What makes soccer unique in many ways is the fact that not many goals are scored, unless it’s Germany versus Brazil of course. Sorry Brazil. But no, really, few goals are scored so they mean that much more. Soccer goal celebrations are some of the best in all of sports.
Credit goes to FC Barcelona for the image above – perhaps the best striking force ever assembled on one soccer team.
Let’s look at some of the best soccer goal celebrations from the past few years. There’s nothing quite like scoring a goal in soccer, whether it’s in the World Cup, the Champions League or even on your Sunday soccer league. There’s not much better than seeing the soccer ball hit the back of the net.
In soccer, with goals so hard to come by, your patience is rewarded with a celebration that brings everyone off their seats, and sometimes tears of joy, a good laugh, or a even a player running into the stands, as Tevez did while at West Ham.
Leo Messi’s best goal celebrations at FC Barcelona.
Whether it’s the last minute goal celebration that earns a victory. The game tying goal in the final minutes, as Messi scored for Barcelona versus Real Madrid, or the goal against your former club or the derby goal. The list goes on and on of goals of greater importance and meaning. The goal against a club that dropped you – sort of a revenge goal. In the end though, they are all inspiring.
Here’s a list of some of the great soccer goal celebrations – more to come. I do wonder where players get their goal celebrations sometimes – they could come from anywhere really, just something that inspires them and pushes them on the soccer field and to score a goal.
Top 20 Goal Celebrations (compilation)
Best Goal Celebrations (compilation)
Robbie Folwer (inappropriate sniffing of the touchline)
- Stephen Ireland Drops Shorts
Robbie Keane (always emotional and usually a cartwheel or two)
Rivaldo’s Bicycle Kick (takes them to the Champions League with a hat trick)
- Tardelli Goal Celebration (1982 World Cup – copied by Grosso in 2006)
- Nani Flip Celebration
- The Joy of African Football
- Henry Pulls Shorts Up Celebration
- Jose Antonio Reyes Gets Bit
Soccer is made fun of for its lack of goals but really that is what makes the game unique. It’s like waiting for an eclipse. No, that’s too much of an exaggeration, but the reward is similar. The level of skill required to score the goal is proportional to the celebration in most cases, although there are many factors that give a goal more weight and the ensuing celebration more pop.
Mohamed Salah has scored 50 Premier League goals in 69 games for Liverpool – quicker than any other player in the club’s history. Watch his first 50 Premier League strikes for the Reds here! Salah also has some great goal celebrations!
Promotion or Demotion Soccer Goal Celebrations
A game winning goal in the World Cup of course is bigger than a league goal. But, with soccer, the fan is so educated about the game that all the work that goes into the final result is part of the goal. The fan knows that there are goals that might give a team a promotion in the EPL or drop them, creating a frenzy in an English city in late Spring. Or a goal and win might give their team a place in the top four and a Champions League birth.
Recently, both Tevez and Dempsey scored to keep their respective teams in the EPL.
I like to see a 3-2 games but I’ve seen games with no goals that are just as rewarding–nearly let’s say. What we want to see is good soccer and then good goals, obviously. More so though fans want to see the underdog to win. Fans want the player who is struggling to succeed. Fans want players to play hard and not much else–that’s all they have to do to earn their respect. When they see a player giving as much effort as possible they want to celebrate with that player with a goal. And they do.
Quote: ‘What annoys me about some players today is this personal glory thing. They score a goal and then knock players out of the road so they can have their own private, personal gratification and praise from the fans. It’s ugly seeing these kind of celebrations.’ – Alex Ferguson of Manchester United
Fans love seeing a player speak their own language and score a goal after struggling through injury for so long and after scoring more own goals than goals for their team. This was the case with Jonathan Woodgate. He battled a number of injuries and on his debut scored an own goal no less. But, later, he scored a goal off of a corner for Real Madrid and the fans responded in kind with a standing ovation–joining in his relief, celebrating the joy after such a difficult time.
Veterans earn applause by way of longevity to the team. If a player who has earned respect from the fans for the years they’ve played with the club, scores, the adulation is tenfold. Soccer is also interesting in this aspect because it rewards a player with a testimonial and not just applause but money.
What other ways are goal celebrations built up? There’s the remembrance and honoring of a loved one who has passed away with a point into the sky or the imaginable rocking of a baby in your arms like Bebeto of Brazil.
A goal is the ultimate release. A forward who’s been in a goal drought and scores an important goal or a say a player who has been dropped by the manager but then earns his place again by playing hard in practice and then scores, see David Beckham for Real Madrid.
However, we want to see a game that at least verges on a goal. A lot of going back and forth and chances, posts, cross bars, near misses and fantastic saves. Nothing stale but something the boils up in anticipation of that goal–and that corresponding, proportional and ensuing celebration.
A goal means the chance for the crowd to sing and hold up their teams flag in honor of a team’s hard work. A beautiful site to see and hear, whether it’s Liverpool’s ‘never walk alone’ or a serenade by one of the Italian giants to a favorite talisman. We all want to receive applause and give it as well. Just put in the hard work and the goals and clapping will come.