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Three of the Worst Misses in Football History

August 18, 2015

- Grant Whittington

While we remember great goals with fondness, it is those close calls and incredible misses that earn the true affection of fans. To commemorate such raw human frailty, the team at Bethut has decided to make a list of its favourite and most memorable misses.

As a precursor, it is interesting to note that former Liverpool forward Ronnie Rosenthal’s now infamous miss against Aston Villa in 1992 is not included!

But go on then, here it is, just to whet the appetite a little…

So, without further ado, here are our worst misses in football history. Hands covering the eyes at the ready…

Ryan Giggs, Manchester United v Arsenal in 2003

In 1999, Ryan Giggs scored one of the great FA Cup goals after dribbling past the entire Arsenal defence to beat David Seaman and settle an epic semi-final reply. Less than four years later he endured a very different experience during a 5th round FA Cup tie against the same opponents at Old Trafford.

After ghosting in on goal behind a struggling Martin Keown, rounding the Arsenal keeper and dancing past a hapless Sol Campbell, Giggs was left with the simple task to pop the ball into an empty goal. However, what he did was side-foot the ball wildly over the gaping goal allowing Arsenal to pick up a 2-0 win and progress into the Quarter Final.

Yakubu, Nigeria v South Korea in 2010

While Yakubu was known as a prolific EPL forward after excellent stints at Portsmouth, Middlesbrough and Everton, he is best known outside of England for his miss at the 2010 World Cup. During a disappointing campaign for the Super Eagles (which saw the side eliminated at the group stage) Yakubu plumbed new depths of incompetency by rolling a finish past the outside of the South Korean post when it was probably harder to miss.

The fact that he was just two yards out at the time defied belief and this miss has arguably gone down as the single most shocking in the history of the World Cup and any football from the competition to a kickabout amongst 12-year-olds in the park.

Chris Iwelumo, Scotland v Norway in 2008

According to experts, individuals get just seven seconds to make a first impression. If this logic was applied to Chris Iwelumo’s debut for Scotland, however, the front man singularly failed to impress his employers and stake his claim for a regular starting place.

Coming on as a second half substitute in Scotland’s must-win World Cup qualifier with Norway, Iwelumo was soon presented with the opportunity to become an instant hero as the ball arrived at his feet just three yards in front of an open goal. Instead of converting, however, he screwed the ball wide of the far post and created an unfortunate piece of personal history!

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