After a hard-fought tournament, that saw several twists and turns along the way, France lifted the World Cup 2018 trophy in Moscow on Sunday. France defeated Croatia 4-2 to win their first World Cup trophy after a span of 20 years under coach Didier Deschamps, who coincidentally, won the trophy as captain in 1998 for Les Bleus. Over the course of the one-month in Russia, several players scripted their names in history books for scoring some of the most unforgettable goals in the tournament’s history. From delicious free kicks, to devastating counter-attacks to unbelievable curves; the World Cup 2018 saw it all.
Here are some of the best goals from the World Cup 2018:
1) Toni Kroos, Germany vs Sweden
— Papi DJ🌹 (@ShootDJ) July 6, 2018
A free kick in the injury time and Toni Kroos stepped up to take it. The brilliantly executed set piece saw Marco Reus setting the kick up for the Real Madrid midfielder, as his shot curved from a tricky angle and went on to hit the top right corner of the net.
2) Luka Modric, Croatia vs Argentina
Luka Modric is a master in the midfield. He tricked Argentina’s midfielder, going from left to right, then changing direction, and then returning back to take a shot from some distance. Bang, on target.
3) Benjamin Pavard, France vs Argentina
Benjamin’s Pavard goal was touted to be the goal of the tournament by pundits. He received a pass outside the box from Lucas Hernandez and he just went for a left-footed kick. The ball took a curve and flew like a rocket straight towards the top left corner of the net.
4) Angel Di Maria, Argentina vs France
Andel Di Maria’s goal against France was a pure delight. He received a pass at least 35 yards away from the goal. He picked it up with a right and then with plenty of space around him, set it up for himself on his stronger left feet and took the kick. Result? Top right corner. Hugo LLoris’ diving save was not enough to save that one.
5) Denis Cheryshev, Russia vs Croatia
— Abdalla Waqti 🇸🇴 (@abdalla_waqti) July 12, 2018
Russia’s Denis Cheryshev impressed throughout the tournament, getting four goals. But his shot against Croatia in the quarterfinal will be the one remembered for a long time. Surrounded by strong Croatia midfield, he did a one-two pass with Artem Dzyuba and then decided to take the shot from 35 yards out. It went over Danijel Subasic into the goal.
6) Kevin De Bruyne, Belgium vs Brazil
Kevin de Bruyne has a knack of scoring goals in big games. He scored a blinder against Brazil. Getting the ball just outside the six-yard box, he decided to take the shoot which ended in the bottom left corner. No chance for Alisson Becker to save that.
7) Cristiano Ronaldo, Portugal vs Spain
Cristiano Ronaldo scored from a sublime curling free-kick that went over Spain’s defensive wall and turned inwards to hit the top right corner of the net. The famed goalkeeper David De Gea could only saw the ball going back at the back of the net as he remained frozen to the spot.
8) Philippe Coutinho, Brazil vs Switzerland
Switzerland made the mistake of giving Philippe Coutinho just a little bit of space outside the box. As soon as he received the ball, he took advantage of the gap and curled a right-footed strike into the top right corner of the net. Goalkeeper Yann Sommer had no choice but to watch the ball go into the back of the nets.
9) Dries Mertens, Belgium vs Panama
— InterYaSkriniar (@InterYaSkriniar) June 18, 2018
Napoli’s famed striker Dries Mertens stunned the world with a tremendous loop volley that went straight on the bottom-left corner, leaving no chance for Panama goalkeeper Jaime Penedo to save. The angle from which the shot was taken was simply breathtaking, as Mertens was standing on edge of the penalty box.
10) Nacer Chadli, Begium vs Japan
— Football GIFs (@FootballGIFs4) July 2, 2018
Perhaps, the best counter-attacking move in the entire World Cup 2018 took place in Belgium’s encounter with Japan. With the scored tied at 2-2 at the final minute of the match, goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois set up the move which saw Kevin De Bruyne passing the ball to Thomas Vermaelen, who crossed it inside the box. Romelu Lukaku left the ball to let it go straight to Nacer Chadli who scored the winning goal.
These goals are guaranteed to remember for a long time. Will there be more such stunning sights in Qatar, four years later? The footballing fans certainly hope so.