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Brutally Ranking Every ‘Goal!’ Movie

The “Goal!” movie trilogy holds a special place in the hearts of football fans, blending the drama of the game with compelling storylines of triumph, adversity, and redemption. Plus a dash of FM scouting.

Is ‘Goal!’ a Good Movie?

I would say that it’s a very good football movie.

But I don’t have the authority to adjudicate on its status as a general film.

That being said, I think it captures a pretty cute storyline that we do get to see working in practise in the ‘real’ of football. Particularly when it comes to procuring and developing unsung talents.

From Santiago Muñez’s journey from a humble upbringing to football stardom, to his quest for glory on the world stage, the trilogy has captured the imagination of audiences worldwide.

In this article, we’ll embark on a fun and honest ranking of every “Goal!” movie, from worst to best, celebrating the highs and lows of Santiago’s unforgettable journey.

Let’s get the first one out the way, shall we?

“Goal! III: Taking on the World” (2009)

Let’s be honest, “Goal! III: Taking on the World” falls short of its predecessors in many aspects.

With a convoluted plot, lackluster performances, and a departure from the realism and authenticity that defined the first two films, “Goal! III” fails to capture the magic of the first two.

While it offers some thrilling football action and cameo appearances from real-life football stars, the film ultimately feels like a missed opportunity to conclude Santiago’s story with the same heart and emotion that made the first two films so beloved.

And don’t even get me started on the ‘special effects’.

My use of quotation marks isn’t a typo by the way, because I don’t know who they were fooling. Because even a relative philistine like myself will know that green screens are used to mimic a player’s appearance in a real stadium, but you don’t have to make it that obvious, do you?

In my honest opinion, if you’ve watched the first two and think ‘should I watch the last one’, don’t even bother. It offers nothing to the plot and will be a couple of hours you can’t take back.

“Goal! II: Living the Dream” (2007)

It’s a bit cheeky to use David Beckham in the promo poster, isn’t it?

He was only in the film for about three cameos! But it’s Becks, so we’ll let that one slide.

“Goal! II: Living the Dream” earns the runner-up spot in our ranking, offering an entertaining continuation of Santiago’s journey as he navigates the highs and lows of life as a professional.

While the film may lack the raw authenticity of the original, it compensates with thrilling football action, dramatic plot twists, and a charismatic performance from co-lead actor ‘Gavin Harris‘.

With appearances from real-life football stars and breathtaking cinematography capturing the excitement of the game, “Goal! II” delivers an entertaining ride for football fans. They did use a few of the scenes more than once, but it’s a tiny detail I’m happy to overlook.

Mainly because there was some real thought behind the storyline, including the sub-plot of Santi’s much-ignored background and family. It’s a movie that I’d happily put on whenever I can, and I certainly wouldn’t feel short-changed with my time or money if it came back to the big screen.

“Goal!” (2005)

Taking the top spot in our ranking is the film that started it all: “Goal!”

Directed by Danny Cannon, the original “Goal!” movie captivated audiences with its inspiring story of Santiago Muñez’s rise from a small-town dreamer to a footballing sensation.

With a heartfelt performance from the entire cast – from the scout who found him and the lady he falls for – it brings a genuine feeling of jeopardy and hope for ‘Santi’ as the main protagonist.

From his humble beginnings in Los Angeles to his triumph on the hallowed grounds of St James’ Park, “Goal!” captures the essence and power of chasing your dreams against all odds.

Seeing Alan Shearer’s best dramatic rendition of ‘are you finished with that, son’ in the Newcastle gym was also a joy to behold. As was that final goal at the end to cement his reputation as a future Premier League hero… and eventual Real Madrid wannabe ‘galactico‘.


While the “Goal!” trilogy may have its highs and lows, there’s no denying the impact it has had on football fans around the world.

Literally every football fan I know has seen at least two of the movies on this list.

Whether you prefer the raw authenticity of the original film or the thrilling football action of its sequels, one thing is clear: Santiago Muñez’s journey from obscurity to superstardom will continue to inspire generations of supporters for years to come.

But I can’t stress this enough… do not bother with the final film!

Which was your favourite film from the Goal! movie trilogy?