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The world is gearing up for the final of the 2022 Qatar World Cup which will be played between France and Argentina, and kick off at 15:00 GMT at the Lusail Iconic Stadium.
One way to add some extra spice to a World Cup final is if there is a red card on the biggest possible stage in football.
In fact, of the five players to ever be sent off in a World Cup final, four of them have been French or Argentinian.
Pedro Monzon – 1990
The Italia ’90 final was a very ugly game of football and it saw Argentine lose 1-0 against West Germany. The winning goal was a penalty from Andreas Brehme in the 85th minute which sparked all manner of anger among the Argentinians.
Before that though, Pedro Monzon had come on as a sub at half time. 20 minutes later, he became the first player to be sent off in a World Cup final for a studs-up challenge on Jurgen Klinsmann. That made the task much harder for Argentina.
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Gustavo Dezotti – 1990
They weren’t done there. Tempers were extremely high after Brehme had scored his penalty and that led Gustavo Dezotti to attempt a neck-high challenge on Jurgen Kohler. While already on a yellow card, he was shown a straight red card for the wrestling move.
West Germany held onto the victory against nine players and won their final World Cup before unification.
Marcel Desailly – 1998
Argentina had raced into a two-point lead when it came to red cards in World Cup finals, so France could see that they had work to do. In the 1998 final on home soil, Les Bleus were 2-0 up against Brazil as the second half began.
Already on a yellow card, Marcel Desailly started the second half by getting a second yellow for dissent. Luckily for him, France were able to control the game and won 3-0 after Emmanuel Petit added a third in stoppage time.
Zinedine Zidane – 2006
Zinedine Zidane made it 2-2 between France and Argentina as he saw red, in more ways than one, in the 2006 World Cup final in Germany.
Everyone knows this story. It was Zidane’s final ever game of an incredible career. Italy’s Marco Materazzi said something that angered Zidane, and the Frenchman planted his head square into Materazzi’s chest. Straight red, and the historic shot of Zidane walking past the World Cup trophy was born.
Italy went on to win the final and it was hard not to apportion a lot of that blame on Zidane’s red card.
John Heitinga – 2010
The fact that there was only one red card in the 2010 World Cup final in South Africa is something that still baffles football fans. Referee Howard Webb had a torrid time as the Netherlands and Spain kicked seven bells out of each other throughout the match.
John Heitinga had received a yellow card in the second half and was shown another in extra time with the score at 0-0. Heitinga fouled Andres Iniesta and was sent off, and it was Iniesta who would go on to score the winning goal in the 116th minute, sparking wild celebrations.
This article was updated 4 months ago