10 Craziest World Cup Red Cards

There's nothing worse than seeing red on the biggest stage of all.

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For any footballer, going to a World Cup is a dream come true. But that dream can swiftly transform into a nightmare for players who aren't able to keep their cool. There have been some incredible sendings off throughout the tournament's history, with even the greatest players seeing red on the game's biggest stage.

Playing in such a big event must be a highly emotional experience, and some players let their emotions get the better of them, resulting in some career-defining and tournament-ending red cards that we'll never forget.

The next World Cup is coming up and will surely feature its own array of shocks, scandals and surprising sendings off. So, as we build up to the big event, let's take a look back in time to some of the craziest reds in World Cup history.

10. José Batista (1986)

It was the 1986 World Cup and Uruguay’s defender, José Batista, had helped his country qualify for the tournament with a vital goal, but he was about to go from hero to zero with one of the most memorable and shocking challenges in World Cup history.

The incident occurred in a group stage match between Uruguay and Scotland. It was the final group game, with Uruguay requiring a draw or win to safely secure their passage to the next round, but their chances of success took a huge blow when Batista flew feet-first into the back of Scottish midfielder Gordon Strachan in the opening minute.

To be precise, only 56 seconds of the game had been played when Batista lunged, studs-up, into Strachan’s calves, sending the Scot tumbling to the ground. The ref had no choice but to send Batista off, and his record for the fastest World Cup sending off still stands to this day. The game went on to end 0-0 but was plagued by nasty challenges and unsportsmanlike time-wasting on the part of the Uruguayans.


Mike Pedley hasn't written a bio just yet, but if they had... it would appear here.