Iceland Soccer

Iceland's upset victory over England in a round-of-16 game set the so-far ho-hum Euro 2016 ablaze. The tiny island nation with a population of barely 300,000, playing in its first major international tournament, was able to thwart a Three Lions side filled with top players from the English Premier League and other elite European leagues.

But just how impressive was this Iceland victory in the annals of international soccer? It's among one of the great upsets, but truthfully not quite at the top. Here's our look at the 10 most shocking results in the history of major international tournaments:

10. Iceland 2, England 1 (2016 European Championship)

Iceland Beats England

After losing a playoff to just miss qualifying for the 2014 World Cup, Iceland made its first major international tournament by beating the Netherlands twice during qualifying. But the small island nation in the North Atlantic wasn't just happy to be there in France and went on to shock England in the round of 16. Granted, aside from a lone 1966 World Cup title won on home soil, England's major tournament history is littered with stunning and ignoble defeats, this loss to an upstart minnow rankled Three Lions fans to the core.

9. Senegal 1, France 0 (2002 World Cup)

France Senegal 2002 World Cup

A World Cup renowned for upsets started with a bang in the tournament opener in Seoul, South Korea. Defending World Cup and European champion France should've had no trouble with Senegal, a team making its World Cup debut. Yet a Papa Bouba Diop goal in the 30th minute would account for all the scoring in a 1-0 shocker. France would crash out of the tournament by finishing last in its group while Senegal advanced to the quarterfinals before losing to another upstart Turkey in overtime.

8. Honduras 2, Brazil 0 (2001 Copa America)

Honduras Brazil 2001 Copa America

Honduras was a last-minute replacement after Argentina and Canada pulled out of the Copa America in Colombia, citing security concerns. Brazil was without some of its stars but still brought a formidable team that would win the World Cup a year later. Honduras was not at full strength, either, as it was missing top players still involved in domestic league play. Brazil could not break through against Honduras' makeshift lineup and fell behind on an own goal in the 57th minute. Saul Martinez then clinched the biggest upset in Copa history with an injury-time goal.

7. Denmark 2, Germany 0 (1992 European Championship)

Denmark Germany 1992 Euro

Most Danish players didn't even know they'd be playing in Euro 1992 in Sweden. Denmark didn't qualify for the tournament and was only granted a last-minute reprieve when Yugoslavia was expelled because of the ongoing war that broke the country apart. After shocking the defending European champion Netherlands on penalties in the semis, the Danes were given little chance against the defending World Cup champion Germany -- competing as a unified nation for the first time since World War II. Yet Denmark held on for a 2-0 win for its only major international title.

6. Greece 1, France 0 (2004 European Championship)

Greece France 2004 Euro

Defending European champion France, captained by Zinedine Zidane, appeared to have an open path to the final after easily winning its group. But determined defending by a Greece team making just its second Euro appearance frustrated les Bleus for the entire game. Angelos Charisteas then scored the quarterfinal game's lone goal in the 64th minute as Greece held on for the stunning upset. The Greeks would go on to win two more 1-0 games, including a victory over host Portugal in the final, to unthinkably claim their European title.

5. West Germany 3, Hungary 2 (1954 World Cup)

West Germany Hungary 1954 World Cup

Hungary arrived at the 1954 World Cup in Switzerland as the prohibitive favorite. The Mighty Magyars were on a 31-match unbeaten streak coming into the tournament and reached the final by outscoring their opponents 25-7 in four games, including an 8-3 thrashing of West Germany in group play. The Germans were still picking up the pieces from the Second World War and had been banned from the 1950 World Cup. But in the final, after Hungary took a 2-0 lead in just eight minutes, West Germany rallied to tie before Helmut Rahn scored his second goal in the 84th minute to complete the improbable 3-2 victory known as the "Miracle of Bern."

4. Cameroon 1, Argentina 0 (1990 World Cup)

Cameroon Argentina 1990 World Cup

Led by Diego Maradona, Argentina came to Italia '90 poised to defend its World Cup title, yet in the tournament opener it could not solve Cameroon, making just its second World Cup appearance. Despite playing with 10 men in the game's final 30 minutes, the Indomitable Lions went ahead on Francois Omam-Biyik's 67th minute header and held on even after earning another red card in the game's final minutes. Cameroon would make a memorable run to the quarterfinals where it lost to England in overtime.

3. Algeria 2, West Germany 1 (1982 World Cup)


Algeria, making its World Cup debut in Spain, was not supposed to trouble reigning European champion West Germany in the tournament opener. But Lakhdar Belloumi's stunning goal a minute after die Mannschaft equalized in the second half held up as the game winner. The fallout from the 2-1 German defeat was a controversial match between West Germany and Austria in the final group game as both teams colluded to ensure that they both advanced after a 1-0 West Germany victory. The "Disgrace of Gijon" led to simultaneous final group matches in major tournaments to ensure fair play.

2. North Korea 1, Italy 0 (1966 World Cup)

Italy North Korea 1966 World Cup

The Italians, who would go on to win the European championship two years later, were among the favorites to land the Jules Rimet trophy in England. Smarting from a 1-0 loss to the Soviet Union, Italy still needed just a draw against lowly North Korea -- making its World Cup debut -- to advance to the quarterfinals. But Pak Doo-ik's 42nd minute goal held as the game winner and the Azzurri had a humiliating 1-0 defeat and elimination from the tournament. Italy would have trouble with another Korean team some years later, losing to host South Korea, 2-1, in a World Cup round-of-16 game in 2002.

1. USA 1, England 0 (1950 World Cup)

USA England 1950 World Cup

The 2-1 loss to Iceland in Nice on Monday was humiliating, but in England's glorious history of terrible defeats, nothing tops this at the 1950 World Cup in Brazil, where the heavily favored English were beaten by a rag-tag American team that was assembled from a bunch of part-time playing amateurs. Many people reading the papers thought the 1-0 score was a typo (a 10-1 England victory was presumed), but Joe Gaetjens' 38th-minute header for the U.S. stood up as the group-play game's lone goal.

Honorable mention: Czechoslovakia 2-2 (5-3 PK) West Germany (Euro 1976 final); Northern Ireland 1-0 Spain (1982 World Cup group stage); France 3-0 Brazil (1998 World Cup final); South Korea 2-1 Italy (2002 World Cup round of 16); South Africa 2-1 France (2010 World Cup group stage).

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Samuel Chi is the managing editor of and proprietor of College Football Exchange. Follow him on Twitter at @ThePlayoffGuru.