If we’re talking about goals of the season then it would be an injustice not to mention the one that finished the domestic season off. As we know from Latics’ own experiences this year, there’s nothing sweeter than a last minute goal, and when it’s as special as the one Gerrard scored you can understand why the BBC extended their vote to include it. We’ve seen quite a few decent goals from the opposition as well this season. Henry’s free kick Rooney’s Old Trafford opener and Barton’s panic inducer deserve mentions, but for me the Stephen Reid pile driver beats the lot.
Enough about other teams though. We’re here to talk about what the lads in blue and white have managed this year, so let’s get on with it. There have undoubtedly been some special moments this season and at the same time we’ve shown no little quality in front of goal. The three goals that I’ve selected reflect both the sublime goals and those that may have been a little more run of the mill, but meant something. So, in reverse order, I give you –
Damien Francis – Everton away
A fairly simple goal perhaps, but one that really announced Latics on the major stage. Francis’s close range finish to follow up Camara’s shot enabled a smash and grab raid on a ‘name’ team that proved that we weren’t mugs and suggested that we might actually be able to achieve something at this level,
Henri Camara – Sunderland away
Question! If a player can score goals like this one, them why doesn’t he take more of his, much simpler, one on one chances. A real piece of skill from the Senegalese star, his first time over the shoulder effort giving the keeper absolutely bugger all chance.
Jason Roberts – Arsenal Away (CocaCola Cup)
Now we’re back where we started with a last minute goal in a cup tie. Gerrard’s 30 yard pot shot may have looked better than this route one move, but there’s a real comparison in terms of romance. We’d done enough at that stage to still be in the tie but looked dead on our feet. Pollitt’s punt was obviously more in hope than anything. Scharner’s flick on changed that, and Roberts, wearing the captain’s arm band was there to slot home, the rest, 4-0 drubbing included, is history and I don’t need to tell you what it meant for the club.
These choices aren’t going to meet with universal approval, and Alan Mahon and Jimmy Bullard, for their goals against Villa may well be the loudest complainants, Roberts’ penalty against Sunderland was also in with a shout. The fact is that every goal this season has been special or important in different ways to different people, I set myself the task of picking three of them and there they are.
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