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10 of the worst penalty fails ever


Liverpool's Steven Gerrard hands the ball to team-mate Daniel Sturridge (left) to take a penalty kick which he blazed over

Liverpool's Steven Gerrard hands the ball to team-mate Daniel Sturridge (left) to take a penalty kick which he blazed over


Liverpool's Steven Gerrard hands the ball to team-mate Daniel Sturridge (left) to take a penalty kick which he blazed over

After Daniel Sturridges's horrendous penalty miss for Liverpool against Everton at Anfield last night that denied him a hat-trick, we decided to look at 10 other memorable penalty fails.

1. Thierry Henry and Robert Pires

When Robert Pires stepped up to take his second penalty of the day against Manchester City most people expected him to dispatch it as efficiently as he had his first.

Instead however, he and Thierry Henry tried to perform something that, judging by the poor execution, had only been practised a couple of times on the training ground.

As Pires dummied the ball he hit it by mistake meaning he couldn't touch it again to lay it off to his striker who just ran past the ball while City cleared. Never before has the accusation that Arsenal too often try to pass the ball into the net rung so true.


2. Dimitar Berbatov

If you were to sum up Dimitar Berbatov's style of play in one word it would almost certainly be lethargic and the Bulgarian showed this flaw nowhere better than in Manchester United's penalty shootout with Everton in the FA Cup in 2009.

Tim Cahill had missed the opening penalty meaning were Berba to score he would give United the upper hand.

Instead the striker perfectly translated his infamous character trait into his connection and virtually passed the ball to the grateful Toffees' keeper, Tim Howard, allowing Everton to recover and win the shootout.

3. Peter Devine

When some players miss a penalty they turn around and glare at the spot blaming the surface.

Poor Peter Devine, when he entered the penalty taking hall of fame, could only hang his head in shame and grasp the leg that he had hurt while executing one of the most spectacular trips in 12-yard history.

A lesser man would have abandoned his run up when his tumble started a couple of steps before the ball. Not Peter, he admirably soldiered on somehow keeping his balance and managing to strike the ball with the sole of his foot.

From that moment on Peter Devine and his penalty that didn't make the six yard box were immortalised in football legend.

4. Amir Sayoud

Only one man can rival Peter Devine in the 'penalty spot tumble' category.

Amir Sayoud, playing for Al Ahly in the Egyptian cup, was reminded all too cruelly of the danger of trying to be clever when taking on the keeper from the spot.

As he ran up to take his kick he paused before he struck the ball to see if the keeper moved, so far so good. Next however it all went wrong.

The keeper moved to his right and Sayoud took his chance but instead of passing the ball into the net, the Egyptian got his feet caught up, his standing foot slipped and he tumbled to the turf lamely prodding the ball goalwards in the process.

To add insult to injury Sayoud was also booked for his stuttering run-up.

5. Jay Rodriguez

Jay Rodriguez had a moment to forget against Nottingham Forest as his penalty ended up virtually on the corner flag.

The young Southampton striker, who was playing for Burnley at the time, ran up to take his spot kick but slipped in spectacular fashion at the crucial moment.

As he fell he struck the ball into what should have been his grounded foot and it shot high into the air, spinning towards the corner flag, leaving the Forest fans jubilant.

Fortunately for Rodriguez he later atoned for his miss by scoring his second goal in the match that finished 2-0.

6. John Terry

John Terry's penalty miss in the 2008 Champions League final has to be one of the most epic.

On such a big occasion the pressure was palpable.

It was bucketing it down with rain in Moscow that evening, and slipping on the turf must have been in the back of all the players' minds when it came down to penalties.

Unfortunately the slippery surface got the better of Terry and as his feet slid from beneath him the Chelsea captain sent his penalty onto the outside of the post.

Ultimately and unfortunately for Terry this mishap cost him and his side the Champions League final.

7. David Beckham

David Beckham has had several bad penalty misses, but this one from 2004 is undoubtedly his worst.

On another dodgy pitch Beckham stepped up, and England's hopes rested on their icon once again. It wasn't to be. As Beckham is striking the ball, the penalty spot seems to give way and Beckham balloons the ball over the crossbar.

It gets England's penalty shootout against Portugal off to a dreadful start, and it resulted in the Three Lions getting knocked out of the tournament as Portugal progressed to the semi-finals.

8. Ayyegbeni Yakubu

Ayyegbeni Yakubu's tame effort against Liverpool in 2012 is one of the most pathetic penalty attempts ever. Blackburn were 2-0 down but were given a lifeline back into the game when keeper Doni was sent off for bringing down Junior Hoilett in the box.

"The Yak" stutters up to the penalty spot looking very unsure of himself, he proceeds to pass the ball very limply to the bottom left of the goal and substitute keeper Brad Jones happily scoops up the ball. The miss was costly and Blackburn ended up losing 3-2.

9. Andrea Pirlo

Andrea Pirlo's Panenka penalty doesn't always go to plan. In a pre-season friendly between AC Milan and Barcelona in 2010 Pirlo stepped up and decided to try and cheekily chip the ball into the goal.

On this occasion the keeper Jose Manuel Pinto didn't move and the ball floated slowly into his arms. Pirlo was left red-faced and AC Milan were out of the competition.

10. Gary McAllister

For all the talk of England's penalty woe, sometimes things do go in their favour.

During Euro 96 Terry Venables' side came up against the Auld Enemy. Leading 1-0 and doggedly holding on to it Scotland won a penalty.

David Seaman saved from Gary McAllister and England then went 2-0 up thanks to one of the greatest ever Wembley goals, courtesy of Paul Gascoigne. But there was more to the penalty save than that.

Just before McAllister strikes it, the ball is seen to move ever so slightly - something which undoubtedly helped Seaman to save the shot. Later, the celebrity psychic and friend of the late Michael Jackson, Uri Geller, claimed to have moved the ball using his mind power.

Online Editors