WITH the 2014 World Cup almost upon us, here are seven reasons why we love the greatest football show on earth.

1. Upsets

Algeria 2 West Germany 1, 1982

West Germany were 3-1 to win the 1982 World Cup while Algeria were 1000-1 shots. No African side had ever beaten a European side in the World Cup until this game.

Italy 0 North Korea 1, 1966

Italy were humiliated by the little-fancied North Korea in 1966. Playing all their group games at Ayresome Park in Middlesbrough, locals adopted the players from the hermit kingdom who went on to the quarter-finals.

2. Drama

German keeper Harald Schumacher takes out Patrick Battiston

In the 1982 semi-final between West Germany and France, keeper Harald Schumacher clattered Patrick Battiston to the ground, knocking him out, breaking his jaw, damaging his vertebrae and knocking the Frenchman's two front teeth out. Feeling no pulse, teammate Michel Platini thought Battiston was dead. The referee gave no foul, let alone a red card.

3. Controversy

Geoff Hurst's goal for England in the 1966 remains contentious to this day. Did it cross the line or not? You decide!

What about this one?

4. Comedy

During the 1974 World Cup, Zaire's Mwepu Ilunga ran from the defensive wall and hoofed the ball away before Brazil could take their free-kick.  He later denied it was because he didn't understand the rules and said it was part of a protest over unpaid wages.

5. For the sublime (goals)

Denis Bergkamp for the Netherlands against Argentina, 1998

Maxi Rodriguez for Argentina against Mexico, 2006

6. And the ridiculous

In the 1962 quarter-final against Brazil, it fell to England legend Jimmy Greaves to catch a stray dog which ran onto the pitch. No other player could stop the wily hound until Greavsie got down on all fours and grabbed it. The dog thanked him by urinating all over his shirt.

7. Brazil. Just Brazil.

For goals like this from Carlos Alberto in the 1970 World Cup Final and many, many more...