Goals in soccer come in all shapes and sizes. Some go in on purpose, and some are launched dozens of feet into the air by a defender for a goalie to just fumble on his own line, putting the ball into his own net.
During Europa League group-stage action on Thursday against Turkish club Galatasaray, Lazio goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha went to softly punch an attempted penalty-box clearance in the 67th minute — and then something hilariously embarrassing happened.
As Strakosha did a slight little jump to get control of the ball, it ended up hitting the goalpost, bouncing back on the befuddled keeper, and behind the line for the game’s opening goal.
To make it all that more crucial a mistake, it was the game’s only goal and the European mainstays suffered a competition-opening loss to the Turkish Süper Lig runners-up. Even without that context, this is a blooper that is destined for stardom, appearing on every daytime highlight show or online compilation for the foreseeable future.
It’s one thing when it’s some grainy footage of a non-professional team doing it in a school field, but on one of the biggest stages in the sport, opening game, and having it be the game-winning tally is just another level. The amount of humiliation that the Albanian international must be feeling right now is probably unfathomable.
At least it wasn’t during the knockout stage.
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