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Top 10 Clichéd Goal Celebrations

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Getting on the score sheet, footballers tell us, is "always nice". There are various methods via which they choose to express this glee, but the tried-and-trusted ones never go out of fashion. Here's ten of the most clichéd goal celebrations courtesy of Football Clichés...

1. The knee-slide

An extremely camera-friendly celebration, excellent proponents of this particular technique are Steven Gerrard, Didier Drogba and, among the managers, Jose Mourinho. Only advisable when the playing surface is greasy, the correct method is a shallow jump, followed by as long a slide as possible. In a rare articulation between football and curling, any slide that ends just before the corner flag or touchline is considered the benchmark.

2. The Tardelli

The purest, most beautiful goal celebration of them all. Unbridled joy. The 1982 original's magic is in the bend of the run, the fact that he's not sure what to do with himself and the perfect setting of a World Cup final.

However, despite its basic appeal, it is something we are yet to witness properly from an Englishman. Much like moped-riding and tight jeans, it is apparently something only Italians can carry off - other exponents include Filippo Inzaghi and Paolo Di Canio.

3. Grabbing the ball

Another classic, if perhaps not strictly a celebration. The context can vary slightly, but the general theme is the same. A team requires two or more goals to get back level in a game/cup tie, and they scramble home the first of them. The scorer then tries, as hard as he did to get the ball in the net, to reclaim the ball in order to hasten the game's restart. This is, as we all should know, utterly pointless.

Nevertheless, the scorer's determination to claim the ball and take it back to the centre circle is often matched only by the opposing goalkeeper's desire to stop him doing so. This is a frequent source for the phenomenon known as "handbags".


 

4. The slalom

Usually the celebration of choice for players who may not often get the chance, the slalom requires skill and speed to gleefully evade any teammates intent on mobbing them. Another example of an expression of raw emotion, but perhaps without the gravitas and drama of the aforementioned Tardelli.


5. The Messiah

There are moments of genius that can be capped with the sort of celebration only a supreme bit of skill deserves. With arms outstretched, "receiving" the fans acclaim, the player does not need to run anywhere. Let the plaudits come to him. An understated gem of a celebration.

This celebration often appears to signal the icing on the cake - the completion of a hat-trick, a last-minute sealer in a major final, or the last goal of a championship-winning season.

6. Pointing at your own name

One of the more awkward goal celebrations, requiring a 180-degree swivel while running towards the crowd, with both of the goalscorer's thumbs pointing down to the name on the back of his shirt. An often ill-advised act of showmanship, but a handy reminder to anyone who may have actually forgotten his name.


 

7. The Jump 'n Punch

Another solid and traditional method. Often the celebration of choice when a schoolboy dreams about scoring a cup-final goal, the jump and punch represents an effective expression of joy. The take-off must be judged accurately, like a long jump attempt, and the air-punch perfectly timed to coincide with the zenith of the leap.

8. The backflip(s)

An example of when the impressiveness of the celebration bears no relation to the quality of the goal being celebrated. However, one must not begrudge these gymnasts their opportunity. This spectacular method has traditionally been reserved exclusively for African imports such as Obafemi Martins, Celestine Babayaro...and Peter Beagrie.


 

 

9. The Touchline Beeline

A goalscorer, wishing to show emphatic support for an under-fire manager, may wish to dedicate their goal by running directly to the dugout. This must be accompanied by a direct point of the finger to establish to all and sundry the destination of the celebration. One of the more heartwarming goal celebrations, along with the baby-cradling method pioneered by Brazil's Bebeto at USA '94.

10. The non-celebration

The turnover of players in the modern era is such that strikers are continually finding the net on their old stomping grounds against former clubs. This has led to the frequent appearance of the non-celebration, as the straight-faced goalscorer reluctantly (but very, very knowingly) accepts the congratulations of his utterly unconcerned teammates. Often acclaimed as "classy" or "a nice touch", the non-celebration is deceptively egotistical, so successful is it in drawing attention to the supposedly limelight-shunning scorer.

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