As much as football is taken seriously sometimes it can provide a comedy factor, especially with players scoring at the wrong end of the pitch (as long as it isn’t your team’s player) then you can see the funny side. Some own goals can be unfortunate, taking a wicked deflection that a player can’t do anything about is forgivable, but there are a number of own goals that have been scored which leave fans scratching their heads in bemusement or laughing out loud. I’ve lost count of how many Football DVDs I’ve owned or seen displaying own goals and other types of bizarre incidents in the game.
The following list of top ten own goals is for your amusement with most coming from a moment of madness by the player in question or another team mate letting him down with a simple back pass (Paul Robinson/Gary Neville) and (Peter Enckleman/Olof Mellberg) come to mind. Sunderland are guilty of losing a Premier League game 3-1 against Charlton back in 2003, with all their players scoring a goal. Michael Proctor scored two own goals in this game, whereas Mark Fish was credited with Charlton’s first, it did take a final touch off Sunderland’s Stephen Wright.
On Tuesday night, Oxford United scored two own goals away at Lincoln City in the space of 5 minutes, they lost the game 3-1. However unfortunate an own goal may be, the guilty players have to question their concentration and composure which is surely lacking in such incidents, especially in the following top 10 list of Own Goals…..
10: Iain Dowie – Unfortunately Iain Dowie is remembered for three things, his beautiful good looks, creating a new word in the English language (Bouncebackability) and scoring an own goal playing for West Ham against Stockport County. Despite defending a corner in his own box, Dowie places a header in the corner of the net like any decent striker would but at the other end.
9: Lee Dixon – The former Arsenal full back was part of the famous back 5 of the 1990s that kept a tight defence, but Dixon can’t be forgiven for this own goal with his looping header into the far post being even more impressive than Iain Dowie’s.
8: Frank Sinclair – The accompanying video is more of a compilation of Sinclair’s own goals rather than any in particular. For any player to have a compilation of own goals made about them is surely worthy to enter a top 10 list. The first few headers were a bit unlucky, but his hefty pass back to Ian Walker must’ve left his team mates shaking their heads.
7:Djimi Traore – The former Liverpool left back has a Champions League winning medal but he was also responsible of scoring a back heel into his own net. This goal saw lower league Burnley knock Liverpool out of the Cup and his reputation on Merseyside wasn’t the same again, what was he thinking?
6: John Arne Riise – Heading in a cross in a crucial game against Chelsea, Riise was more famous for his long range, bullet shots and in this instance, I bet the Liverpool fans wished he’d booted it in row Z rather than use his head.
5: Robert Green – It might be bearable to watch again for us England supporters but Robert Green’s howler in the World Cup last summer led to all sorts of problems during the tournament. He didn’t even have the excuse of it ‘bobbling’ on the ground like it did for Robinson versus Croatia. A low Dempsey shot appeared to be collected by Green only for the ball to hit him on the arm and crawl in.
4: Andres Escobar – Not all own goals are funny. Andres Escobar’s own goal at the World Cup 1994 saw his national side, Colombia knocked out of the tournament and tragically the player was shot dead back in his own country because of it.
3: Lee Dixon – Making a 2nd appearance in the Top Ten, whilst his header provided a shake of the head this clip of him lobbing his own keeper from about 30 yards out never fails to make me chuckle. I don’t know what Dixon was thinking at the time, but back then David Seaman hadn’t been found out about his jumping ability. Maybe the likes of Nayim and Ronaldinho saw this clip?
2: Chris Brass – If you’re going to score an own goal then do it in total calamity style. Whilst playing for York City at Darlington, Brass tries to clear and ball into the box only to smack himself in the face leaving the ball rolling past his own ‘keeper into the goal. Taxi for Brass indeed.
1: Jamie Pollock – This has always been my favourite own goal of all time, not because it was scored for my club (ok maybe a little) but it’s just the style of the own goal is something I have never seen before. It was almost as good as Gazza’s goal at Euro ’96 except Pollock was facing his own goal and it’s hard to determine what he was trying to do. I’d love to know what Manchester City fans thought at the time.