With the news that GoalRef and Hawk-Eye have signed licence agreements with FIFA to install goal-line technology systems worldwide, it seems like we’re taking a step forward from the dark days of the 2000’s and into a futuristic world, where Frank Lampard goals an ghost goals might suddenly be called the right way.

What about actually using the TV replays? Too much of a revolution. Maybe after the World Cup in Qatar. Be patient.

Victor Ikpeba

Nigeria got kinda stuffed in the 2000 Africa Cup of Nations, with one penalty missed after the Cameroonian goalkeeper stood way beyond the line, and later on with Ikpeba took the shot, bouncing off the crossbar and into the goal, beyond the line. It wasn’t allowed, and Cameroon went on to win the title.

Pedro Mendes

Another terrible refereeing decision, which not surprisingly went in the favor of Manchester United during the 2004-2005 season. Mendes scored one of the more famous “goals that never were” by sending the ball into the net from just before the halfway line, while a charging Roy Carroll didn’t make it in time to save the ball. Instead, he picked it out beyond the goal-line and parried it away. Luckily for him, the linesman and the referee allowed him to enjoy the benefit of the doubt.

The Frank Lampard Incidents

2010 World Cup in South Africa, England playing Germany. After 2-0 lead for the Germans, England begin a comeback with Matthew Upson scoring off a Steven Gerrard cross. Next? Frank Lampard sends a howler that beats Manuel Neuer, obvious to pretty much everyone around the world watching the game before the replay was shown, only to have the refereeing crew fail to acknowledge it. Germany went on to win 4-1.

Less than a year later, Frank Lampard and Chelsea enjoyed some dodgy officiating for the first time against Tottenham as his shot was taken badly by Gomes, Spurs’ keeper, but he managed to stop it from rolling into the net before it was completely beyond the line. Both the referee and the linesman weren’t in position to make the correct call, and they rules in Chelsea’s favor.

The versions we found on youtube were without a replay, so they don’t offer much, but here’s a link to 3news.co.nz with the replay that shows the Gomes managed to stop the ball just before it went over. In these cases, it’s hard to blame the officials because even on TV it was hard to determine after the first couple of looks. Goal line technology would have eliminated that argument.

More Chelsea Tottenham

A year later, and Chelsea enjoy another official making the same mistake, this time in the error filled weekend of the 2012 FA Cup semifinal. Chelsea enjoyed a 2-0 lead through Juan Mata’s shot simply bouncing off a body of players and beginning to celebrate. The ball was never close to crossing the line, but the referees and linesman reacted to Mata’s celebration instead of what they actually saw, like many officials do (going by the reaction instead of the event), unjustly rewarding Chelsea with the goal.

And on to the FA Cup Final

Chelsea again. This time saved by the referee in the 2012 FA Cup Final. Andy Carroll put Liverpool back in the match with a 64th minute goal after Chelsea took a 2-0 lead early in the second half. In the late stages of the match, Carroll’s header seemed to cross the line, but his celebrations didn’t change the referees decision of not allowing the goal, with Chelsea going on to win the match. Replays couldn’t even determine whether it did cross or not.

And the rest…

The 2-2 draw between Everton and Newcastle was a bizarre affair, as Everton had two goals wrongfully disallowed. One by Marouane Fellaini on grounds of an offside that never was and Victor Anichebe’s shot, crossing the line, but not showing up on the scoreboard.

And we can go back to last season. AC Milan did miss out on the title, falling behind referee-loved Juventus, and had two major incidents of a goal being disallowed. First in their match against Juventus, when Sulley Muntari scored a goal that should have given Milan a 2-0 lead and five weeks later, when Robinho was denied in a 1-1 draw against Catania.

And then there’s the most famous and controversial goal of all time. Geoff Hurst and his ghost goal for England in the 1966 World Cup Final against West Germany. Another one of those impossible to determine incidents, that Platini says add to the folklore of the sport.