Football's 11 most shocking tackles of all time
7. Harald Schumacher on Patrick Battiston
Germany vs France, 1982 World Cup semi-final
The iconic foul.
With the score at 1-1 in the 1982 World Cup semi-final, France substitute Patrick Battiston bore down on goal, chasing a long ball that had also alerted German keeper Harald Schumacher.
The two raced towards each other at speed, but neither backed out of this football version of chicken. Battiston was focused on the ball, and reached it first, firing past the onrushing custodian. Schumacher – obviously the smarter of the two – decided to ignore the ball completely, and concentrated on surviving a crash by leaping and turning his body into his opponent.
Schumacher slammed into the Frenchman, catching him full in the face and immediately knocking out three teeth. Battiston was prone on the turf, toothless and with vertebrae damage, but the referee decided no foul had been committed and resumed play, much to the astonishment of players and fans alike.
"I thought he was dead," said Michel Platini, "because he had no pulse and looked pale."
Germany eventually won the game on penalties after a 3-3 extra-time draw, and when the goalkeeper was informed of the damage he had caused he simply replied: "If that's all that's wrong with him, I'll pay him the crowns."
6. Axel Witsel on Marcin Wasilewski
Standard Liege vs Anderlecht 2009
Derby matches are always hot-blooded affairs, and the clashes between Standard Liege and Anderlecht are no different. But this fixture featured one terrible incident that has taken their rivalry to another level.
The season before, then-starlet Axel Witsel was the hero who scored the decisive penalty in Standard's play-off win against Anderlecht that brought their second successive title. In this derby, however, he committed one of the most hideous football tackles ever recorded on camera, with a savage lunge on Anderlecht defender Marcin Wasilewski leaving the Pole with a double open-tibia fracture, and the watching world wincing, appalled.
An unbelievably lenient €250 fine and 10-game ban followed – one that was soon reduced to eight matches, much to the consternation of Belgium and most of the football world. To further endear himself to the Anderlecht faithful, he leapt into another terrible challenge in the return derby (on Roland Juhasz) and see red once again.
Next page: Lobotomy, anyone?