Grafite (Wolfsburg v Bayern Munich, 2009)

Sat in the coffee shop inside the stadium of his current club, Al Ahli in Dubai, Grafite is only too happy to recall the day his wonder goal for Wolfsburg helped topple the mighty Bayern Munich. As the Brazilian striker watches his mazy dribble on YouTube with FFT, his face lights up and the memories return...

“The game was on April 4, two days after my birthday. We were playing Bayern Munich so everybody – the whole city of Wolfsburg – stopped for this game. I had plenty of motivation because the fans had given me many birthday gifts. I wanted to do something for them. Plus, of course, it was Bayern.

“During the game I thought I wasn’t going to get a chance. When you play with two strikers, sometimes the ball keeps going to the other guy – and everyone kept passing to Edin Dzeko. I wasn’t feeling good.

“But then I scored this goal [to make the final score 5-1]. I’ve always tried to score a backheel like that in training – I tried all the time! – but in a game you never get the chance for it to happen.

“I managed it once before in 2007, for Le Mans against Lille, but that was nothing like this. To do it against the top team in Germany was amazing.

“It was my most important, most beautiful goal. It was so important because winning this game put us into first place, and in position to win the league for the first time.

“People have asked: do you think you could score a goal like this again? I say I don’t think it is possible. If you look at the defenders, the ball went over the foot of one of them, then passed behind another one running in to block.

“It could only happen once. Against Bayern Munich. In the week of my birthday. The year you finish champions. And I finished top scorer in the league. It was fantastic.”

Interview: Paul Radley. Illustration: German Aczel. From the July 2013 issue of FourFourTwo, out now. Subscribe!