Mario Balotelli, Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann: Soccer's 9 coolest celebrations ever

The art of celebrating a goal has evolved dramatically over the years; from a simple handshake in days of old to the highly choreographed routines of today which take as long to master as the perfect set-piece.

On Sunday, Olympique de Marseille forward Mario Balotelli took things up a notch. After scoring in his side's 2-0 Ligue 1 victory over St-Étienne, the Italian ran behind the goal to collect his phone from the club's photographer before starting an Instagram Live video with his team-mates (below).

The former Manchester City, Liverpool and AC Milan forward has always been his own man – remember that hat, setting fireworks off in his bathroom or the immortal 'Why Always Me?' t-shirt – but his inventive celebration has opened up a world of possibilities.

But he is far from the only pioneer – 

Francesco Totti

The AS Roma legend achieved many great things during a 28-year career with his boyhood club. But he's perhaps best remembered for his iconic selfie celebration after scoring against fierce rivals Lazio in his 40th Derby della Capitale appearance in January 2015. 

Lionel Messi

The FC Barcelona genius has a huge back catalogue of magic moments for the Blaugrana. But few compare to his 500th strike for the Catalan club in April 2017. It was the last kick of a pulsating 3-2 win for Barça which saw them leapfrog rivals Real Madrid into first place. Messi cemented the moment with an iconic celebration...

Antoine Griezmann 

The French World Cup winner is known for his celebrations. There was his nod to Drake's 'Hotline Bling' before he switched to a dance from the popular videogame Fortnite. Before all that he hopped in a handily placed car and pretended to drive his Real Sociedad team-mates off into the distance.

Paul Pogba

What goes on in that French dressing room exactly? It's not only Griezmann who's a fan of a dance routine but fellow World Cup winner and Manchester United driving force Paul Pogba. At Juventus he made dabbing his thing and since returning to Old Trafford he's brought out a spate of elaborate dance and handshake routines which often feature Jesse Lingard.

Jesse Lingard

Not content with the role of a backing dancer for United team-mate Pogba, Lingard has his own signature celebration, the Milly Rock, which originates from a tracky by rapper 2 Milly, named Milly Rock. He's also brought out a pied piper dance and a teapot. Don't ask! 

Miguel Almirón and Josef Martínez

The 2019 Major League Soccer season began at the weekend and after Miguel Almirón's move to Premier League side Newcastle United one thing we won't be seeing is his heart hands celebration with team-mate Josef Martínez.


Dele Alli

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The Tottenham Hotspur and England midfielder is another who loves a handshake and, as well as collaborating with his Spurs team-mates, Dele has been known to partake in solo celebrations. The most notable gave way to the 'Dele Challenge' which involved creating a circle with forefinger and thumb, flipping in 180 degrees and placing it over your eye.

Nope, we never mastered it. 

Marco Reus and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Are there many better combinations than Reus and Aubameyang? Perhaps only Batman and Robin. So the former Borussia Dortmund duo paid tribute to the cartoon crime fighters while playing together in the Bundesliga. Since Aubameyang left for Arsenal in January 2018, Reus has been left without his right-hand man...

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