Top 5: Controversial goals

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Football News

Shakhtar Donetsk striker Luiz Adriano was widely criticised for his opportunistic, or unsporting depending on your point of view, goal against Nordsjaelland in the Champions League last night.

The Brazilian international may claim a misunderstanding, or perhaps a difference of footballing cultures, but most onlookers viewed his strike as a flagrant act of unsportsmanlike conduct.

A cheat, a crook, a stain on the football's unwritten code of conduct was the general consensus. Following the goal there was confusion as to whether Shakhtar would let their opponents score as a gesture of goodwill, an apology for the indiscretions of their teammate.

But Adriano seemed to take this as a personal affront, and waved his teammates to play on, to which they obliged. Nordsjaelland did equalise within minutes, but the Ukrainians went on to comfortably win the match 5-2, sealing their place in the Champions League knock-out round.

But Adriano's goal is not the first instance of such treachery.

GMF looks back at other recent examples…

Marc Overmars | Arsenal v Sheffield United 1999

Newly-signed Nwankwo Kanu found himself at the centre of the media storm after setting up Marc Overmars when the rest of the players had stopped to allow a throw-in to be played sportingly back to the Sheffield keeper Alan Kelly.

The match-winning strike sent the Blades wild with fury, and rightly so, but Arsenal eventually offered to replay the fixture. Which the Gunners duly won 2-1.

Luis Garcia | Liverpool v Chelsea 2005

The "ghost goal" still rankles Jose Mourinho, but Liverpool's 1-0 victory propelled them to the Champions League final, and a date with destiny.

The then-Chelsea boss was incensed at the decision to award the goal, despite inconclusive evidence - judge for yourself here.

Diego Maradona | Argentina v England 1986

The "Hand of God" stands alone, in England at least, as the most controversial goal of all time.

The Argentinian genius, all 5ft 5in of him, out-leaped the 6ft 1in Peter Shilton to head his country ahead in the World Cup quarter-final. Of course, replays showed he hand-balled it, and, against the backdrop of lingering tensions surrounding the Falklands war, it only stoked the rivalry.

Still, his match-winning goal minutes later was a peach - FIFA voted it as the greatest goal in the history of the World Cup.

Thierry Henry | France v Ireland 2009

At Arsenal, Thierry Henry will always be a legend, but to the Irish he will always be a sneaky cheat from the continent.

The France international booked his side's place at the World Cup in South Africa with a blatant handball, allowing him to tee up William Gallas for the extra-time equaliser.

He needn't have bothered - France were as woeful in South Africa as Ireland were two years later at Euro 2012.

Darren Bent | Sunderland v Liverpool 2009

The Sunderland striker has scored his fair share of goals in the Premier League, but few have been as fortuitous as this.

Against Liverpool back in 2009 the Stadium of Light was rocking. There were balloons, there was ear-achingly loud house music and there was beach balls - I can't imagine they were much use in Sunderland to be fair.

One of those beach balls eventually found it's way onto the pitch, and shimmied down towards Pepe Reina's six-yard box.

So when Bent shot towards goal, perhaps inevitably, it hit the punchy inflatable, and ricocheted into the Liverpool net. The Black Cats had their slice of luck, and went on to win 1-0.

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