Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Goalnets, Ball Retention and the Aesthetic of Scoring Goals - Two Penalties

Two famous, decisive, near-identical penalties, 34 years apart.

One penalty is retained by the goalnets, while the other is repelled.

Is the Abreu penalty, which rebounds out before the goalkeeper has even got back to his feet, somehow lacking in the aesthetic of the decisive?

Does Panenka's kick, which floats past Sepp Maier and stays past Sepp Maier, better serve the occasion?

Which do you prefer?

Monday, September 20, 2010

The Championship - Scunthorpe Utd

A friend messaged to advise us to look at some of the goalnets in the Championship. There, free from the fascism of the free-hanging boxnet, we were assured we could find some diamonds of diversity.

And it's true. Spy the shape of the Continental D's The Iron have installed at Glanford Park -

Goalnets and Aesthetics #4 - Two free kicks

Compare Koeman's dink into the stanchions versus England -

with Juan Roman Riquelme's chip-shot versus Bolivia, where the goalnets at Monumental are stretched so taut, JRR might've been shooting into goals painted on a wall.

Which do you prefer?

Goalnets and Ball Retention #4 - Two rockets!

The goalnets at the modern-day Stamford Bridge have some of the poorest ball-retaining properties in football. Boxes made of trampoline, stretched taut by a bottom net support which runs a mere metre behind the goal line, make for goals with poor aesthetics and even worse ball retention. Consider these examples:

Johnny Metgod's rocket hits the bar and goes in

While Alex's rocket goes in - but rebounds out like it's hit the bar

Friday, September 17, 2010

The Championship - Leeds Utd

Over the years, Leeds have changed the on-field architecture about as often as they've changed managers.

Under Don Revie, from the 60's -

through to the early 70's, when they installed Continental D's (and from 3.00, extracted the urine) -

Revie went and Cloughie came and went - and the Continental D's went with him;

Leeds were relegated with Alan Clarke, came back with Howard Wilkinson, and won the first Division, all with Continental D's -

They continued with George Graham through the mid-90's, with only a slight alteration to the D;

Then came Dr Faustus dressed as David O'Leary, to whom the Devil offered a deal. You can live the dream -

But you'll need to install box goalnets...

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Castles in Spain

Do you remember the original premise of this blog? Goalnets were once so diverse and different from ground to ground, that you could catch a glimpse of a game on TV and know instantly where the game was being played - because of the goalnets.

As such, you could turn on your telly in the 70's and know these curvy, Latin stanchions are Real Madrid

And these unconventional, Northern stanchions are Barcelona

Bolton Wanderers

You wouldn't go to Bolton to find innovation in on-field architecture.

As much as the clean blue and white lines at the Reebok this season look like geometrically correct prototypes for boxnets in Season 10/11 -

 So the same or similar, stanchions of yesteryear could be found at Old Trafford or Elland Road.

But NOWHERE ELSE would you see a goal like Frank Worthington's!

Greenock Morton FC

In the late 70's, Greenock Morton were a force to be reckoned with in the Scottish Premier League. With Andy Ritchie - the original idle idol - they were briefly table-toppers, late in 1978.

The glamour's all there in this clip - the South American bendy free-kick; the World Cup adidas Tango football; the Scottish goalkeeper, Alan Rough, wearing what looks like an International shirt he swapped for at the end of a Scotland game (and getting beaten by a free-kick at the same post, just like Peru's 3rd goal at the World Cup, and 'reacting' just like Peru's 2nd goal!)

Only the sad, creaking stanchions suggest where Morton came from, and to where they'd soon return.

Oxford Utd

Freed from the shackles of their old Manor Ground - where admittedly they had fantastic square stanchions, (then rather ordinary Continental D's ) - at Kassam Stadium in season 09/10, Oxford installed a masterclass set of Continental D's;

Might they remind you of a couple of Scotland games at the World Cup? First, versus Holland in Mendoza, Argentina

And versus Brazil in Seville, Spain

(they're not Continental D supports, but they look just as marvellous)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Blackpool FC

Back in the big time, Blackpool's nets are big, brash and colourful.

Back in the 1970's, Blackpool were in the old Division 2 and the nets hung on these, extra-kinky stanchions (similar to the old Stamford Bridge.)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Southampton FC

At The Dell, Southampton used to have the littlest of Little Ones.

Little Ones may not be your cup of tea, but you could look at this goal and know immediately it was Southampton.

Now at St Mary's, the goalnets are boxes made of trampoline like everybody else's.

But spy the fancy red and white tubing, and the obvious decision to let the nets hang loose, and, in their own way, the St Mary's nets might be thought as distinctive as the old ones at The Dell. A goal scored into them is certainly more aesthetically pleasing.

Bristol Rovers

Trawling youtube for examples of Little Ones, I came across these amazing Wembley lookalikes at Bristol Rovers, circa 1974.

After Euro '76, they cleared the snow off the lines and traded the full stanchions for a pair of Continental 'D's.

The goalnets at Memorial Stadium in 2010 may be boxes, but they aren't made of trampoline.