So many great footballers go forgotten. Despite the likes of Josef Bican and Arthur Friedenreich achieving brilliant records throughout their football careers, little is heard of two of football’s greatest ever goalscorers.
It seems to take something truly incredible for somebody to go down in football history - not just goals, but records, and lots of them. Take Pelé, for example, who ended his football career with more than 1000 goals to his name and three World Cup winners’ medals - more than any other player in the history of the beautiful game. Lionel Messi, whose 73 goals in the 2011/12 campaign made him the highest single-season goalscorer in the history of European football, is another example, as is Cristiano Ronaldo.
The brilliant duo have racked up plenty of trophies, awards and record over the years. However, there are still some records that they are unlikely to break.
Most red cards in a game
Nestor Guillen isn’t one of football’s iconic names. Yet, he resides in football’s Hall of Fame alongside the likes of Pelé and Lionel Messi.
It take a lot for a referee to get their moment in the spotlight. Take Tom Henning Ovrebo, for example, who was at the centre of the heated Champions League semi-final clash between Barcelona and Chelsea back in 2009. Or Mark Clattenburg, who took charge of the 2016 FA Cup final, 2016 Champions League final and 2016 European Championship final all within the space of a few months.
Guillen joined the list back in 2012, when he took control of a game in the fourth tier of Colombia’s football league system, played between rivals Teniente Farina and Libertad.
Things appeared to be going smoothly, until each side were shown a red card late on following a bust-up between two players. However, rather than rushing to separate the two men, team-mates and staff members rushed onto the pitch to partake in a mass brawl that saw the officials flee to their dressing rooms.
Only two red cards were officially shown before the game was suspended. However, in his post-match report, Guillen decided to dismiss all 22 players, as well as the seven present substitutes from each side, resulting in a whopping 36 dismissals.
Longest unbeaten run
Much is made of Arsenal’s Invincibles, who went the entirety of 2003/04 season unbeaten in the Premier League. It is undeniably a fantastic achievement, especially given the amount of competition in the division at the time, with the likes of Newcastle United and Liverpool pushing for the title, the ever-present Manchester United continuing to challenge and Roman Abramovich’s many millions taking Chelsea to the next level.
However, despite going an incredible 49 games unbeaten, Arsenal were unable to top the record set by Celtic back in 1917, when their two year spell as an unbreakable team came to an end.
Playing under iconic manager Willie Maley, Celtic recorded a 2-0 victory over top flight side Kilmarnock F.C. back in November 1915, which would kick-start a phenomenal run which helped them to secure four consecutive Scottish Football League titles.
They wouldn’t taste defeat again until April 1917, when they suffered a 2-0 defeat at the hands of the same Kilmarnock side that they had begun their journey against. The defeat means that their incredible run ended after 62 games - a record that the club have since held for more than a century.
Goalkeepers are always involved in goalscoring moments, but they’re usually lamenting them, rather than celebrating. Unless you consider Paraguayan shot-stopper José Luis Chilavert’s 36 goal haul during his three years with Spanish side Real Zaragoza back in the 1980s, or the prolific exploits of Rogério Ceni during his two decade spell as Sao Paulo’s chief penalty-taker and penalty saver, goalkeepers are not goalscorers. That is why it comes as such as shock when a goalkeeper does make it onto the scoresheet.
It does happen, as Asmir Begovic found out when he became the fifth goalkeeper in Premier League history to find the opposition’s net back in 2013 after just 13 seconds of play. The Bosnian international hoofed a back-pass upfield, hoping to pick out one of his Stoke City teammates. Yet, the ball bounced over everybody, including Southampton keeper Artur Boruc to put Stoke ahead.
The goal saw Begovic join Peter Schmeichel, Brad Friedel, Paul Robinson and Tim Howard in the history books. Yet, his feat was singled out as the best of the best the following year, as the Guinness World Records confirmed it to the the longest goal ever scored, from a distance of 91.9 metres.“I feel amazing to be honoured in this way and as a goalkeeper I didn’t expect this to happen, not for this type of record anyway - I will take it though and enjoy it,” Begovic admitted after being presented with his award.
In a league system that has featured some of the greatest goalscorers in history - Eric Cantona, Thierry Henry, Alan Shearer, Cristiano Ronaldo - the award for the quickest hat-trick in Football League history goes to James Hayter, a man best known for a decade spent with Bournemouth in the third tier of English football.
The unexpected feat came in 2004. Hayter had been making plenty of appearances from the bench throughout the 2003/04 season, yet goals had been hard to come by for the 25-year-old, who had scored just six times in 30 games, with the season slowly drawing to a close.
It didn’t appear that the May 24th would be Hayter’s day, as he was left on the bench while Bournemouth ran riot against Wrexham, notching up a 3-0 lead. However, a six minute cameo would offer Hayter just enough time to bag the fastest hat-trick in Football League history.While Hayter holds the record for the fastest hat-trick in the professional game, the fastest recorded three goal haul was scored by Alex Torr, a sports science student and avid Sunday League footballer, who set the bar at three goals in just 70 seconds back in 2013.
Longest penalty shoot-out
Penalty shoot-outs are a real nail-biting affair, but, thankfully, most are over after just ten kicks of the ball. Yet, fans of Namibian professional sides KK Palace and FC Civics had to endure an agonising wait to find out who would triumph in the 2005 Bidvest Namibian Cup final.
The shoot-out seemingly went on for an eternity, eventually finishing in a 17-16 victory for KK Palace. However, it wasn’t a matter of waiting for somebody to scuff their shot - there were plenty of chances for both teams to win it throughout. All in all, a record breaking 48 penalty kicks were taken, meaning that both teams missed a total of seven times before Civics’ eighth miss handed the trophy to their opponents.
Despite taking the most kicks, these two teams don’t hold the record for the most goals scored in a single penalty shootout. That record was set at 39 goals by Argentine sides Argeninos Juniors and Racing club back in 1988, before Danish clubs Sundsore IF and Nykobing Mors matched it in 2015.
Quickest five goals in the Bundesliga
By September 2015, Robert Lewandowski had already made a name for himself as one of the greatest strikers in world football. Following his 74 goals in 131 games at Borussia Dortmund, he had kicked off his Bayern Munich spell with a brilliant goalscoring tally of 20 goals in just 35 matches. However, the best was still yet to come.
Lewandowski had started the 2015/16 campaign remarkably well, scoring three goals in his first four Bundesliga matches. Although, an ankle injury forced him to sit out the fifth game of the season against SV Darmstadt. He seemed likely to spend the rest of the next game, against league heavyweights Wolfsburg, on the bench too. However, with the club 1-0 down at half-time, Bayern needed their star man to turn things around.
It took just six minutes for the Polish goalscorer to level the score, before a second followed a minute later and a third came after another 2 minutes, making Lewandowski the fastest hat-trick scorer in Bundesliga history, having scored three in just three minutes and 22 seconds.
He wasn’t done there. Two more goals followed in quick succession, leaving Lewandowski with an incredible haul of five goals in just nine minutes.
By the end of the year, Lewandowski had been presented with no less than four Guinness World Record awards - the fastest Bundesliga hat-trick, the fastest four goals in a Bundesliga match, the fastest five goals in a Bundesliga match and the most goals scored by a Bundesliga substitute.
Most goals in a game
It isn’t often that you see women footballers outdo their male counterparts, but Malika-e-Noor certainly showed them how it's done, with a 14 goal haul that ranks first for the number of goals scored in a single match within the professional game.
Surprisingly, given her achievements, you probably haven’t heard of her. Malika-e-Noor is a Pakistani footballer who, at the age of just 17, netted an incredible 14 times in Young Rising Star’s 25-0 victory over Margala in the Pakistani Women’s Football Championship, the highest tier in the women’s game in Pakistan.
Her closest challengers are Cosmina Dusa, who scored 13 times in a single Romanian Superliga match in 2010 and John Petrie, who achieved the same tally in a Scottish Cup match, way back in 1885.
It is hard to say who holds the record for the quickest goal in football history, given that the methods used to record times are often unreliable. However, the title is thought to belong to either Serbian youth footballer Vuk Bakic, whose goal was recorded at 2.2 seconds, or Nawaf Al Abed, who scored in a Under-23s game after just two seconds back in 2009.
Al Abed’s goal was somewhat fortunate. The youngster spotted the opposition goalkeeper some way off of his line before the game commenced and decided to take the chance, sending the ball sailing across the field into the back of the Al Shoalah goal.
Despite the fact that the game has since been deemed to be invalid, due to the fact that a number of the players present were over the eligible age, Al Abed’s goal is most often deemed to be the fastest goal in the history of the beautiful game.
While Nawaf Al Abed may hold the record for the fastest goal, Brazilian midfielder Ronny Heberson holds the record for the fastest shot. This one isn’t based on the amount of time it took him to score, but the speed at which the ball travelled after leaving his foot.
Like Al Abed’s award, this one is also particularly difficult to judge, given that it is extremely difficult to calculate the speed of the moving ball. The particular incident that earned Ronny acclaim for his ferocious power came in a 2006 Portuguese league match, in which he is said to have smashed a free-kick into the goal at an astonishing 137 mph, which would mean that the ball took just a quarter of a second to hit the back of the net.
The speed of Ronny’s shot has since been widely debated, with some claiming to have calculated the speed at closer to the 90 mph mark, which, if true, would make former Barcelona star Ronald Koeman the record-holder, with his 117 mph free-kick against Sampdoria in the 1991/92 European Cup final.