5 Biggest Upsets in World Cup History

by on June 18, 2010
in FIFA, Football History


Football is nothing without a spice of most shocking and unexpected results. The upsets in football World Cup have always been brouhaha for the football fans. ‘You never know’ is the most common phrase which is used by the football fans whenever it comes to weak teams playing stronger ones. The upset defeats of the strong teams elevate the popularity of the weaker team and bring it into the media limelight. Saying that weaker teams are a source of sizzle in group matches makes sense.

Here is a list of the top 5 upsets in the World Cup history:

Portugal vs. United States in 2002

Who would have thought that the Portuguese team with players like Rui Costa, Luis Figo and Pautela would lose to the United States team in 2002 FIFA World Cup in a group match? US player John O’Brien scored a memorable goal in the first 36 minutes of the game. His goal was followed after by Jorge Costa – who sent the ball in his own goalpost – and Brian McBride; that gave a lead to US of 3-0 over Portugal. Portugal scored only 2 goals which led US team into the quarterfinals of that World Cup.

France vs. Senegal in 2002

In 2002, France was defending the Championship along with being the European Champion as well. Their team was at peak at that time and much was speculated that France would win the second straight Championship too. But Senegal had some other plans. They participated for the very first time in 1982 World Cup and astounded the football world with their win over the defending champions France by 1-0.

Cameroon V Argentina in 1990

Argentina, with their superstar Maradona, were all set to rock the football world in 1990 World Cup as the defending champions. Argentina were to play their first match against Cameroon. Cameron were playing their second World Cup in 1990. Andre Kana-Biyik, player of Cameroon got a red card which reduced the men to 10. But Cameroon was determined to stun the world and they did it by defeating the defending champions of Argentina by 1-0. Cameroon became the first African country to make their way to quarterfinals of World Cup.

Spain V. Northern Ireland in 1982

In 1982, it was pretty much sure that Spain would make its way into the next round. They only required winning one match against Northern Ireland to make their way through. But as people say “you never know”, Irish player Gerry Armstrong scored a goal due to Spanish goalkeeper’s mistake. This allowed Ireland to lead 1-0 and they qualified for the next round.

Algeria V. West Germany in 1982

Algeria could be considered the only team which in its very first World Cup tournament played an extremely solid game against Germany who were the defending European champions at that time. Algeria led by 2-1 win over West Germany.

These and many such upsets have been occurring in football World Cup. You can estimate the passion of fans that many of them committed suicide due to their teams losing matches.

Crazy football, isn’t it?

Keep supporting!


2 Responses to “5 Biggest Upsets in World Cup History”
  1. R3dian says:

    Classic upsets in the history of world cup . Specially the one between France and Senegal the defending champions lost badly and out of the tournament in group stages

  2. Hey this is a great story. I’m going to email this to my friends. I stumbled on this while surfing for some popular lyrics, I’ll be sure to visit regularly. thanks for sharing.

Share Your Thoughts

You might also likeclose