During a recent Football Faithful staff night out, a clip of Divock Origi’s dramatic winner in last seasons Merseyside Derby appeared on the TV of one of the watering holes we were frequenting.
This video of Jordan Pickford’s epic brain fart sparked a lively debate amongst our team and now we’ve all finally sobered up, we thought it would be the perfect time to list out our picks of the five weirdest goals in Premier League history.
Dion Dublin – Coventry v Newcastle
Let’s start with a goal that was the catalyst for modern goalkeepers to always check behind them as they roll the ball along the ground before launching it up the pitch.
Up until 1992 when a new rule outlawing goalkeepers from picking up direct back passes came into existence, the vast majority of ‘keepers still kicked the ball out of their hands, unlike in the modern game where most choose to roll it along the deck before playing it out.
Therefore, we can maybe forgive a young Shay Given a little for not checking his wing mirrors when keeping goal for Newcastle against Coventry back in 1997. After claiming a cross Given quickly rolled the ball out looking to play up the pitch, but wily old striker Dion Dublin was still behind him after contesting the ball into the box and duly snuck around the side of the ‘keeper and before the Irish man knew what was going on the Coventry frontman had hit home into the empty net.
Stan Collymore – Blackburn v Liverpool
This one is the type of goal you’d expect to see on a torn up Sunday League pitch, but even during the late nineties, many Premier League surfaces were more like something you’d see in your local park that the pristine grounds we see today.
Liverpool striker Stan Collymore picks the ball up just inside Blackburn half and drives towards goal, although he scuffs his shot from the best part of 30 yards and it seems like a routine save for England international ‘keeper Tim Flowers. However, the ball bounces off a divet just before it reaches Flower, flies over his shoulder and into the onion bag, much to the bemusement of everybody involved.
Michail Antonio – West Ham v Southampton
Good old Michail Antonio, he may not be the most technically gifted of players, but the West Ham man and his flailing arms and legs always offers something up in the way of entertainment.
Back in September of 2015, things weren’t going great for Antonio after his big move to the Premier League from Nottingham Forest. West Ham fans were starting to become frustrated as their summer signing ran around clumsily trying to get his first goal for the Hammers.
However, as so often has been the case for Antonio his sheer effort would eventually pay off. Against Southampton, the West Ham winger would cut inside from the left before stumbling and falling on his face, luckily though the Saints defender would blast the ball of Antonio’s head and it would deflect up and over the hapless goalkeeper.
Darren Bent – Sunderland v Liverpool
This where the strange becomes just plain bonkers. Sunderland striker Darren Bent’s shot from 14 yards out looked like easy pickings for Liverpool ‘keeper Pepe Reina only for the ball to deflect off a beach ball – yep a f*cking beachball – and fly past the Spaniard into the net.
As it turned out Liverpool didn’t really have much to complain about as the beachball had been thrown onto the pitch by their own fans, who had purchased the item from the Reds official club shop.
Divock Origi – Liverpool v Everton
Where else to finish but with the goal that inspired this very piece. It’s the 95th minute of a fiercely contested Merseyside Derby and an entertaining game seems destined to finish in a 0-0 draw – which means Liverpool will cede control at the top of the Premier League to Man City.
With what seems certain to be the last chance of the game Liverpool pump the ball long into the Everton box and as it breaks to Virgil Van Dijk the Dutch defender shanks a volley high into the evening sky and all seems lost for Jurgen Klopp’s side. However, as the ball begins its descent it seems destined to land just behind the crossbar, but afraid of his team having to face another corner Everton ‘keeper Jordan Pickford tries to catch the ball only to fumble it and allow forgotten striker Divock Origi to head home from barely a yard out.