Lionel Messi may not have played in Argentina’s significant defeat at the hands of Spain on Tuesday, but it got us at Pro Soccer Talk thinking about other historic results in the international game.
Again, Messi’s impact for the Albiceleste cannot be understated, but the Spanish comfortably put up six goals against the South American side, and should have had a seventh goal as well had it not been for a tame foul call on Sergio Ramos’ second-half finish.
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Here’s a look at several of the greatest (or worst) defeats in the history of international soccer.
Brazil 1-7 Germany — 2014 FIFA World Cup
Being a World Cup year, it’s hard not to bring up this historic result, which saw the eventual-World Cup winners thrash a Brazil side that was playing on home soil. Albeit with Neymar, the Brazilians were on the back foot from the opening whistle, and the Germans simply didn’t let up.
Four goals in a six-minute span capped off the performance for Jurgen Low’s side, including Toni Kroos’ quick brace.
Spain 6-1 Argentina — 2018 International Friendly
Isco’s brilliance shone through on Tuesday with a hat-trick against the South American giants, but the best goal of them all came in the 73rd minute when Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea recorded an assist on a long ball to Iago Aspas.
At one point, the television cameras focused on Messi walking away from his sky-box view of the match, and understandably so.
Australia 31-0 American Samoa — 2001 AFC World Cup qualifying
It wasn’t until 2006 that Australia snapped its drought of missing out on the World Cup, but this match currently lives on as the most significant defeat in international soccer history.
The Socceroos came, they saw, and they definitely conquered American Samoa. Unsurprisingly, this was the only meeting between the two nations in their history.
Tahiti 30-0 Cook Islands — 1971 South Pacific Games
Yes, you are reading that score line correct. In fairness to Cook Islands though, the country boasts a population of a whopping 18,000 people (roughly the equivalent of Davison County in South Dakota).
Cook Islands is currently ranked 194 in the latest FIFA World Rankings, and has never made it out of the group stage during the OFC Nations Cup.
Spain 12-1 Malta — 1984 UEFA Euro qualifying
It was one of the biggest turnarounds in history when considering what Spain needed to accomplish in order to qualify for the competition in 1984. The Spanish trailed group leaders Holland by two points in their qualifying group, and needed a victory plus an 110-goal swing in goal difference to overcome the Dutch.
Background: At the time, victories were awarded with two points instead of the modern-day three points.
In an improbable result, Spain finished level on points and aggregate goal difference with Holland, but the Spanish managed to top the Dutch based on superior number of goals scored (24).
Iran 19-0 Guam — 2002 World Cup qualifying
Iranian superstar Ali Daei still holds the record for international goals scored, but the star in this match was Charlton Athletic attacker Karim Bagheri, who netted a crazy six goals for the AFC side.
Meanwhile, the disappointing result for Guam marked the second time in less than a year that the small island nation suffered a defeat of 19-0 (against China PR).