The English Premier League weekend got off to an attention grabbing start on Friday night as Southampton flopped to a nine goal home thrashing at the hands of Leicester City in what is the biggest home defeat ever recorded in the English top tier. The defeat was so harsh that the Southampton players and coaching staff decided to redeem themselves, by donating their salary of the last Friday to a charity.
They’re not the first – and won’t be the last – to suffer a mauling on the soccer pitch but as the old saying goes, ‘a problem shared is a problem halved’ so here we’re going to look at some of the game’s other humiliations.
NUMBER 5 – ENGLAND 1-2 ICELAND, 2016
Okay, so this just proves that humiliation isn’t solely based on the margin of victory. In the last 16 of the Euro 2016 finals England went into the game with everyone expecting a routine win and a fourth minute Wayne Rooney goal did nothing to change that perception. Iceland, who had a part time dentist amongst their coaching set up, always ‘believed’ though and two goals in 12 minutes flipped the match on its head. The England players couldn’t re-establish their foothold in the game with their star-studded squad incapable of stringing simple passes together and crashed out in miserable fashion.
NUMBER 4 – MANCHESTER UNITED 9-0 IPSWICH, 1995
When Ipswich made the trip to Old Trafford the league table suggested a big home win might be on the cards but the Blues had beaten United earlier in the season so there would have been a glimmer of hope for the visitors. Fast forward 90 minutes though and we had a Premier League record defeat on our hands after poor old Craig Forrest had to pick the ball out of his net nine times. The Canadian keeper probably still has nightmares about Andy Cole, who bagged five of the goals. Ipswich were relegated the same season.
NUMBER 3 – ENGLAND 9-3 SCOTLAND, 1961
Any defeat to a rival is tough to swallow but the least you expect in a derby game is fight and spirit. The Scottish fans got none of that though as the Tartan Army rolled over in front of nearly 100,000 fans at Wembley. The 9-3 score line was all the more shocking given at one point the Scots had momentum on their side after pulling two goals back to make it just 3-2. Still a game lasts 90 minutes and England were brutally relentless as they added a further six.
NUMBER 2 – AUSTRALIA 31-0 AMERICAN SAMOA, 2001
Australia came into this World Cup qualifier game in April 2001 off the back of a 22-0 win over Tonga (yes twenty-two) and although American Samoa were forced to field a considerably weakened team due to passport issues, they actually held firm against the Socceroos’ for the opening 10 minutes. Unfortunately, the next 80 minutes saw Australia score an astonishing 31 goals, which is an international record and their striker Archie Thompson, who scored 28 international goals in total, netted 13 of them.
NUMBER 1 – BRAZIL 1-7 GERMANY, 2014
When you’re hosting the World Cup and reach a semi-final it’s potentially the biggest moment of your career but in 2014 the carnival atmosphere inside Estádio Governador Magalhães Pinto, known as Mineirao, was quickly hushed by the Germans as they raced into a five goal lead in the first half. Anyone can lose a game of soccer but in a game of this magnitude for the score to end up 7-1 is embarrassing – especially when Germany took their foot of the gas for the entire second period. For a nation as good as Brazil, it will always be a blemish on their record, and it took place in their own back yard with the whole world watching.
There you have it, five games and five shambolic displays. Some of them were performances that saw underdogs rise to the occasion whilst others were simply score lines that wouldn’t look out of place if you were betting on the Super Bowl 2020 results but, most importantly, none will ever be forgotten .