14 May 2012

Top 10 Liverpool Goals 2011-12

I figure we'll start the usual season wrap-up stuff with the easiest, most enjoyable post. Multiple infographics and an almost certainly depressing narrative season review to follow.

10) Carroll 1-2 Chelsea (FA)
9) Carroll 3-2 Blackburn

There's a footballer in there somewhere. These two vastly different goals demonstrate that. One, a quick-reaction late winner won in the air. The other, getting Liverpool back into the FA Cup final with clever dance moves and an unstoppable left-footed shot. The next step is Carroll demonstrating those football instincts much more frequently.

8) Suarez 1-0 Stoke (FA)
Suarez and Maxi, all up in your business, culminating with a top of the box musket shot past a forlorn Begovic. There should have been more of this this season.

7) Suarez 2-0 Wolves
Normally, when a keeper gets beat at his near post, the keeper's to blame. Not so much here. Quickly shifting from defense to attack, a well-placed ball over the top by Enrique, an expertly-timed run from Suarez. The Uruguayan seemingly took the ball too wide and delayed too long, allowing both Johnson and Berra time to get back. No matter. He bamboozled both, turning Johnson inside out and upside down before hammering past Hennessey. Also, I thoroughly enjoy how quick the commentator goes from blaming Wolves' offside trap to lauding the quality of the strike.

6) Bellamy 2-2 City (CC)
Not to downplay Kuyt's run around Lescott, Bellamy and Johnson's one-two, or the fleet-footed finish, but this isn't as picturesque, as aesthetically awesome as most of the other goals on this list. But it's importance can't be undervalued. Without this goal, Liverpool does not make the Carling Cup final, does not win its first trophy in six years, and does not even have the small consolation that is the League Cup. That and it's not as if we're spoilt for choice this season.

5) Kuyt 2-1 Cardiff (CC)
Okay, so maybe he didn't mean it. Maybe it was a lucky strike, and Kuyt's more frequent output is his first "effort"; I'm still not sure if that was a cross or shot. But if so, that somehow just makes it a more fitting capstone if this truly is the end of Dirk Kuyt's Liverpool career. By all rights, this should have been the goal that won the cup were Liverpool able to keep it together for all of three minutes. And that would have been the most fitting capstone for a man usually at his best in Liverpool's biggest games.

4) Suarez 2-0 Norwich
Suarez's third against Norwich – which is obviously coming later in the list – overshadowed the quality of this strike. It's cliché, but he could not have hit this better. An inch to the keeper's right, it's just one more off the woodwork. An inch to the keeper's left or an inch higher, it's saved. But it's perfect, p-e-r-f-e-c-t, which didn't happen nearly enough when Suarez took aim this season.

3) Suarez 1-1 Stoke (CC)
Of course, this also happened. Look, he's Luis Suarez. There's no explaining it. He will score unbelievable goals, waltz past or through defenders as if they're intangible, and curl shots into the far corner with an engineering's precision, then shoot wide when one-on-one with the keeper from 10 yards out. Love every inch of it when he does this and practice your deep breathing relaxation exercises when he does the other thing.

2) Coates 1-0 QPR'
I am biased by results. By rights, this should be #1. The technique is jaw-dropping; it's a better scissor kick than Rooney's against City last season, which won the popularity contest that was the best goal in Premier League history. Coates is a new-to-the-Premiership 21-year-old, 6'5" center-back who made just eight starts this season and speaks approximately eight words of English (just like Rooney).

But Liverpool did not win, somehow conceding three in 14 minutes to almost-relegated QPR, through little fault of Coates'. And that means this can't be #1. Sorry, Seb. There's always next year.

1) Suarez 3-0 Norwich
Unerring from fifty-something yards out, the ultimate kiss-both-cheeks capstone for Suarez's first Liverpool hat-trick. Also, in no way is this choice due to it filling me with painful pangs of Xabi Alonso remembrance. Nope. No siree.

Honorable Mention
• Gerrard 1-0 Everton (h)
Johnson 2-1 Chelsea (a)
• Essien OG 1-0 Chelsea (a)
Bellamy 2-1 Newcastle (h)
• Downing 5-1 Oldham (h)


Anonymous said...

Nate, just wanted to say thanks for your dedication through a tough LFC season. Those goals do at least serve as a reminder that even in a disappointing season there are always some wonderful moments of brilliance.


Shawn said...

Awesome stuff here Nate. I personally think #3 is the best. Brilliant nutmeg, then the curl on that shot is just out of this world. Can't go wrong with any of the top 3 though

Anonymous said...

Excellent. I echo nbusa's comments. I've truly enjoyed your work throughout the season.
One question though: why leave out Glen Johnson's goal in the league game at Chelsea? Given the timing and significance of it, it was definitely one of my favorites of the season.


Mike Georger said...

Hello, England?

Yeah I've got a copyright infringement to report. Uh huh. That's right.

But it's gonna cost you. That's right, all the Pimm's.

Or I blow up the 59th Street Bridge.


Anonymous said...

Fascinating how all 3 of the goals against Chelsea absolutely humiliate Terry, and brilliant blog you have here Nate, hopefully more enjoyable stuff for you to wrIte about next season. YNWA

nate said...

Appreciate the kind words, guys. Thanks much.

Johnson's goal v Chelsea very nearly made it in – it and Gerrard v Everton were the hardest to leave out – but I went with Suarez's two lower-ranked strikes and two different Carroll goals instead. Could have easily made the list.

Also, has England responded yet Georger? If they do, can I get a cut of your Pimm's? You don't need it all.