Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Goal Celebration Hell

Peter Crouch added a new and grim chapter to the annals of terrible goal celebrations last night. The “robot dance” which was unveiled after the Liverpool striker scored England’s third goal in the friendly against Hungary was supposedly a reprise of Crouch’s ‘performance’ on the dancefloor at the Beckhams' gala party last weekend. The call from Celebrity X-Factor’s producers was, one presumes, unforthcoming.

Here are some other culprits from When Footballers Celebrate…

ROBBIE KEANE: The Crap Tumble-Six Gun Shooter

This effort is especially loathsome given how the Spurs and Ireland striker has stuck with it over the years. Wolves, Coventry, Inter Milan, Leeds, Premiership games for Spurs, even World Cup finals matches with Ireland, Keane has resolutely persisted with the sort of celebration which many of us attempted having seen the great Mexican Hugo Sanchez somersault in our youth, but soon abandoned due to the sort of sack-of-potatoes gymnastics that Keane continues to demonstrate. The pistols at the end were presumably tacked on to redeem the messy lurch that had just preceded them. For God’s sake Robbie, you’re captain of Ireland now. Stop it!

TIM CAHILL: Rocky of the Corner Flag

Quite well executed and a well-conceived idea, using the pitchside paraphernalia as a prop, but Cahill’s snot-nosed brattishness sees him, rather than use this celebration as a self-deprecating fun gesture, believe that he actually is really tough, just like a boxer, right? Big Duncan should have clipped him around the ear quicksmart.

BEBETO: Rocking the Baby

Surely not! This is a classic celebration, a beautiful moment of tender paternal love in the midst of the maelstrom of a World Cup finals tie. Bebeto’s baby-rocking celebration of his goal against Holland in the 1994 World Cup finals is condemned not for itself, but for the license it gave every footballer who had managed to procreate to burden us with his unseemly familial joy. And as we all know, there is nothing worse than other people’s babies. The whole genre, however, was redeemed by Fred, Lyon’s Brazilian striker, who during this season’s Champions League at last gave it a different spin by concealing a pacifier (Soother? Dummy? Whatever) in his shorts, which he promptly stuck in his mouth upon scoring.

ALAN SHEARER: Flat Hand in the Air Accompanied By Smug Grin

Shearer famously celebrated winning the only major trophy of his career, Blackburn’s 1995 Premiership triumph, by creosoting his garden fence, so it is fitting that his goal celebrations are equally colourless. The other end of the spectrum altogether to the Lua-Lua somersault type of stuff, the fact of the Geordie fence-sitter’s prolific scoring record meant that we had to see this 1950s throwback celebration hundreds of times. Once again: ball hits net, Shearer runs away along the by-line, hand raised flat in the air, arm slightly forward (almost in the fascist style we might venture), and…..cue smug grin! Repeat ad infinitum….

THIERRY HENRY: Bust of a Roman Emperor

Henry is actually as careful and contrived a manipulator of his public image as the much-maligned David Beckham. The only difference is that Beckham hones his persona for the Heat-reading tabloid types, whereas Henry plays up to the broadsheet-perusing chattering classes, thereby avoiding the scorn Beckham attracts. He has developed the image of the philosopher-footballer, as patented by Eric Cantona, and with his Va-Va Voom adverts and his sleek Gallic cool, he seemingly achieves the impossible feat of being a bona-fide hip footballer. Thing is, as demonstrated by his occasional unsmiling, statuesque reaction to a goal, it's all a construct, and, as any teenager will tell you, there’s nothing less cool than someone trying to be cool.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about Robbie Fowler's famous "white line"?

12:23 p.m.  
Blogger AmitD said...

hehe funny stuff...

12:55 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what about the duffer's confused japanese bow?? Anyone running a book on the silliest celebration in the Germany World Cup? 25/1 on Ronaldo eating a big mac given from a spectator at the corner flag.

4:45 p.m.  
Blogger Tommy77 said...

Fowler's 'white line' celebration, while irresponsible for children watching blah blah, role model etc etc, was actually rather amusing I thought, the scally scamp.

12:13 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did you seriously suggest in here somewhere that Thierry Henry was not cool???

4:55 p.m.  

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