Goalkeepers coming up for a corner is a dying art at the elite level, so when one trundles their way up the field to the delight of the crowd, sticking out like a sore thumb in their bright jersey and gloves ready to wreak havoc, you know you could be in for an all-timer moment.
Managers hate it. That’s why it’s reserved for the most desperate of times – and even then you can see the impending dread flush out their face as they reluctantly wave their number one forward. Like something out of an EastEnders death scene.
When they venture forward, it’s a moment of magic. A rare thing of beauty that you’re simply happy to have witnessed. Nine times out of 10, the keeper arrives in the box and causes a bit of disruption before disappointingly sprinting back towards their goal in order to not be caught out.
But every now and then, we’re treated to a moment of magic from the footballing Gods. A crowning moment of immortality. The footballing equivalent to a wrestler reaching under the ring, holding aloft a silk bag and scattering a bed of thumbtacks across the canvas.
It’s met with an almighty disbelief, tinged with complete euphoria.
It’s the goalkeeper fulfilling the dream from the night before. The night before every single game day – scoring from the corner.
There truly is no moment like it. No instance that could replicate the emotion and ecstasy it fills everybody with, from the goalkeeper to the coaches to the fans of each team.
Alisson gave Liverpool a moment to remember forever when he headed in an injury-time winner for Liverpool against West Brom back in May 2021, somehow bringing to life an empty stadium. But we regret to inform you Liverpool fans that the Brazilian’s moment of magic has unfortunately been topped by a moment of sheer outrageousness.
Non-league has struck again, with Newhaven FC of the Southern Combination Premier Division gifting us an absolute howitzer for the ages.
Jake Buss (@NewhavenFC vs Little Common)
*Goalkeeper goal klaxon*
— Planet Football (@planetfutebol) August 29, 2023
Come. On. Have some mercy, Jake Buss. A goal that deserves Peter Drury’s very best work over the top of it.
Wandered up into no man’s land with his side in search of a point to salvage something from a game they trail in. And under the floodlights, with an impassioned non-league crowd watching on, he channels his inner Peter Schmeichel.
The ball looks like it might break for Little Common to counter-attack an empty net, but Buss has positioned himself on the edge of the box and regained possession. Brilliant, now lay it into the striker and we have a chance. He’s already been a hero.
Of course he didn’t do that. He’d never do that. None of us would. When the lights are brightest, the adrenaline is high and the yard of space opens up, there’s only one option – shoot and hope for the best.
But Buss didn’t just do that. No.
Instead, like a prime David Beckham looking to guide the ball into the net like it’s an expensive antique, with all the finesse in the world, the Newhaven keeper – and captain – wraps his boot around the ball and sends it curling into the top corner, before wheeling off in rampant celebration.
Bovril’s probably gone everywhere out of shot. Chicken balti pies being thrown around like wildlife. Non-league heritage.
His opposite number helpless, he’d just etched himself into the history books forever. Forget non-league, this is one of the all-time great goalkeeper goals.
Alisson’s header takes a backseat, and we’re almost certain he’d agree. A moment everyone in that ground will remember for the rest of their lives.
By Mitch Wilks