50 things we loved in 2021: Alisson, Messi, Bailly, Havertz, Keane…

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Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson celebrates scoring their side's second goal of the game with team-mates during the Premier League match at The Hawthorns, West Bromwich. Picture date: Sunday May 16, 2021.

It’s been another weird year off the football pitch, but a cracker on it. We’ve had high drama at club level and two major international tournaments to keep us entertained, and we’ve even been let back into stadiums.

The pan-continental Euros, if not an entirely sensible idea, were a brilliant release after the misery many have endured of late. And in South America, Lionel Messi finally, finally lifted a major trophy with Argentina.

We’ve been treated to some spectacular goals, some heart-warming moments and a fair bit of the downright bizarre too.

Here, we round up 50 things we absolutely loved in 2021.

This Scotland fan

Oh, mate.

Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink

The only thing this clip is missing is popcorn.

Gareth Southgate

Gareth Southgate wrote a letter and we all cried a little bit.

Patrick Schick

‘A delivery for Mr Schick.’


‘Yes, sir. One Puskas Award. Sign here please.’

Plymouth Argyle

In fact, hang on, can we reroute that delivery, please?


Honestly, we’ll be watching this on repeat well into next year.

Fulham players

This was just lovely.


Getting trolled by your own sponsor is about as embarrassing as it gets…

Pacos de Ferreira

…or at least we thought it was until we saw this.

Allan Saint-Maximin

He’s so tricky he even sends camera operators for hotdogs.

Andros Townsend

The greatest shithouse moment of 2021.

Andriy Yarmolenko

Not quite Townsend, but a funny riposte to Ronaldo all the same.

Lionel Messi & Neymar


Thomas Muller

Germans don’t do missed chances at major tournaments. But if they did, they’d probably be the best missed chances in the world.

Sam Kerr

The Chelsea striker was having none of the idiot’s antics.

Michail Antonio

This was weird. But weird in a good way.

Romelu Lukaku

Do you reckon Big Rom was a bit happy when Inter won Serie A?


English football fans

The anti-Super League protests actually worked and made us believe fans had a little bit of power in football again. For about two days. But it was nice.

Gary Neville

The mainstream voice we’ve needed.

Jamie Carragher

World class bickerers.

Neil Warnock

Who needs selfies when you can carry around a bum bag full of photos of yourself ready to sign?

These people

After some arseholes racially abused the three England players who missed penalties in the Euro 2020 final, this lot restored our faith in humanity.


Sean Dyche

The Iceman Cometh.

Kieran Tierney

See above.

Roy Keane v Harry Maguire

“Eh, uh, oh, apologies to the fans.”

Roy Keane v Harry Maguire round 2

Talk about kicking a man while he’s down.

Harry Maguire’s photobomb

Six months on, we can just about laugh about this now.

Rob Beckett

The real MVP of Euro 2020.

Euro 2020

2021 peaked when Spain 5-3 Croatia and France 3-3 Switzerland happened on the same day.

READ: 28 iconic moments that tell the story of a magnificent Euro 2020

Carlo Ancelotti

The air of a man who knew he’d be seeing in 2022 leading Real Madrid at the top of La Liga.

Big Sam

His spell at West Brom is best forgotten. Apart from this.

Emma Hayes and Ian Wright

Heady days.

Rio Ferdinand

Perfect comic timing.

Micah Richards

The most infectious laugh on telly.


The Leeds fan in our office still watches this daily.

Kai Havertz

The perfect response.

Xherdan Shaqiri

Bless him.

Sergio Aguero

We already miss watching him.

Mohamed Salah

A privilege to watch him in 2021.

Robert Lewandowski

41 Bundesliga goals in 2020-21. 69 goals in the calendar year. Ridiculous.


A header any No.9 would be proud of.

Eric Bailly

Pure box office.

Joel Matip

A riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.

Victor Orta

More directors of football should act like they’ve had 10 pints on an away day, we reckon.

Charlie Patino

We can’t wait to see what 2022 brings for the Arsenal wonderkid.

This goal

We support Indonesia now.

This rabona

Eat your heart out, Erik Lamela.

This penalty

RB Leipzig signed him. Their scouts must have missed this.

This ballboy

Sensational scenes.

This fan

Never change, football.

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