Most Famous ‘Snow Games’

While sport is usually resilient to the elements, snow is often the one factor that can cancel or postpone events.

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Those unique flakes can play havoc with the calendar, rendering outdoor arenas unplayable, while even indoor fixtures can be hampered due to the treacherous travel conditions.

However, while winter sports are designed for the snowy weather, other categories aren’t and that has often contributed to some classic fixtures.

The Ice Bowl – 1967

The 1967 NFL Championship Game earned its nickname after the Packers outlasted the Cowboys 21-17 in snowy conditions at Lambeau Field in Wisconsin.

Ranked third in the NFL’s 100 Greatest Games list, the fixture featured two future Hall of Famers as Vince Lombardi guided the Packers to the win over Tom Landry’s Cowboys.

Both had previously worked together at the Giants but it was Lombardi who had the edge heading into the game, with his Green Bay side the two-time reigning champions having beaten their opponents 12 months earlier.

In an epic and icy showdown held on New Year’s Eve, home QB Bart Starr collected two touchdowns, his latter in the fourth quarter widely regarded as one of the finest individual plays in NFL history.

SnowClasico – 2013

Any game that garners the nickname SnowClasico has to be worth some attention and the March 2013 clash between the USA and Costa Rica rightly earns its place on our list.

Clint Dempsey scored the only goal after 16 minutes at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, in what was actually a somewhat drab affair from a footballing point of view.

However, the conditions made the spectacle, as both the American and Costa Rican sides battled the blizzard, with some of the players even seeing their hair turn white as the snow accumulated atop their heads!

The Coldest Game in MLS History – 2019

Colorado makes its second appearance on our list and again it was March at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park as the Rapids hosted the Portland Timbers.

With the temperature dropping to 18 below at kick-off, a cold one was always expected but snow soon started to fall and unlike in the USA v Costa Rica, the goals flowed.

Kei Kamara opened the scoring for Colorado after 16 minutes before Axel Sjoberg’s red card opened things up. Portland took advantage through Diego Valeri and Sebastian Blanco before Benny Feilhaber equalised soon after the break.

A Declan Wynne own goal looked set to give the visitors to win, only for Andre Shinyashiki’s 94th equaliser to seal what was a deserved, yet perhaps bizarre, point for both sides.

The Tuck Rule Game – 2001

One of the most controversial games in NFL history, New England Patriots were 16-13 winners over the Oakland Raiders in the 2001 AFC Divisional Playoff game.

The mercury had fallen well below zero in Foxborough but there was red hot action on the field and the pair could not be separated.

Overtime was required but only after a controversial call from the officials, with the Patriots eventually coming out on top thanks to a pair of Adam Vinatieri field goals.

The result sparked the Pats’ run of Championships and largely thanks to a decision that Tom Brady had attempted to tuck the ball when being tackled by Charles Woodson.

If it had been called a fumble, the Raiders would have been in pole position to progress but the hosts kept the ball due to it being adjudged an incomplete pass.

Vinatieri then kicked a 45-yard field goal to send the pair into overtime, before repeating the feat in OT.

Cold in Cologne – 2017

The only selection not to have come from the United States, a Bundesliga relegation bout between Cologne and Freiburg.

This game was delayed by 30 minutes due to the snowfall and looked like it could be a damp squib when Cologne raced into a 3-0 lead to seemingly end the game as a contest after 29 minutes.

However, Nils Petersen and Janik Haberer made it 3-2 by the break before late drama as Petersen netted a brace of penalties in stoppage time, but only after the referee had rediscovered where the penalty spot was!

That 4-3 win gave Freiburg a 12-point lead over bottom club Cologne and was perhaps the vital victory as the Breisgau-Brasilianer went on to avoid the drop.

The first choice in any quiz team, Jack is your man for stats, facts and information across a wide range of different sports. As well as a vast knowledge of football, he specialises in cycling, rugby and tennis amongst a number of other sports.
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