By Richard Hunter
Everyone has a goal they remember forever, for good reasons or bad reasons, but few are shared by all. I doubt any of the other writers on here would match up with mine, unless you narrow down the fields e.g. favourite goal by a Scotsman in England to finish off his second hat-trick in the league. In which case you’ve really only got 3 to chose from (One of Kevin Gallacher’s 3 in Blackburn Rovers’ 5-0 thrashing of Aston Villa on 17 January 1998. *NOTE: This was correct at time of typing, Christ knows what Charlie Adam has up his sleeve this weekend, My guess would be sausage rolls).

Charlie Adam. Sausage rolls behind back.
Anyway, my point was my favourite goal was Chic Charnley’s goal for Hibs against Alloa in the league cup from about 60 yards, and dont bother you-tubing this, Scotsport decided that there was no point in filming the game that day and therefore no-one outside the 15,000 (yes, we got that many) in the ground witnessed this.

I also remember fondly the Latapy-Mixu_LaaaattttaaapppppY goal in the 6-2 game against Hearts and even David Zitelli scoring a belter against AEK Athens to almost get up through in the UEFA cup.

Charnley. Strangely reminiscent in looks and pose of James Caan in the Godfather, when he's being machine-gunned at that tollbooth.
The point of this piece was not to dribble on about the greatest goals at Easter Road though (shut up, there have been a few), and this isn’t about my favourite goal. It’s about that one goal that I can neither stand, nor understand why it is so revered.

Paul “Gazza” Gascoigne’s goal.

Thats probably all I need to type and most of you will already know the goal I’m talking about, but for the Jamie Andrews of this world I’m talking about the goal against Scotland in Group A of Euro 96. THAT goal. I think most impartial fans would see this goal as a beauty and most Scotland fans with a hint of maturity and composure would also agree it was a cracker. I, however, cannot. It’s one of the very few amazing goals that induces no emotion in me at all, apart from a little hatred and remorse. There is no logic to this, but since when has a football fan had to show logic in his emotions? Never. Thats the reason Spock never appeared on the bridge of the Enterprise in a Forfar Athletic top. Why Forfar? You can’t watch and episode of Star Trek without him declaring his love to the team. “Live long and Forfar”.

So back to Gazza and that ball dipping delightfully over Colin Hendry, before being smashed past Andy Goram. there are 2 reasons why I cant stomach this goal or come to tell myself it’s as good as everyone says it is.

1) It forever tainted my first experience with beer
2) the penalty 3 minutes earlier!

Gazza, that famous celebration. Looking back on it, anyone unaware of "The Dentist's Chair" and being told "It's a play on what they got up to on tour in Hong Kong..." could have got completely the wrong idea.
Let me elaborate, I was 13 year old when Euro 96 was being played out South of the Border, and I had already had a few experiences with alcohol – all cider based. During this game I was at my uncle’s place and he gave me a Miller. I cant say I was enjoying it greatly, but when Scotland were awarded a penalty at 1-0 down the living room erupted. So much anticipation was in that room that no one noticed the fact that my uncle had ran through from the toilet mid-stream and was proceeding to dance like a man needing to rush back to the room while taking the great risk of manually stopping the flow. Still, that miss by McAllister – or rather that save by Seaman, had greatly ruined what could have been a great impromptu mosh pit there in the living room in which I would more than likely have been killed. Then Gazza struck, a neat ball from Teddy’s favourite autograph signer Darren Anderton [Listen to Ep1 of the podcast…], but on the whole just a goal that did nothing for me but increase the score. I hated Paul Gascoigne at that moment and I hated him even more over the coming months. First, my Rangers-supporting friends all bragged about what an amazing goal it was, and then slowly but surely all the other football fans came around and told me how it was the greatest goal an England player has scored. No, No it wasn’t. Colin Hendry lying on the ground and a chip and hope flick were the main producers of that goal. The toe-poke shot wasn’t all that bad, but I still think Goram could have done better. I think it’s obvious by now that at the end of that game it wasn’t just the Miller that had left a bitter taste in my mouth.

1996 - England's midfield genius tricks Scotland's captain. 2012 - a photo of an alcoholic flicking the ball over a gambling addict. Memories are immortal, let's stick with those.
So, for all you football fans, I’d like to know how you feel about this. More importantly though, do you have any similar examples? A goal everyone sees as great but you just can’t see why? Or perhaps an example of the opposite. A goal you have seen that makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up, yet nobody else seems to appreciate the magic of? Please comment below, I’ll even try to address a few in the next chapter of this Hibernian fan’s scrawlings of lunacy.

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About the Author

Richard Hunter did his first stand-up gig in 2007, and that experience turned out to be so amazing he didn’t set foot on stage again until 2009. In Australia. After 2 years of travelling around the land Down Under (leave that joke alone) he came back to Britain and started gigging 9 months after his return. Apparently it takes time to get of your arse and look for gigs, plus it was best if he waited until his teeth stopped chittering. He has been taking stand up seriously for around 8 months now and has written for News Jack on BBC radio 4 and is to be seen in new BBC Three comedy drama Pram Face. Although if you go to make a cup of tea you will probably miss him. He is a lifelong Hibernian fan/sufferer who sincerely believes that he will see Hibs lift the Scottish Cup before he gets married, but please don’t pass on that information to his current girlfriend as she may want to be married before 2050.  

Richard’s greatest asset is his ability to read and entertain the audience
Edinburgh Evening News

A class act, it wont be long before he is seen on his own rather than supporting others
Melbourne HeraldSun

Can you please clean your room and do the bloody dishes
Every person I’ve ever lived with. 1990-Present

Richard Hunter’s a Gazza Goal Sceptic

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One thought on “Richard Hunter’s a Gazza Goal Sceptic

  • January 30, 2012 at 9:23 pm
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    Hi Rich, i have to say that for me it is Zinedine Zidane in the Champions League final at Hampden that time. I don’t know why but I HATE that goal.

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