The Spaniard had shown signs of brilliance, and of the ‘old Torres’ of Liverpool and Atletico throughout the game at Old Trafford, and with a goal already to his name, looked set to bag his second, and give United a nervy last 7 minutes or so. However, much to Sir Alex Ferguson’s pleasure, and to Fernando’s horror, the Spaniard sliced his shot wide with just the gaping goal at his mercy, and his performance on the field up until that point was forgotten, almost unimportant.
Torres can take some comfort in the knowledge that he is not the only forward to have missed a sitter, and Wayne Rooney himself had missed from the penalty spot ‘JT style’ earlier on in the half. In light of El Nino’s horror miss, we take a look at the top 5 flop shots from some very well known names. Enjoy!
Kanu v Middlesborough (2004)
Our number five comes from the Hawthornes and from the former Arsenal striker Kanu back in 2004. With West Brom moving the ball through of the Middlesborough area, it is eventually drilled across the face of the goal and reaches an unmarked Kanu at the back post with only contact required to level the score. Somehow, Kanu gets it all wrong and ends up putting the ball over the top, and made himself a contender for miss of the decade in the process.
Fernando Torres v Manchester United (2011)
That miss. The one everyone is talking about right now, only gets in at number 4 in our top 5. Fernando Torres has played easily his best game since signing for Chelsea, and though his side are 3-1 down, his goal at the start of the half had restored hope that the Spaniard could rediscover his finest form. Torres skips past David de Gea in goal, and with only the simplest of tap-ins left for him to do, Chelsea’s number 9 slices horribly wide, much to the delight of the Stretford end.
Diego Forlan v Juventus (2003)
A European affair at number three when Manchester United took on Juventus in their pre-season tour of USA in 2003. Perhaps the fact it was pre-season, and United were 4-1 up at the time, took some of the attention away from this miss, but Diego Forlan must still remember it today. A mix up between the Juve keeper and defender allows the United striker to run clean through on goal, with the option of walking the ball into the net. Instead, the Uruguayan takes the shot with his left peg only to see the ball wide harmlessly into the side netting.
Kenny Dalglish v Manchester United (1980)
A trip back to Old Trafford at number two, and another former Liverpool man misses the easiest of chances at the Stretford End. Alan Hansen beats the offside trap and runs clean through on goal with just the keeper to beat.
In an attempt to make things easier for Hansen, King Kenny arrives on his left and is given the simplest of tap-ins. Instead, Liverpool’s number 7 somehow manages to put his effort wide of the goal – again much to the delight of the United fans behind the goal. Although Dalglish had been judge to have been offside, he wasn’t to know and this takes nothing away from how bad a miss this ultimately was.
Ronny Rosenthal v Aston Villa (1992)
Of course at number one we have THAT miss. The ‘Ronny Rosenthal’. The Aston Villa defence fail to deal with a long ball up from the Liverpool keeper, and once the ball bounces kindly for Rosenthal he finds himself one-on-one with the keeper and all the time in the world. Like Torres, Ronny takes the ball past the keeper with ease but, unlike Torres, has the time to take an extra touch before firing it into the net. Unfortunately for Rosenthal, he instead fires the ball on to the cross bar – a miss that even now some 20 years later, is still remembered as one of the misses of all time. We can expect in another 20 years or so, this miss will still be in the top 5 ‘flop shots’ of all time, if not still at number one.
What do you think to my TOP 5 ‘Flop Shots’? Anyone I’ve missed out? Let me know either below or @sixthofficial on Twitter!