In football, scoring a goal is one of the most euphoric things a player can experience, especially when the skill, context and surroundings are taken into consideration.
On the flip side, putting the ball into your own net is the stuff of nightmares – and there’s been some absolute zingers over the years.
From the unintentionally wonderful to the downright ridiculous, own goals have the ability to make a whole stadium laugh or cry depending who the unfortunate victim is.
But who are the players who have been unlucky enough to have scored the worst (or greatest) own goals of all time? Sportsmail takes a look.
Festus Baise’s Puskas-worthy blunder
When it comes to the ‘scorpion-kicks’ in football, fans will usually cast their minds to Rene Higuita’s unforgettable save against England or Olivier Giroud’s FIFA Puskas award-winning effort against Crystal Palace in 2017.
The timing and technique involved makes it one of the most visually pleasing things to witness in our beautiful game, but when done wrong, it can be the most embarrassing.
Festus Baise will know that exact feeling, given how he scored a scorpion kick of his own when playing for Hong Kong side Citizen AA back in December 2011.
With Citizen 3-0 up in their Hong Kong Premier League counter against Sun Hei, Baise just needed to keep a calm head and see out what should’ve been a relatively straight-forward final 15 minutes of the game.
Festus Baise lays on the floor after scoring one of the most extraordinary own goals in history
Baise scored a scorpion kick when playing for Hong Kong side Citizen in December 2011
The defender tried to intercept a cross sent into the box but ended up catching it with his heel
The ball looped high over his own goalkeeper and into the net late on in the game
But with 10 minutes to go, Baise cemented his place in football folklore for all the wrong reasons.
As Sun Hei’s Jack Sealy sent a cross into the box, centre back Baise tried intercepting the pass by throwing out a leg behind him while diving forward in an attempt to stop the ball from falling to an attacker lurking behind him.
But by swinging out his leg, Baise perfectly caught the ball with his heel, sending the it high into the air and over his goalkeeper’s head where it spectacularly landed into the back of the net.
The Nigerian defender was left to look up to the heavens while Sun Hei quickly collected the ball before retreating back to their own half with the comeback now on.
While Sun Hei did get another goal, Baise’s blushes were somewhat spared given how Citizen held on to secure a 3-2 win.
Nightmare debut for Radu Mitu
Jonathan Woodgate will be able to sympathise with this entry, given how he infamously scored an own goal on one of his debuts.
Moldovan goalkeeper Radu Mitu, who was just 18-years-old at the time, was just 10 minutes into his debut for Milsami Ursidos when he somehow threw the ball into his own net.
The blunderous moment came seconds after saving a low shot, which was going well wide, during a match against Rapid Ghidigici.
Moldovan goalkeeper Radu Mitu endured a shocking debut for Milsami Ursidos in 2013
While trying to throw the ball out, Mitu fails to release it correctly and chucks it into his net
Both sides are stunned by the blunder, making it a debut to remember for the worst reasons
But as he stood up and looked to get the ball rolling again, Mitu managed to somehow not release the ball when he wanted to, seeing him inadvertently chuck it past the post and into his own net.
And things went from bad to worse for Mitu. The red-faced keeper went on to concede a last-minute winner as his side lost the Moldovan First Division match 2-1.
A debut to remember, but sadly for all the wrong reasons.
Kramer’s 45-yard lob ends Gladbach’s 18-game winning streak
Poor old Christoph Kramer. You may remember him from the 2014 World Cup final when he was unfortunately knocked unconscious during the first half after a collision with Argentina’s Ezequiel Garay.
After being substituted in the 31st minute with concussion, the German midfielder had no recollection of his country winning the World Cup – the biggest game of his career.
And only a few months later, the Borussia Monchengladbach man will have wished he could have wiped his his freak own goal against Borussia Dortmund from his mind instead.
Under seemingly no pressure during a Bundesliga encounter, Kramer received the ball just inside the centre circle in his own half. He opted to play it back to his own goalkeeper – the safe choice.
Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Christoph Kramer (left) scored a horror own goal
The German midfielder receives the ball in the centre circle and sends it back to his keeper
But with far too much power on the pass, the ball soars through the air with too much height
The ball ends up going over Yan Sommer’s head and into the net, giving Dortmund the win
Only he didn’t elect a straight forward pass along the floor. He instead went for a chip – forgetting that Yan Sommer had moved further up the pitch to play the ball out from the back in the first place.
Completely caught out, Sommer tried to back peddle to reach Kramer’s beautifully weighted lob, but his efforts were to no avail. The ball was destined for the back of the net.
Sadly for Kramer and Borussia Monchengladbach the game finished 1-0 and the defeat ended their club-record 18-game unbeaten run.
Lee Dixon leaves Seaman stranded
While Kramer’s effort was spectacular, Lee Dixon can claim that he was catching his own goalkeeper out before it was cool.
The former defender now has the pleasure of calling out players’ blunders as a commentator these days but his ridiculous back-pass ended up costing Arsenal all three points against Coventry City in 1991.
With less than 60 seconds on the clock during the First Division encounter, Dixon collected a long ball punted up field and decided to give David Seaman an early touch of the ball.
After checking his passing options, and with absolutely no pressure on the ball, Dixon lifts the ball back towards his own goal for Seaman to collect.
Lee Dixon was the originator of lobbing his own goalkeeper, doing it way back in 1991
Dixon received the ball early on against Coventry, before passing it back to David Seaman
However, the Arsenal defender, like Kramer, put too much on his pass and lobbed his keeper
But the former England right back put so much lift on his pass that he somehow chipped his compatriot from 35 yards out, making it one of the quickest own goals of all time.
What made it worse was that the back-pass rule was still in effect at the time, which would have allowed Seaman to catch Dixon’s effort without being penalised.
While the Gunners did manage to equalise, the Sky Blues went on to win the contest 2-1, leaving Dixon to stew on his terrible error.
Tony Popovic’s Fratton Park wondergoal
It’s fair to see why Tony Popovic’s blunder against Portsmouth has been dubbed as one of the most beautiful own goals of all time.
Akin to Festus Baise’s effort, Crystal Palace’s centre back Popovic wowed the Fratton Park crowd for pulling off one of the greatest Premier League gaffes.
With Palace already down 2-1 in the top-flight encounter, Pompey’s Steve Stone played a ball towards the front post which Popovic looked to clear.
Tony Popovic scored one of the prettiest own goals while playing for Crystal Palace
While trying to stop a cross, the Palace defender caught the ball with his heel inside the box
In doing so, he sent the ball looping high into the air, with it heading for the far post
Popovic (centre, No 6) can only watch his effort go in off the post at Fratton Park
With some fizz on the cross, Popovic flung his leg in such an unconventional manner in an attempt to get the ball away from danger.
But moments later, the big Australian could lay claim to one of the most attractive own goals in football history after the ball loop high off his heel and into the back of the Palace net.
A moment nobody, apart from the Palace defender, will want to forget…
Jamie Pollock channels his inner-Gascoigne
The fixture between Manchester City and Queens Park Rangers will rightfully be remembered for Sergio Aguero’s last-gasp, title-winning strike – but that wasn’t the only time this fixture conjured up an unforgettable strike.
Back in April 1998, the two sides were both fighting for survival in the Football League’s Second Division with points coming at a premium.
The game was finely poised at 1-1 when Jamie Pollock pulled off a goal not too dissimilar to Paul Gascoigne’s wondergoal against Scotland at Euro ’96.
Having intercepted a cross from the right-hand side, Pollock, like Gascoigne, flicks the ball over one of his team-mate’s and opponent’s head while making his way into the box.
Man City’s Jamie Pollock intercepts a cross towards the top of the box in a game against QPR
Pollock then hits it high into the air over a team-mate and attacker’s head to keep control
While doing so, Pollock looks to head the ball back to his own goalkeeper
However, City keeper Martyn Margetson was off his line and couldn’t stop it from going in
However, unlike Gasocigne, Pollock was in his own box, rather than QPR’s.
As Martyn Margetson rushes out to collect the ball, Pollock sends his header looping over his own keeper and into the net, completing a very impressive sequence.
The goal put City 2-1 behind before they equalised through Lee Bradbury later on. However, the draw would later see City relegated to the third division for the first time in their history.
Milan Gajic’s Swiss stunner
You really have to wonder just what was going through Milan Gajic’s mind when he scored his rocket of an own goal for FC St Gallen back in 2014.
There have been some spectacular own goals down the years but the Serbian may just top the lot when it comes to actual technique – regardless of what he wanted from the outcome.
On the opening weekend of the Swiss Super League in the 2014-15 campaign, Gajic and his Young Boys team-mates were looking to get the season off to a promising start but Gajic was a bit too zealous with his approach.
The incident occurred during a failed St Gallen attack during the second half, which saw Young Boys retain possession on the edge of their own box.
Milan Gajic scored one of the most impressive own goals you’ll see during a Swiss league game
As the ball falls out of the air, Gajic hits the ball sweetly on the volley back towards his own goal
His effort flies past his goalkeeper and into the top corner of the goal back in the 2014 game
All strikers would have been proud of Gajic’s technique, who handed St Gallen the lead
But almost out of nowhere, Gajic inexplicably decides to run onto the dropping ball and smash it on the full volley into the the top corner of his own net, while giving the hosts a bizarre 2-1 lead.
The wonderstrike left the stadium, and Gajic for that matter, completely stunned with the midfielder surprising himself at what had just occurred.
Luckily for Gajic his blushes were saved after a last-gasp equaliser from Young Boys ensured a share of the spoils.
Djimi Traore left in a spin at Turf Moor
While Djimi Traore can boast having a Champions League winner’s medal to his name, the former Liverpool man also has one of the most bizarre own goals in history on his CV, too.
In a 2005 FA Cup tie with Burnley at Turf Moor, Traore lined up for the Reds with Rafa Benitez placing his trust in the Mali international in what was an inexperienced line-up on the day.
Traore was selected in order to bring composure to a backline that included David Raven and Zak Whitbread, but his footwork suggested he was severely lacking in that department.
As the ball was whipped into Liverpool’s six-yard box by Richard Chaplow, the Frenchman, under little pressure, clumsily backheeled the ball into his own net while spinning in a circle in an attempt to get rid.
Djimi Traore (top centre) has gone down in FA Cup history for his horrific own goal in 2005
The Frenchman, under little pressure, clumsily backheeled the ball into his own net
Traore’s Cruyff-like turn gone wrong ended up with ball rolling into the back of the net
The Liverpool man can only watch on in horror as the ball crosses the line at Turf Moor
The Cruyff-like turn gone wrong was the only goal of the game and saw Burnley, who were in the Championship at the time, dump the Premier League side out of the competition in the third round.
The goal even spawned it’s own football chant, which was sung along to the tune of ‘Blame It On the Boogie’ by the Jackson 5.
It went: ‘Don’t blame it on Biscan, don’t blame it on Finnan, don’t blame it on Hamann, blame it on Traore. He just can’t, he just can’t, he just can’t control his feet…’
Swing and a miss for Josue Duverger
As own goals go, this is just painful to watch.
During a CONCACAF World Cup qualifier between Haiti and Canada back in June, Haiti’s goalkeeper Josue Duverger managed to score the blunder of all blunders.
Having received the ball from his defender with plenty of time on his hands to decide what to do with it, Duverger initially miscontrols the ball which is now slowly rolling towards his goal line.
He can be somewhat forgiven for miscontrolling the ball initially. It’s not a problem, it happens all the time. Players miss the ball but a quick look down and composure is regained.
Haiti goalkeeper Josue Duverger scored one of the worst own goals of all-time against Canada
The goalkeeper was played a routine back-pass by his defensive team-mate Kevin LaFrance
The ball rolled under the keeper’s foot but he still had time to get back and make a clearance
But the Haiti keeper hit the ball with his standing foot and it agonisingly rolled into the net
However, for goalkeepers, it’s slightly different – a little more alien so to speak. And on this occasion, Duverger never recovered.
In a moment of panic, the Canada-born goalkeeper tries to thump the ball away from impending danger but his standing foot makes contact with the ball first before his intended kick clumsily just slices the ball across the line and into his own net.
While nearly all own goals are avoidable, this one is that little more excruciating, given he had plenty of chances to avoid catastrophe.
This will surely keep him awake at night.
Chris Brass nearly breaks his nose with THAT howler
While all of the entries on this list are worthy of being crowned as the worst own goal of all time, many would argue this one tops the pile.
Step forward Chris Brass.
It has to be said, this is actually one of the most impressive own goals, not because of the skill involved, but because of how he almost broke his own nose in the process.
But let’s set the scene. It’s April 22, 2006 and Bury have made the journey to the north east to face Darlington in a League Two match.
Just eight minutes into the encounter, Darlington mount an attack and have the ball at the top of the Bury area.
Chris Brass scored arguably the most memorable own goal of all time for Darlington
The Bury man smashed the ball off his own face and past a young Kasper Schmeichel in goal
Brass nearly broke his own nose as a result of the incident, adding further insult to injury
Darlington don’t do much with the chance and send a ball high into the box to seemingly no-one.
In an attempt to clear the ball, Brass ran into the box to thump the ball away but only managed to smash it into his own face and past a young Kasper Schmeichel to give Darlo the lead.
Brass nearly broke his own nose as a result of his hilariously botched clearance, just to add to the humiliation.
However, Bury managed to fight back and claw all three points, winning the encounter 3-2.
While the two clubs that have faded into obscurity in recent years, both will be immortalised in football folklore for this gaffe alone.