1- Australia 31-0 American Samoa
The standard-bearer of international football, Australia’s landslide win over American Samoa in 2001 is the highest scoring victory any national side has ever registered. Records tumbled as Archie Thompson scored the highest ever number of goals in an international match (13) and David Zdrilic became the second highest scorer since World War I with eight.
Not only did American Samoa fail to hit back once, but they went on to concede another 26 goals during their World Cup Qualifying campaign. Yes, this was not a friendly, but a competitive match – well, at least in name.
2- Brazil 14-0 Nicaragua
Next in our list is Brazil’s attempt to physically predict the future. Indeed, in October 1975, it was as though the Selecao knew Brazil ’14 would be the year and location of the 2014 World Cup. Just look at their sensational attempt at foreshadowing – the only thing missing is the apostrophe. That day, Luis Alberto scored four and his team-mates scored even more. Poor Tahiti? Poor Nicaragua…
3- San Marino 0-13 Germany
To Europe, where one of the biggest international wins of the 21st century saw ‘ze Germans’ bag an unbelievable 13 goals against lowly San Marino. Lukas Podolski scored four that day and Germany were 6-0 up by half-time alone. The margin is a record for a European Championship qualifying match but not even Germany’s best – over a century ago they beat Russia 16-0.
4- New Zealand 10-0 Tahiti
Newsflash: Tahiti have lost 10-0 on more than one occasion. And this particular encounter means they have done so twice in nine years. Yes, it may have been sweltering with Mauri heat in June 2004 but there was no warmth shown by a New Zealand side who proceeded to dismantle the French Polynesians by a ten-goal margin. Ryan Nelsen scored twice but Vaughan Coveny and Brent Fisher went one better with hat-tricks. Ah, those unfortunate Tahitians.
5- Spain 10-0 Tahiti
They say lightning doesn’t strike twice, but in 2013 Tahiti were once again on the receiving end of a 10-0 thrashing. This time at the hands of Spain. The reality is that it could have been more.
6- Spain 9-0 Austria
Poor Tahiti may have suffered the full extent of Spanish wrath on Thursday night but they are far from the only side to have been swept aside by La Roja. While Fernando Torres netted four against Tahiti this week, it was Raul who did the same amount of damage in a European qualifier against Austria in 1999. So much for the promise of a new millennium, the Austrians have probably been struggling to recover from this game ever since.
7- Australia 0-8 South Africa
From heroes to zeroes, Australia got as close as they could to being on the receiving end of a similar scoreline 47 years earlier. They conceded just under four times fewer – but it no doubt still hurt them. At the Kensington Oval, Adelaide in 1955, Malcolm Rufus, Harold Paton and Peter Hughes all scored twice, while Cliff Jacques and Ian Palmer opened and closed the hammering respectively.
8- Germany 8-0 Saudi Arabia
Clearly, the Germans are never in the mood to mess about. They brought us another unforgettable clash when they handed Saudi Arabia an 8-0 caning in 2002 – their best ever result in a World Cup match. Prompting world-wide headlines about the Saudis inability to get anywhere ‘Klose’ to victory, Miroslav Klose notched a hat-trick, while five other scorers piled on the misery for the Middle Eastern side.
9- San Marino 0-8 England
It may surprise many but England have managed to add themselves to our list, courtesy of their 8-0 win in San Marino this March. A brace from Jermain Defoe and single contributions from the likes of Daniel Sturridge, Wayne Rooney, Frank Lampard, Ashley Young and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain gave England their biggest win since 1987. Yes, it appears the Three Lions are actually capable of scoring the odd goal.
10- Yugoslavia 7-0 Faroe Islands
In May 1991, Davor Suker’s 85thminute goal capped off a comprehensive 7-0 win for Yugoslavia against the Faroe Islands. But, amazingly, the Yugoslavians were only 2-0 up at half-time, with five of their seven goals being scored after the break. This was not the former state’s biggest ever win, however, as they had previously beaten Venezuela 10-0 in 1972.
Technically the following match should be top, but we felt it just wouldn’t be fair include it.
In 2002, Madagascan champions AS Adema won a league match 149-0 (yes, one hundred and forty-nine).
Unbelievably, however, Adema did not touch the ball even once between the first and 149th. No, the goals were all scored by losing side Stade Olympique L’Emyrne, who sent the ball hurtling towards their own net time and again in protest at an earlier refereeing decision.