WWE: 5 Best Matches Ever To Take Place On UK Soil

bret hart vs british bulldog During the late 1980s and early 1990s, with 'Hulkamania' still running wild, the World Wrestling Federation (now WWE) began a global expansion campaign. The United Kingdom became a major target market and, in 1989, the company signed a deal with Sky Television to broadcast their shows to a British audience. Since that time, the promotion have regularly crossed the Atlantic, putting on live arena tours, staging UK-only pay-per-view events, filming their flagship television shows on British soil and even basing Summerslam 1992, one of their largest ever events, in London's Wembley Stadium. As a result, WWE have put on hundreds of matches in front of audiences across the country. Here, we look at the 5 best WWE matches to take place on UK soil...

5. Chris Benoit vs. Kurt Angle - WWE Insurrextion 2001

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44wggLj8OSQ It is fitting that wrestling matches take place on canvas, because every time Chris Benoit and Kurt Angle locked horns, they produced art. The two men contested some of the greatest WWE matches of the early 21st century, including a legendary match at Royal Rumble 2003. However, almost two before that classic confrontation, the two wrestled a 2 out of 3 Falls match in front of almost 16,000 fans at Earls Court in London. In the build up to this match, Chris Benoit stole Kurt Angle's Olympic gold medal, angering the 1996 heavyweight freestyle wrestling champion. While this match falls short of their greatest ever encounters, the two produced a very good, intense match, which incorporated mat wrestling, suplexes, submissions and counters. At one point, years before they became a regular part of Eddie Guerrero's routine, Benoit delivered three consecutive vertical suplexes to Angle - The Three Amigos. It is also notable for being a rare example of a 2 out of 3 Falls match which did not go to a third and deciding fall. Chris Benoit took the first fall after a diving headbutt. Then, after a sequence of Crippler Crossface and Ankle Lock counters, Benoit surprised Angle with a roll up to win two straight falls.

Jason Mitchell is a freelance writer and the author of the book 'A Culture of Silence: The Story of Football's Battle With Homophobia'.