The Premier League has been delivering thrilling matches, unpredictable events – and downright iconic moments ever since its inception – and that’s not even mentioning the drama on – and often off – the pitch.
There have been underdogs coming to snatch the title, fiery battles between players and the ref, and many, many great goals. Here are some of the most iconic moments from Premier League History.
Cantona tries Kung Fu
On January 25, 1995, Eric Cantona made headlines – for all the wrong reasons. During a Premier League match against Crystal Palace, Cantona was sent off and on his way to the tunnel, he launched a kung fu-style kick at a fan who had provoked him. Little did Cantona know that this move would shortly become one of the most infamous (and iconic) moments in the History Of The EPL and would result in him being banned for the rest of the season.
Beckham wins a goal from his own half
Just one year later in 1996, David Beckham scored one of the most iconic goals in the whole of the EPL. Playing for Manchester United against Wimbledon, Beckham noticed the goalkeeper off his line and took a shot from the halfway line.
The ball sailed over the goalkeeper’s head and into the net, leaving fans and commentators in disbelief. This goal solidified Beckham’s status as one of the greatest players of his generation and quickly shot him into the limelight where he remained in for the rest of his football career. And let’s not forget, Beckham managed this feat before Pele did, which further contributed to his glory.
Wayne Rooney beats Arsenal – at just 16 years old
In October 2002, 16-year-old Wayne Rooney announced himself to the world in the most iconic way possible: a truly unforgettable goal against Arsenal. While playing for Everton, Rooney received the ball just inside his own half.
Without so much of a second thought, he turned and unleashed a powerful shot that flew into the top corner of the net… that shot not only ended Arsenal’s 30-match unbeaten run – but made Rooney the youngest goalscorer in Premier League history.
Robbie Fowlers asks the Ref NOT to award a penalty
In such a display of sportsmanship rarely seen in football, Robbie Fowler asked the referee NOT to award a penalty against Arsenal in a match in 1997. Fowler (playing for Liverpool) had been tripped in the box by Arsenal goalkeeper David Seaman, but instead of accepting the penalty, Fowler told the referee that he had not been fouled. The referee changed his decision and Fowler’s act of honesty earned him enough widespread praise that it became another iconic moment in Premier League history.
Jose Mourinho calls himself a “special one”
In 2004, Jose Mourinho made quite the impression at his introductory press conference after being newly named the manager of Chelsea. He boldly referred to himself as the “special one,” a statement that quickly made waves and became a defining characteristic of his confident and charismatic personality. Mourinho’s leadership led Chelsea to numerous Premier League titles, solidifying his place as one of the most successful managers in the
league’s history – and well deserving to be on this list.
Alex Ferguson is struck by a pizza slice
In October 2004, a football match between Manchester United and Arsenal turned into one of the most bizarre incidents in the history of the EPL. The match ended with a 2-0 victory for Manchester United, but the real drama unfolded in the tunnel after the game.
A heated argument broke out between the two teams, and amidst the chaos, a pizza slice was hurled. The victim of said crust? Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson. This incident – dubbed the “Battle of the Buffet” – only added to the intense rivalry between the two teams. A rivalry that some would say has never settled down…
Aguero’s last-gasp play for the win
The final day of the 2011-2012 Premier League season will always be etched in memory due to Sergio Aguero’s dramatic last-minute winner. Manchester City required a triumph over Queens Park Rangers to clinch the title. With the game level at 2-2 during injury time, Aguero received the ball in the penalty area and confidently struck it into the back of the net. This goal ignited exuberant festivities and ensured Manchester City’s first league championship in
44 years, marking it as the most sensational conclusion to a Premier League season ever.
If there’s one thing about the EPL, it’s never boring. Whether it’s players trying out their martial arts in the tunnel, managers embarrassing themselves at press conferences, or even bits of takeaway food being flung at unsuspecting victims, these iconic moments in Premier League History will truly never be forgotten.
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