Video stars: Gifts, gaffes, slips and chips

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VIDEO STARS! The best goals, gaffes and gormless actions of the last week, all collected together for you... 

There was a pleasing variety of own goals across Europe this weekend, with players getting into the gift-giving spirit. Note the determination of Osasuna’s Miguel Flaño to hold his ground in front of the crowd, allowing him to safely nod home Valladolid’s second – which was crucial in helping the visitors snatch an unlikely draw from three down. Feliz Navidad! 

Christmas is always a nice time to catch up with old friends, and Nice defender Olivier Echouafni scored for his old club Marseille last weekend with an acrobatic flick over his own goalkeeper. "Spectaculaire," as the commentator quite correctly puts it. Joyeux Noel!

Meanwhile in Italy, noting the rampaging run from Inter wing-back Maicon, Lazio defender Mobido Diakité got across his man at the near post to rifle into his own top corner and put Mourinho's men in control. Natale allegro!

Diakité: "Doh!" 

All good goalscorers know that goals can come in gluts. All Stockport fans know that so do own-goals, after they gifted two to visitors Peterborough last weekend. 

Firstly, skipper Michael Raynes nipped in at the near post to divert it past his own keeper and give Posh the lead. Then team-mate James Tunnicliffe made it safe with a close-range shinner. They all count, Brian, tuck them away...

The Hatters didn't have it all their own way in last weekend's League One oggy-fest. Arguably the best of the lot came from Carlisle's Peter Murphy, who volleyed in off his own bar to put Swindon in front.

Meanwhile in the basement, Barnet's Michael Townsend kept his compsure to tuck home a six-yard header and make it safe for Luton at 3-1. 


The Christmas spirit is obviously informing proceedings up the other end too, as strikers fail to show the ruthlessness needed to score.

Firstly, a bit of Brazilian magic from Roma's Julio Baptista, who reminded Arsenal and Real Madrid fans what they're missing against Chievo by putting a six-yard shot in the only place it wasn't a goal.

Baptista: "Gah!" 

More of the same in Portugal. With the Sporting Lisbon goalkeeper – who'd already made a howler, as we'll see later – stranded and begging for mercy, Amadora striker Anselmo managed to hit the frame of the goal from inside the six-yard box.

Finally, our old mate Steve Corica – now paying the bills as Sydney FC captain – just couldn't finish the job at Newcastle Jets, missing not one but two chances from close-range.


That last clip might be ascribed to decent goalkeeping saving abject Newcastle defending (not for the first time, etc). But goalies aren't always the heroes, are they? Ask Sporting Lisbon keeper Patricio, who pushed the ball into the path of Amadora striker Anselmo for 1-0.

Then there's Athletic Bilbao's Gorka Iraizoz. With time running out at Racing Santander and the Basques on course for their first away win in six months, Gonzalo Colsa curled in a hopeful cross, presenting Iraizoz with a routine catch. Which he decided to fumble into the back of the net to cost his drop-dodging side two points.

Also in Spain, Malaga keeper Inaki Goitia made a three-course meal of a free-kick from Deportivo la Coruna’s Angel Lafita, bundling it in for a 1-0 lead.

In fact, it's been a bad week for Spanish keepers. Holding hotshots Atletico Madrid at 1-1, Sporting Gijon keeper Iván Cuellár presented a Forlan effort straight to Kun Aguero. Oops. It ended up 5-2 to the visitors.

The bad run extended into Europe, to the delight of Celtic fans, who saw Villarreal keeper Sebastian Viera drop a common-or-garden cross to Shaun Maloney for 1-0 (in the same week that their own keeper, Artur Boruc, had been embarrassed from distance against Hibs). At the same time, Zenit keeper Vyacheslav Malafeev was fumbling a cross to record goalscorer Raul to put Real Madrid in a lead they never looked like losing.

Ball-boy: "Yeeeeeaaahhhh!!!!!" 

At Dynamo Kiev, Fenerbahce keeper Volkan Demirel found himself far from home, far from his goal and far from successful in a sh*t-or-bust dash out of his area. Goal, loss, exit.

A fellow Champions League sufferer was Anorthosis’ back-up keeper Zoltan Nagy, who saw his dream chance turn to a nightmare in the do-or-die Hellenic clash with Panathinaikos.

Although Giorgios Karagounis intercepted Cedric Bardon’s terrible pass in the general direction of Giannis Skopeletis, his weak shot shouldn’t have been a problem. But it went in, and Anorthosis went out.


Mind you, keepers aren't helped by the wazzocks in front of them. The last thing you need at 5-1 down is a defender giving it to the bloke who’s already bagged two. But that’s what this Wellington Phoenix defender did, inviting Adelaide United’s Cristiano to complete the rout.

And when Atletico Madrid are on form, don't dally like Sporting Gijon’s dozy defender Iván Hernández, robbed by Diego Forlan for 4-1. Note the quite superb commentary thereafter.

Don't bother trying to fix something you've broken by wrestling the striker to the floor, like Malaga’s Brazilian defender Wellington did at Deportivo: Penalty, 2-0, game over. Mind, as we've seen with the free-kick that had already put Depor in front, his keeper's not up to much.

There was some great defending over here too this week. We loved the old-school Route One goal that put Palace 3-0 up against Southampton, aided inestimably by Southampton's Lloyd James utterly failing to deal with the clearance.

Soton keeper Davis: "Dur!" 

Bristol Rovers' Aaron Lescott set up Millwall's Tresor Kandol with an inch-imperfect back-pass to make it 2-0 and game over. And all Cardiff's usually reliable Roger Johnson had to do at Burnley was put his foot through it; instead he kicked the post and Burnley levelled.


OK then, credit where it's due. Jeremy Menez has struggled at Roma but his right-foot volley vs Chievo inspired its very own blog.

Another Serie A player you've heard about on is Juve wonderkid Sebastian Giovinco; we told you how Claudio Ranieri has asked interested parties like Arsenal and West Ham to bog off, and no wonder when he can hit a free-kick like this.

Also capable of hitting a mean free-kick is Queensland Roar's Dutchman Sergio van Dijk, who larrupped a left-footer from "fully" 30 yards at Central Coast Mariners, as did Coventry's Daniel Fox at Charlton.

You don't have to wait for a free-kick to pog it from distance. Perth Glory’s Adriano Pellegrino found the top corner from 25 yards with a left-footer against Melbourne Victory, QPR's Martin Rowlands lashed home a 20-yarder against Wolves and Palace's Patrick McCarthy had a go from 40 at Derby.

There were two crackers at Reggina-Bologna, with Edgar Barreto's 30-yard first-timer matched by Marco di Vaio's Di Canio-esque left-foot volley. Also finding the goal from range were Tranmere's Ian Moore against Leeds, Northampton's Liam Davis against Orient, and the departing Darren Anderton for Bournemouth against Chester.

You want volleys? We had Scunny's Ian Morris opening the scoring at MK Dons, Walsall's Alex Nichol equalising at Huddersfield and Wycombe's Angelo Balanta at Aldershot.

Morris (right): "Ithankyew" 

We'll finish in Spain, though, with the two big guns – who go head to head this weekend – providing some class.

First, Barcelona. Sylvinho’s sweet 20-yard left-footer was some consolation in the dead rubber against Shakhtar, while Barça's superb counter-attack against Valencia proved the folly of visiting right-back Miguel arguing up the field with the ref. You don't give Thierry Henry that much space to play in.   

Finally, Real Madrid. Gonzalo Higuain's muscular run and 25-yard daisy-cutter wasn't enough to beat Sevilla, but new boss Juande Ramos watched Arjan Robben and Raul both scoop the ball over hapless Zenit keeper Vyacheslav Malafeev.

Chips for tea? Must be Friday.

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