World Cup Top Tenner Hand of God Suarez bite Banks save best matches

Martin Ainstein’s tour of the World Cup host cities arrives at the scene of the Battle of Stalingrad, the largest and bloodiest of World War II.

The World Cup has showcased the best and worst football has to offer throughout its history. 

Here, we take a look at the good, the bad and the ugly from tournaments gone by. Each week a new Top Tenner will be released in the lead up to the big kickoff in Russia. 

April 2 — Controversies

The 10 biggest controversies, including Diego Maradona’s Hand of God goal.

April 9 —  Upsets

The biggest tournament upsets, led by the Maracanazo.

April 16 — Bloopers

Roberto Baggio’s penalty, Graham Poll’s three-card trick and Rene Higuita’s walkabout feature in our bloopers reel.

April 23 — Goalkeepers

Some of the best goalkeepers to grace the game feature in our Top Tenner of World Cup saves, including THAT one from Gordon Banks vs. Pele.

April 30 — Songs

The World Cup is not just known for action on the pitch — some great moments have occurred away from the field of play and in the recording studio.

Diego Maradona's Hand of God goal is arguably the most infamous in history.
Diego Maradona’s Hand of God goal is arguably the most infamous in history.

May 7 — Villains

The World Cup is a tournament where heroes are made, but it’s also one that has seen its fair share of villains.

Still to come …

May 14 — Violence 

The World Cup is home to the finest feats of skill and athleticism in football, but it has also seen many of the most violent and acts in history.

May 21 — Misdemeanours 

Here, we take a look at those whose World Cup was cut short for a range of misdemeanours. We look at 10 of the “best”.

May 25 — Mascots 

From the cuddly to the surreal to the conceptual art projects, the World Cup mascots down the years have been a rather mixed bunch.

May 28 — Nation Rivalries 

World Cup rivalries between some of the biggest nations in the world are allowed to fester for years, making it a special occasion when they meet.

May 4 — Flops

The World Cup has seen some of the finest teams playing the best football ever known, but it has also showcased some of the biggest flops.

June 6 — Player Rivalries 

David Beckham vs. Diego Simeone, Zinedine Zidane vs. Marco Materazzi and Pele vs. Diego Maradona are in our best World Cup player rivalries.

June 11 — Shootouts 

Some of the cruellest World Cup moments have come from 12 yards out. Here we will look at 10 of the best penalty shootouts from down the years …

June 13 — Opening Matches

The World Cup is here! And in the last in our series, the Top Tenner concludes with the best opening matches the tournament has seen.

Nick Miller is a writer for ESPN FC, covering Premier League and European football. Follow him on Twitter @NickMiller79.