On Tuesday night, Andy Carroll scored two of the most incredible goals of his career.
During the match against Fulham, Carroll majestically leapt into the air inside the opposition box to execute a perfect overhead bicycle kick. The ball flew past the goalkeeper into the bottom corner to level the game, or so it seemed.
As Carroll turned to celebrate the linesman raised his flag and the goal was taken away for an offside. Heartbreaking.
But rather than let his head drop, the striker continued to fight back against Fulham and shortly after, another chance fell his way.
The 6’4 striker took down a diagonal ball on his chest before producing a stunning left-footed volley from outside the box that rocketed straight into the top corner. It was a goal that any footballer would have been proud to have on their highlight reel.
However, in a horrible twist of fate, the linesman’s flag was raised once again as Carroll had run to chest the ball from an offside position.
Carroll’s night didn’t get any better after that as Reading went on to lose the game in spectacular fashion as they were hammered 7-0 by the visitors from Craven Cottage.
But the ex-Newcastle striker is far from the first player to have a spectacular goal chalked off, let’s take a look at some of the best disallowed goals of all time.
Frank Lampard vs Germany (2010)
In 2010, England were trailing Germany 2-1 in the round of 16 at the World Cup. It was 37 minutes into the game when Chelsea legend Frank Lampard snatched an opportunity to hit the ball on a half-volley after spotting Manuel Neuer a few yards off his goal line.
The ball looped over the German keeper, crashing off the underside of the crossbar and into the Germany goal. Neuer caught the ball as it bounced back out of his goal, and as the England players began to celebrate their equaliser they quickly realised the referee had not signalled for a goal.
Replays would show the ball had crossed the line and by at least a foot, but with no goal-line technology at the tournament, the goal was never given. England would eventually lose to the Germans 4-1, crashing out of the competition.
Cristiano Ronaldo vs Spain (2010)
With the game still hanging in the balance at 0-0, Cristiano Ronaldo picked up a pass from a teammate around 35 yards away from the goal.
The Portuguese striker darted past the first defender before executing a perfectly timed cutback to send the player sliding in the opposite direction, he then performed a cheeky ball roll before scooping the ball over the goalkeeper with the outside of his right foot.
It was an incredible solo effort, however, Ronaldo’s teammate, Nani, preferred to make the goal a team effort. As the ball dropped into the net the winger couldn’t resist heading it across the line. The problem being that Nani was stood in an offside position as Ronaldo released the ball, and the goal was therefore disallowed. Ronaldo was (rightly) enraged with his compatriot, stomping on the ground and gesturing furiously with his arms towards the winger.
Gareth Bale vs PSG (2019)
In the 35th minute, Gareth Bale took control of a bouncing ball just outside the area. The Welshman lobbed a defender and kept the ball in the air with an amazing juggling act before volleying home a magnificent looping strike over Keylor Navas.
The goal was initially given but a VAR review chalked off the goal after it was deemed Bale had controlled the ball with his hand in the build-up.
Mario Balotelli vs Cagliari (2013)
Mario Balotelli is no stranger to a spectacular goal, having scored plenty throughout his career. The controversial Italian has had plenty of crazy moments on and off the pitch.
In a match against Cagliari in 2013, Balotelli had already equalised with a late penalty. But it appeared the striker had scored an incredible stoppage-time winner after he scissor kicked a ball floated in from the head of Robinho.
But Balotelli’s celebrations were quickly cut short as the referee instantly blew his whistle and ruled that the ball had already gone out of play before Robinho headed it across the box.
Thierry Henry vs Blackburn (2003)
In a match against Blackburn during Arsenal’s invincible campaign, French striker Thierry Henry attempted the cheekiest goal on this list.
As the Blackburn goalkeeper, Brad Friedel, attempted to dropkick the ball, Henry stuck out a foot before the American made contact. Henry successfully snatched the ball before dribbling towards an empty net and slotting it home.
But unfortunately for the Frenchman, the referee had instantly blown the whistle after witnessing how Henry had obtained the ball, and the play was dead before the ball even crossed the line.
Thiago Silva vs Nice (2013)
Thiago Silva is not known for scoring goals. The PSG captain has always been a powerhouse in his own half of the pitch but rarely gets an opportunity to score from open play.
During a league game against Nice in 2013 the Brazilian defender made an impressive run into the opposition box. As the ball was rolled in front of him the goalkeeper made a split-second decision to leave his line and attempt to swat the ball out of reach.
But after he made poor contact with the ball it continued to roll behind him towards the touchline. Silva jumped the keeper and sprinted at the ball before somehow sweeping the ball into the net from an impossible angle. Unfortunately though for the defender the ball was deemed to have gone out of bounds before he managed to scoop it into the net.
Peter Schmeichel vs Wimbledon (1997)
During a 1997 FA Cup match against Wimbledon, there were 60 seconds left on the clock and Manchester United were trailing 1-0 when the Reds won a corner. Schmeichel decided to take the risk and get himself into the opposition box.
The ball flew towards the edge of the area but was headed back into the six-yard box, where the Danish goalkeeper was waiting in the danger zone. The 6’3 keeper somehow adjusted himself quickly and bicycle kicked the ball into the bottom corner.
The crowd went absolutely wild before the referee blew his whistle to signal the linesman’s flag. The score remained 1-0 and the Red Devils dropped out of the cup in dramatic fashion.
Don Hutchison vs Liverpool (2000)
Everton vs Liverpool is always guaranteed to provide fireworks. It was a tense 0-0 game with goalscoring chances in short supply, but Everton thought they had a late winner after a spectacular error from the Liverpool goalkeeper.
Sander Westerveld was taking a free kick from just outside his own area when he bizarrely blasted the ball into the back of a retreating Don Hutchison. The ball ricocheted off the midfielder’s back and bounced over Westerveld straight back into his goal.
But the referee disallowed the goal after claiming he had already blown the final whistle. Despite the angry protests from the Everton players, referee Graham Poll stuck by his decision.
Kevin Keegan vs Manchester United (1981)
In a match between United and Southampton in 1981, Keegan scored a glorious scissor-kick volley that flew into the top corner.
After a ball was floated into the box David Armstrong nodded it out wide to Keegan who had taken up a position with acres of space. Keegan took his time and kept his eyes on the ball before smashing the volley past the United keeper.
But sadly for Keegan, Armstrong had been in an offside position before heading the ball to his teammate. After a quick discussion with the linesman, the referee chalked off the goal.
Pedro Mendes vs Manchester United (2005)
Manchester United were let off once again in 2005 after Pedro Mendes attempted an audacious shot from the halfway line.
The Tottenham player spotted the United keeper far off his line and as the ball bounced towards him he couldn’t resist attempting a shot at goal. It was a picturesque strike that appeared to be looping perfectly into the goal but Roy Carroll seemed to have got back in time to calmly catch the ball.
However, the ball bounced out of the goalkeeper’s arms and back over his shoulder before he spun around and swatted the ball away from his net. Replays showed the ball had crossed the line by around 2ft but incredibly the goal wasn’t spotted by the referee or linesman.