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Original Issue


The World Cup's most successful debutant wasn't Iceland or Panama—it was the video assistant referee. VAR rectified major errors in Russia (think twice before your next dive, Neymar), but victims of poor officiating didn't always have the luxury of replay review. We looked back at some infamous Cup calls and assessed their influence on the tournament.

Argentina vs. England • 1986

Diego Maradona's opening goal in the quarterfinal blatantly came off his hand—the most famous blown call in soccer history. The Hand of God proved decisive in a 2--1 win over England, helping Argentina win its second Cup in three years.


U.S. vs. Germany • 2002

Germany's Torsten Frings preserved his team's quarterfinal lead with a clear handball on the goal line. The U.S. lost 1--0.


Argentina vs. Mexico • 2010

Carlos Tevez was obviously offside when he headed in Argentina's first goal in a 3--1 round-of-16 win.


Italy vs. Australia • 2006

Down to 10 men, eventual champion Italy advanced on a late penalty kick after Fabio Grosso's dubious fall in the box.


West Germany vs. Argentina • 1990

Argentina saw red on a dive by future U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann. Up a man, the Germans won 1--0.