Top Five: Crucial red cards

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Football News

Emmanuel Adebayor was enjoying a great weekend for Tottenham Hotspur at the weekend, before seeing red and costing his side the chance of victory against Arsenal.

The Togolese international's challenge on Spanish schemer Santi Cazorla was given the full treatment by referee Howard Webb, and added the player's name to a long list of those who have lost their head on the big stage.

Some of the world's best players have been guilty of committing a major offence when it matters, with the likes of Zinedine Zidane and David Beckham letting their respective countries down on the World Cup stage.

Other moments of madness have led to European and domestic disaster, with Didier Drogba one of the biggest examples.

And so, in 'honour' of Adebayor's sending-off against the Gunners at the weekend, GiveMeFootball picks five of the best - or worst - red card moments. Don't forget to have your say at the end of the article...

1. Zinadine Zidane - France v Italy - World Cup Final

If you're going to bow out of football, then do it in style.For some people, that might be lifting the World Cup trophy again.

For Zidane, it was to head-butt Marco Materazzi and leave a nation ultimately short in a crucial penalty shootout. Incredible madness from a football genius.

2. David Beckham - England v Argentina - World Cup second round

It's hard to believe that Beckham was once the most hated man in English football. A brilliant player with a pop star wife, the 'stupid boy' let down ten 'brave Lions' at France '98 - so the newspapers claimed - stupidly kicking-out at Diego Simeone and costing his side a chance at glory.

3. Didier Drogba - Chelsea v Manchester United - Champions League final

A petulant slap it might have been, but the mercurial Ivorian saw red for his actions during the all-Premier League final in Moscow, taking away one of the Blues' penalty takers before John Terry's tears in the 2007/08 shootout.

4. Wayne Rooney - England v Portugal - European Championships quarter-final

The young England striker had been the catalyst for his nation's success early in the competition, but his backward step into the mid-rift of Ricardo Carvalho proved pivotal before another penalty nightmare in a major tournament.

5. Jens Lehmann - Arsenal v Barcelona - Champions League final

The Gunners would have to be at their best to stand any chance of beating Barca in Paris, but Lehmann's early bath all-but ended any realistic chance of victory, with the German stopper chopping down Samuel Eto'o inside 15 minutes.

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Emmanuel Adebayor
Premier League
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