Dang, 2018. With the best World Cup in recent memory and the various thrills n’ spills of the Premier League and the millions of other football competitions throughout the world, you really delivered. Amongst other things, we saw someone other than Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi win the Ballon D’Or for the first time in a decade, England reach a World Cup semi final and Mark Hughes become the first fella to be sacked by two Prem teams in one calendar year.
Us football-loving punters bore witness to plenty this past year… Plenty of impressive things and plenty of quite awful things. But let’s forget all that for a moment and cast our minds back across the last twelve months and celebrate the truly nuts events that went down.
Here are our nine favourite mad moments from The Beautiful Game in 2018:
9. Kyle Walker’s Magnificently Mad Manchester Mug-Off
How did I miss this during the derby, Walker is hilarious hahaha pic.twitter.com/dWll1gYtCz
— Emmett (@TheEmmett_) January 3, 2018
Okay, so technically this happened in December 2017, but the clip didn’t get noticed and go viral until 2018. In it we see Kyle Walker taking his time and running down the clock by completely humiliating a ballboy. Ah, footballers and their ‘bantz’, eh?
Oh, alright. FINE. It is pretty funny.
8. Man City’s Mad Oggie From 50 Yards
Oh wow, a 50 yard own goal from Man City's ladies. What were they thinking?pic.twitter.com/Wws1LYUKlv
— Ball Street (@BallStreet) October 1, 2018
No, not Pep’s lot. This is the Man City Women’s team. This opening (own) goal takes a pretty wicked bounce, admittedly. So we’ll let Abbie McManus off. Luckily City rallied and won the game 3-2. Only losing to an OG like that would’ve been a real crippler. Ouch.
7. Mehdi Benatia’s Mad, Sad Snub
Picking up your Serie A winners medal on TV… That’s got to be a cool moment, right? Right. Well, at least it is if you can avoid getting handshake snubbed by two models. Medhi Benatia found out to his cost back in May that the models the Italian league hire are just for show and aren’t allowed to interact with the players.
Sad thing here is – Benatia ends up looking a bit of a mug, but in reality? He was being polite! Poor guy.
6. Massively Mad Mersyside Mistake
This one ain’t all that funny if you’re an Evertonian, but to Liverpool fans and everyone else except Everton types, Jordan Pickford’s friends and family and the England goalkeeping coach, this recent nause-up is pretty darn amusing. We’ve watched this clip a thousand times and we’ve still absolutely no bloody idea what he’s up to at all. Utter madness.
5. Mad Mainz Goalie’s Ghost Pass
Funny Mainz goalkeeper pic.twitter.com/1twV2TKGJD
— Amadu Yakubu (@AmaduYakubu11) November 6, 2017
Ever seen a footballer attempt to pass the penalty spot instead of the ball? Well, you have now.
4. Mad Dog Goalkeeper
What a save by Stray Given pic.twitter.com/QXcrwKRDQj
— Elliot Hackney (@ElliotHackney) December 4, 2018
Is this the little seen ‘Hand of Dog’…? When tier two Argentinian sides Juventud Unida and Defensores de Belgrano met, the Belgrano goalkeeper went barking mad as he fluffed a clearance, leading to an obvious goal. Except it wasn’t an obvious goal because, well, a dog run on the pitch and stopped the shot. Luckily for Juventud they went on to win the game 3-0, so no one set up a petition to have the dog put down or anything. PHEW.
3. Mad Michy’s Mad Celebration
He’s very lovable, is Michy Batshuayi. So lovable in fact that this daft business only earned him number three on our list. Ordinarily if England go down one-nil in a major tournament to a close rival and a player who didn’t even score the goal wildly celebrates like a goon and boots the ball into the net, misses, hits the post and the balls flies back into his face hurting him, we’d never stop laughing. But he’s a nice bloke, so we only sort of loved this.
2. Mad Maradona’s Mega Mad Interview
Ah, Mazza. Maradona certainly provided lots of entertainment during the World Cup over the summer, didn’t he? He was ‘enjoying himself’ in his trademark way throughout Argentina games and keeping us all amused. But none of that eye-bulging silliness compared to this… The single greatest interview in football history.
1. Milad Mohammadi’s Mad, Bad Throw-in
I still often think of the time Iran were losing 1-0 to Spain in the World Cup with just seconds of injury time left and Milad Mohammadi did this. What a sassy legend. pic.twitter.com/1cyF39nqbp
— Nooruddean (@BeardedGenius) October 6, 2018
Russia 2018 was ace. It had it all. Goals, controversies, an Iranian man trying – and failing – the most elaborate last ditch throw-in routine ever…
God we love this. Like, a lot.
Football. You’ve gotta love it. Roll on 2019!