesbrough. The Spireites found themselves 2-1 ahead at Wembley and looked on course to continue their fairytale run when Howard's close-range strike crashed against the crossbar and quite clearly landed behind the goal-line. Referee David Elleray begged to differ and the goal was disallowed, with Boro clawing back for an eventual 3-3 draw before they thrashed the underdogs 3-0 in the replay at Hillsborough.

Paddy Connolly - Dundee United v Partick Thistle, 1993 Scottish Premier League

One of the most unfathomable disallowed goals recorded occurred north of the border back in 1993, when United frontman Connolly's volleyed effort smashed into the net and hammered against the goal support. The visitors accepted the goal without question, with a Thistle defender even picking up the ball in recognition it had been scored, but referee Les Mottram inexplicably waved to play on, letting the blatant handball slide in the process.

John Eustace own-goal - Watford v Reading, 2008 Championship

Plenty of goals have been disallowed despite clearly crossing the line, but it's much rarer one is given when there is no evidence of anyone having actually scored. That's exactly what happened in the Championship clash between Watford and Reading in 2008, when the Royals netted one of the most bizarre 'goals' in history. After an attacking spell from the visitors, referee Stuart Atwell and his assistant Nigel Bannister awarded Reading a goal despite the ball crossing the line three yards outside the post. None of the Royals players even appealed for a goal, which should have given the officials a hint, but the strike stood.

Clive Allen - Coventry v Crystal Palace, 1980 First Division

Palace frontman Allen was denied what should have been a celebrated goal against Coventry after curling in a wonderful free-kick for the visitors from long range. The powerful effort surged into the top corner and smashed against the right-hand stanchion before coming out again, leading officials to believe it must have hit the woodwork. A difficult one to spot due to the sheer speed of Allen's strike, but nevertheless a sore point for Eagles fans as the hosts won 3-1.

Freddie Sears - Crystal Palace v Bristol City, 2009 Championship

Crystal Palace were involved in further goal-line controversy more recently, with the goal support once again proving to be their nemesis. Freddie Sears, on loan at Selhurst Park from West Ham, thought he had opened the scoring against Bristol City in the 30th minute when he fired home from close range. Unfortunately for the striker, the ball ricocheted off the goal stanchion and back out into play, with referee Rob Shoebridge waving to play on after obviously assuming it had pinged off the post. City rubbed salt into the wound when they went on to clinch a 90th-minute winner.

Sulley Muntari - AC Milan v Juventus, 2012 Serie A

The most recent disallowed strike to fuel the goal-line technology debate, other than Hill's effort for QPR, came in Italy in the showdown between title-chasers Milan and Juventus. The hosts were a goal ahead and looked on course for a decisive win when Muntari nodded a close-range header over the line. However, Juve goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon scrambled the ball back out and nothing was given. The Old Lady went on to clinch an equaliser and a crucial point in a match that could prove decisive to the Serie A title tussle.

Related Top Tens

Top ten Arsenal-Spurs

Sky Sports counts down ten of the best North London derbies ahead of Sunday's clash.

Morris Claiborne: Dallas cornerback was the first defensive player chosen

Top 10 NFL rookies

We pick out the star pupils from the 2012 draft class, including a pair of record breaking quarterbacks.

Eric Cantona: Has provided English football with some memorable moments

Top 10 Cantona Moments

Twenty years after joining Manchester United, we look back at Eric Cantona's top 10 memorable moments.

Eden Hazard: One of the summer's most high-profile signings

Top 10 new faces

We count down 10 summer signings who will get their first taste of the Premier League this weekend.

Who will follow in Manchester United¿s footsteps by winning this season¿s Community Shield?

Top Ten Community Shield

Thomas Hill takes a look back at 10 memorable moments from Community Shields gone by.

Luka Modric: At the centre of one of the summer's biggest transfer sagas

Top 10 transfer tales

Sky Sports counts down 10 players who are attracting persistent transfer speculation this summer.

Jack Butland: Hoping to impress with Team GB at the Olympics

Top 10 ones to watch

We look at 10 footballers worth keeping an eye on at this summer's London Olympics.

Joe Cole: Believes he has unfinished business at Liverpool

Top 10 point to prove

Sky Sports takes a look at 10 players who will feel they need to impress in the Premier League.

Top 10 England v Italy

Ahead of England's Euro 2012 quarter-final clash with Italy, we look at 10 previous contests.

Top 10 Euro upsets

With Euro 2012 up and running, we take a look at the top 10 upsets in the history of the event.