There’s consolation goals and then there’s ‘scant’ consolation goals like the one Klass Jan Huntelaar scored against Real Madrid. In any other circumstance, the Dutchman’s volley was worthy of winning any game if it wasn’t for the Benzema, Bale and Ronaldo blitz in the previous 89 minutes.
Thinking much closer to home of the memorable strikes scored in vain or when the opposition can afford to take their foot off the gas, here’s six spectacular consolation goals scored in Premier League history.
Benito Carbone vs Blackburn Rovers 1997 (Blackburn Rovers 7-2 Sheffield Wednesday)
If ever there was a game that summed up the Italian’s time in England it was this one. Roy Hodgson’s side raced into a 4-0 lead by half time thanks to a brace from Kevin Gallacher and strikes from Chris Sutton and Jason Wilcox. The £3 million signing from Inter Milan scored his second goal of the game just after the break with a drilled long range shot past Tim Flowers. Carbone though wasn’t done leaving his mark on the game or Kevin Gallacher and was given his marching orders just ten minutes later for a nasty challenge on the Scot.
Robin Van Persie vs Manchester United 2011 (Manchester United 8-2 Arsenal)
After Manchester City put five past Spurs earlier in the day, Ferguson’s men brutally dismantled a depleted Arsenal side. Against his present employers, Van Persie did finally manage to get on the score sheet after fluffing his lines from the penalty spot in the first half. Just minutes after Park Ji Sung scored United’s sixth goal of the game, the Dutchman finally beat Spaniard De Gea in the United goal after Phil Jones’s headed clearance was helped back into the box by Carl Jenkinson leaving the Arsenal striker to leather the ball into the roof of the net with that trusty left boot.
(Roll to 7 minutes 30 seconds for Van Persie’s goal)
Elano vs Middlesbrough 2008 (Middlesbrough 8-1 Manchester City)
Signalling the end of Sven Goran Eriksson’s troublesome tenure at the Manchester club, Gareth Southgate’s side took full advantage of the extra man after Richard Dunne’s sending off. Alfonso Alves bagged a hat-trick and even Stuart Downing and Adam Johnson manaaged to get on the score sheet. Brazilian Elano was a player that epitomised Sven’s reign struggling to recreate the form he showed in front of his own fans when on the road. His mazy run and rasping left foot strike gave something for the City fans to cheer only until Alves put away Boro’s eighth and final goal of the game.
Darren Fletcher vs Manchester City 2011 (Manchester United 1-6 Manchester City)
United’s heaviest defeat at home against its noisy neighbours since 1955, this is a Manchester derby that will forever be remembered for Balotelli’s ‘Why Always Me?’ goal celebration and Roberto Mancini’s men simply running riot at Old Trafford. Fletcher’s stunning strike after a one-two with Javier Hernandez reduced the deficit to two goals but it didn’t stop the inevitable with City adding three more goals in ten minutes to mark what Ferguson referred to as his worst ever day in management.
Fabrizio Ravanelli vs Derby County 2001 (Middlesbrough 5-1 Derby County)
Four months into the 2001-02 Premier League season Derby had only one won game on the opening day. They did at least have a 36-year old Fabrizio Ravanelli with seven goals to his name up against the club that first brought him to England. There was no love at the Riverside from Steve McClaren and young Argentine Carlos Marinelli who blitzed Colin Todd’s side. The Silver Fox did manage to find enough time to vent his frustration driving an excellent free-kick past Boro keeper Mark Schwarzer in the 89th minute.
Steven Sidwell vs Liverpool 2011 (Fulham 2-5 Liverpool)
Steven Sidwell’s face after chesting the ball down and lashing it on the half-volley past Pepe Reina tells you all you need to know about the significance of his finely taken goal. 3-0 down at half-time which turned to 5-1 after Luis Suarez got his solitary goal of the game in the 75th minute, Fulham were seemingly content sitting tenth in the table while Liverpool were fighting for a place in Europe. The former Reading man had the last say in the 86th minute capitalizing on Skrtel’s headed clearance and producing the kind of finish his manager Mark Hughes would have been proud of had his side not been well and truly hammered.