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10 Biggest Football Tantrums


We all understand how passionate footballers can be. With levels of adrenaline high and their fans roaring them on it’s probably acceptable for them to go a bit over the top sometimes. Some, though, just take this too far; resorting to tantrums you’re more used to seeing in a toddler, here’s a list of the best…


Cristiano Ronaldo vs Spain (2010)

It seems any type of footballing list isn’t complete without the Portuguese superstar. Famed for his record-breaking goal scoring abilities and incredible skills he also has a knack for producing some of the most extravagant tantrums when he’s on the pitch too. In this example he throws a brilliantly petty strop about teammate Nani causing his potential wonder goal to be called offside – fair enough? Probably, but hilarious to watch nonetheless.


Max Gradal vs Bristol Rovers (2010)

Gradal was instrumental in helping Leeds United gain promotion to the Championship in 2010, but his season ended on a sour note in the final game against Bristol Rovers. After receiving a red card for violent conduct, he then refused to leave the pitch, despite the best efforts of most of his teammates. Wisely, the Rovers players and the referee simply left him to seethe, complain and then, in a final act of defiance...angrily remove his shinpads. What a maniac.


Didier Drogba vs Barcelona (2011)

Drogba was certainly never one to hide from the spotlight and he definitely received a lot of media attention for this. After Barcelona scored a last gasp winner against Chelsea in the last minute of a ridiculous amount of extra time, Drogba just couldn’t help himself. It’s pretty evident just how he felt here…


Mido vs Senegal (2006)

Mido was a highly talented footballer, who unfortunately wasn't so skilled when it came to the areas of dealing with authority and work-rate. While playing for his country Egypt, in the African Nations' Cup semi-final in 2006, he was substituted by coach Hassa Shehata with the match poised at 1-1. Seemingly bewildered why anyone would not want his supreme skill on the pitch, he then launched into a quite magnificent hissy fit, angrily confronting Shehata, who gave as good as he got. Of course, with perfect comic timing, Egypt then immediately went up the field and scored, leaving Mido to look pretty stupid, and Shehata basking in the glory of a piece of apparent tactical genius.

Carlos Tevez vs Bayern Munich (2011)

Little Argentinian Carlos Tevez is never one to shy away from the spotlight. Famously switching Manchester United for their City rivals and then taunting his former teammates, he’s never been afraid of controversy. On a miserable Champions League night in Munich Tevez decided he was bigger than his manager and refused to come on as a substitute. Sulking, the then 27-year old replied to Roberto Mancini’s orders to warm up with a simple ‘No’ and continued to sulk on the bench. Soon after this he flew to Argentina without his club's permission where he remained to play golf and pick up his enormous pay packet. Mancini declared that he would never play for the club again. How did that one go Roberto?


Antonio Cassano vs Torino (2007)

Another childish (to say the least) Italian, Cassano’s career so far has been full of big game incidents that have made him famous, it’s just a shame it’s not for his footballing ability. It was hard to pick out just one tantrum from the angry Italian though, but we think this just about sums up his childish attitude. What did he get for his troubles? A yellow card which meant he missed the next game, fantastic!


William Gallas vs Birmingham (2009)

The then captain (you read that right) of Arsenal wasn’t afraid of showing his temper, evidently. Unfortunately for the Frenchman this display of spectacular sulking completely outshines anything else he ever did at the North London club. After James McFadden was awarded a last minute penalty Gallas, enraged burst into a folly of tears and stamping before rather calmly sitting down in the middle of the pitch. Perhaps Wenger told him to take a time-out?


Thierry Henry vs Newcastle (2001)

Henry is widely regarded as one of the best players to grace the Premier League; he also had a fantastic ability to sulk too. Henry was so upset that he probably forgot what his big tantrum was all about here but it got so heated that the Police even had to come out to separate the Frenchman from the officials. Eventually Henry’s teammate Martin Keown came to back him up, pushing the camera away but I think we’d all seen enough by then. Not va va voom, more le tantrum.


Eric Cantona vs Crystal Palace (1995)

The French footballing genius injected flair into the Premier League like never seen before but he was clearly a close admirer of Hong Kong Phooey too. After being sent off he couldn’t contain himself after taking some abuse from a Crystal Palace fan. What ensued was not so much of a tantrum but more a master class in how not to perform karate. Sorry Eric.


Paolo Di Canio vs Arsenal (1998)

Not surprisingly another Italian makes the list (they really can’t stop themselves) but this time its notorious hothead Di Canio. After an extremely silly clash with Martin Keown the Italian proceeded to direct his frustration towards the referee pushing him over in theatrical fashion. Totally losing it the former Sheffield Wednesday player then stormed off the pitch whilst probably exclaiming a number of expletives.


And if you thought that was bad Di Canio’s fiery nature followed him into management too. During his time at Swindon Town he decided to take out his frustration after losing on player Leon Clarke. Truly amazing behaviour, although fairly normal for Paolo.



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