Iconic footballing moments of 2021

Mudeet Arora
Messi lifted his career's first international trophy in 2021
Messi lifted his career's first international trophy in 2021 / Alexandre Schneider/GettyImages

2021 was indeed an incredible year in football.

The beautiful game continued being the source of happiness to millions of fans around the world amid the ongoing pandemic.

The first half of the year saw empty stadiums for games but the second half saw fans watching from the grounds, in what looked like things getting back to normal. The current condition in the second half of the year is once again getting serious with COVID-19 cases with a halt to the Premier League especially being considered.

Here's a look at all the incredible footballing moments for us to cherish in 2021:

1. Simon Kjaer saving Christian Eriksen's life

Simon Kjaer, Christian Eriksen
Simon Kjaer saved his teammate Christian Eriksen's life in Euro 2020 / WOLFGANG RATTAY/GettyImages

Simon Kjaer was the hero of the Euro 2020 as he saved his teammate Christian Eriksen's life after the midfielder suffered a cardiac arrest on the pitch.

Eriksen collapsed on the field and Kjaer was the first to rush to him and give emergency treatment to him on the field before the medics arrived.

Eriksen remained unconscious for several minutes and was saved by a cardiac massage followed by an electric shock of a defibrallator after Kjaer took the initial action that players are trained for.

2. Argentina and Messi lifting the Copa America

Lionel Messi
Messi lifted the Copa America with Argentina / Alexandre Schneider/GettyImages

Argentina and Lionel Messi fans around the globe celebrated in incredible fashion after they won the Copa America this year after a gap of almost 30 years.

Messi led Argentina beat Brazil in their own backyard to claim the trophy. This win more or less settled the GOAT debate between Messi and Ronaldo.

3. Italy's Euro 2020 win

Roberto Mancini coach of Italy and the italian players...
Italy beat England in the final / Insidefoto/GettyImages

Italy came into a big tournament like Euro 2020 for the first time since 2012 after failing to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

The four-time World champions went all the way to the final of the Euros, beating England in their own backyard.

4. Chelsea's UEFA Champions League win

Chelsea win Champions League title
Chelsea with the Champions League title / Anadolu Agency/GettyImages

Chelsea claimed their second UEFA Champions League trophy after a change in management mid-season.

Lampard was sacked and Tuchel was brought in as Chelsea manager.

The Blues beat Manchester City 1-0 in the final to claim an incredible Champions League final win.

5. Lionel Messi's record seventh Ballon d'Or

Lionel Messi
Messi with his record seventh Ballon d'Or / Aurelien Meunier/GettyImages

After headlining Argentina's Copa America win, there was no doubt that Messi would win the Ballon d'Or.

That's exactly what happened as Messi beat Lewandowski and Jorginho to lift his seventh gong.

6. Cristiano Ronaldo's Manchester United homecoming

Cristiano Ronaldo
Ronaldo returned back to Manchester United this summer / Laurence Griffiths/GettyImages

The biggest transfer of the year without doubt was Cristiano Ronaldo's return back to Manchester United in the summer.

It surely eclipsed Messi's move to PSG.

Since his return, Ronaldo has been in exceptional goalscoring form.

7. Robert Lewandowski's European Golden Shoe

Bayern Munich legend Robert Lewandowski won the European Golden Shoe award in 2021 after scoring 41 goals in the 2020-21 season.

8. Cristiano Ronaldo reaching 800 career goals

Cristiano Ronaldo reached 800 career goals as Manchester United secured a 3-2 win over Arsenal in the Premier League in the beginning of December.

Ronaldo scored the winner and his 800th career goal for club and country, from a penalty.

He became the first player ever to reach this milestone.

9. Jorginho winning the UEFA Men's POTY

Jorginho was named UEFA Men's Player of the Year for his hand in Chelsea's UEFA Champions League win and Italy's UEFA Euro win.