The penalty shoot-out is perhaps football’s cruelest mistress. After 120 minutes of football the penalty shoot-out is used to produce a decisive winner. The lottery of the shoot-out can create heroes and villains, propelling goalkeepers to greatness and reducing strikers to the waste heap. Below are some of the best goalkeeping performances in penalty shoot-outs.
Jerzy Dudek vs. AC Milan
The Liverpool goalkeeper was in inspired form in the 2005 Champions League Final. As well as keeping them in the game, he went on to save penalties from Andrea Pirlo and Andriy Shevchenko. Like fellow Liverpool ‘keeper Bruce Grobbelaar, Dudek employed a “spaghetti legs” tactic to put his opponents off.
Oleksandr Shovkovskiy vs. Switzerland
The Ukrainian stopper made history in the 2006 World Cup. Playing Switzerland, he became the first goalkeeper not to concede a penalty, sending Ukraine through to the next round with a 3-0 penalty victory.
Jens Lehmann vs. Argentina
The ex-Arsenal ‘keeper aided Germany’s progression through to the semi-finals of the 2006 World Cup with his penalty heroics against Argentina. The wily German had ingeniously put a note in his sock about the penalty preferences of the Argentine players. He went on to save two penalties.
Pepe Reina vs. West Ham
Signed to replace Dudek, Reina pulled off similar penalty heroics as the Pole had done the year before. The 2006 FA cup final needed penalties to decide it. Reina, who had been at fault for two of the West Ham goals, redeemed himself in the shoot-out, saving three penalties as Liverpool went on to lift the cup.
The penalty shoot-out is ultimately a lottery; there is an elementary slice of luck and is a battle of wits as well. If this sounds right up your street, why not check out the Manor Gaming online casino mobile app?
For goalkeepers, penalty kicks are the hardest job. Within a second, a player can line up, place the ball to the goal, and score before the goalie even has a chance to think what to do! It is always a good idea to have a preplanned (and pre-practiced) strategy for penalty kicks, if you are a keeper. Read the story »
Swansea may need something from their final group game in the Europa League to qualify for the next stage of the competition after losing to Valencia 1-0 on Thursday evening at the Liberty Stadium.
After a beating the Spanish side 3-0 away from home earlier in the campaign, in what was one of the club’s biggest wins in their history, Michael Laudrup’s men went into the game as favourites on the bet365 website, but Daniel Parejo’s first half goal was enough to separate the two teams in Wales.
Valencia will top of the group regardless of results in Group A on the final matchday. Swansea currently sit second in the table, three points ahead of Kuban Krasnodar.
The Welsh club will take on FC St Gallen away from home on December 12 as they look to secure qualification. A defeat could still be ok depending on the result in the other tie.
Swansea’s best chance against Valencia came through Alvaro Vasquez but Jeremy Mathieu did well for the visitors to clear the effort off the line.
There was further bad news for the Swans last night as striker Wilfried Bony was taken off with a hamstring injury just before the interval. He is likely to be out of action for several weeks.
Later in the game defender Angel Rangel also picked up a knock, at that point the Swans had already used their three substitutions therefore had to finish the game with 10 men.
Swansea will now take on Manchester City in the Premier League on Saturday at the Etihad Stadium. They will be looking to build on their 2-1 win over Fulham in their last domestic fixture and also extend their unbeaten run to three games. The bet365 odds are not sympathetic to the Swans chances, however.