Many consider the Premier League to be the best football league in the world. With teams like Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham, there has never been a shortage of talent on display in England’s top flight.
Throughout the years we’ve been witness to plenty of controversial moments involving players such as Roy Keane, Patrick Vieira, Luis Suarez and Eric Cantona to name a few. As Saint and Greavsie used to say, it’s a ‘funny old game’ with so many unpredictable twists and turns and different characters especially in the Premier League that controversial moments are inevitable and it would be kind of boring if they didn’t. Those who bet on football matches don’t tend to like these unpredictable moments that can change a game and make the difference from winning money to losing money. Not even the best football betting tips expert like The VIP Gambler would be able to predict the following 10 outcomes!
1. Bizarre Nani goal vs. Tottenham at Old Trafford
During a game in 2011, Nani scored a bizarre goal at Old Trafford against Spurs. The Tottenham defence and goalkeeper thought that they had earned a free kick, but the referee hadn’t blown his whistle. Nani played to the whistle and put the ball in an empty net, giving Manchester United a narrow win.
2. Bent Balloon Goal vs. Liverpool
Remember this one? Sunderland striker Darren Bent took a shot from the edge of the box which seemed fairly harmless at the time. However, the ball took a wicked deflection off a balloon on the pitch and left Liverpool goalie Renia helpless. Wonder what the bookies made of this? The goal was given to Bent but the goalie clearly had the shot covered until the balloon got involved!
3. Cantona Kung Fu Kick
During the 1994/1995 season, Eric Cantona was subject to abuse at the hands of a Crystal Palace fan. Instead of controlling his emotions, the Manchester United icon went into the crowd and laid a kung fu kick on the supporter. Cantona received a one year suspension and Manchester United went on to lose the league title.
4. Luis Suarez Racist Abuse at Patrice Evra
During a heated clash at Anfield in 2011, Luis Suarez reportedly dished out racist abuse to Manchester United’s Patrice Evra. Suarez uttered the words, “negro, negro, do not touch me you dirty negro”, along with other obscenities. Suarez received a six game ban for racist abuse.
5. Arsenal attack Ruud van Nistelrooy
During Arsenal’s invincible season, there was a controversial game with Manchester United at Old Trafford. With the score at 0-0, Ruud van Nistelrooy stepped up and missed a last-minute penalty. However, the controversy occurred when Arsenal’s players attacked van Nistelrooy on the field, in anger at his actions earlier in the game. A year later, Ruud van Nistelrooy got his revenge as Manchester United ended Arsenal’s 49 game unbeaten run at Old Trafford. He scored from the penalty spot that day in a 2-0 win.
6. Roy Keane/Patrick Vieira tunnel spat
Right before Manchester United’s game with Arsenal at Highbury, Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira got involved in a heated spat inside the stadium.
7. Roy Keane’s Ugly Tackle on Alf Haaland
Early in Roy Keane’s career, he injured himself while attempting a tackle on Alf Haaland of Manchester City. Keane never forgave Haaland, which is why he got his revenge at Old Trafford a few years later. Keane’s nasty tackle ended Haaland’s career and earned the Manchester United captain a lengthy ban.
8. Dyer/Bowyer Bust Up
As the game was getting away from Newcastle, two of their players came to blows with each other. Lee Bowyer and Kieron Dyer were throwing punches at each other on the field and got sent off by the referee, much to Newcastle United’s embarrassment.
9. Emmanuel Adebayor Celebration vs. Arsenal
After securing a transfer from Arsenal to Manchester City, Emmanuel Adebayor met his former club a few weeks later. He scored in a 4-2 City win, but it was his full length celebration near the Arsenal fans that drew controversy. It also earned him a ban.
10. John Terry/Anton Ferdinand Racism Row
John Terry mouthed racist words to Anton Ferdinand during an on-field argument in a game between Chelsea and QPR. The police brought charges against Terry, but a court cleared him of all charges the following summer. However, he received a three match ban from the Football Association.