Thursday, 13 September 2007

Top 5 Fulham Goals

My memory for the details of games is actually shocking so there could well be some great goals I saw that I just don't remember. Kamara's overhead kick to equalise against Spurs is a recent contender, Louis Saha's against Newcastle another, and Sean O'Driscoll's goal direct from a corner against Newport County also memorable. However, I reckon the fact this lot have stuck in my head so firmly means they're worthy entrants. As always your welcome to add your own selection in the comments, that's the beauty of Top 5 lists, they're not supposed to be definitive just your favourite choices.

1. Gordon Davies from the left wing against Chesterfield (30th Jan 1982)

2. Simon Morgan header against Villa in Cup (23rd Jan 1999)

3. Rodney MacAree at Carlisle (5th April 1997)

4. "Super" Mick Conroy from the half way line at Wycombe (12th August 1997)

5. Kevin Moore equaliser against Walsall (13th August 1994)

I must have seen Gordon Davies score a hundred goals but I can't actually remember many of them. I guess Ivor was more of a "fox in the box" than a 40 yard man. This one has never left me though. A hoofed clearance from Roger Brown was latched onto by our Ivor who then shot from somewhere near the Stevenage Road byline right in front of the Cottage. It probably wasn't as far out as my memory would have me believe, but it was certainly not an angle from where you'd expect anyone to score. It shot past the Chesterfield 'keeper though and hit the back of the net, 1-0 Fulham, game over! A glorious goal.

The trip up to Villa Park for this 4th round F.A. Cup match was probably my first trip to a big ground with Fulham. I remember being stunned at how big the Holt End was and never believed we would get away with a win. Eight minutes in though and Simon Morgan rose to head home a Stevie Hayward free kick. I don't think I've ever seen Morgs get up so high and it was a real bullet header into the back of the net. Amazingly we went on to put in a really solid performance and after Stevie H had added a second just before half time, managed to defend our lead against the team that were then top of the Premier League.

OK, I have to admit I'm breaking my own rules here. I wasn't at Carlisle. I was with the three other guys I regular go to the football with at a mates stag do in London. None of us were best pleased with the timing but there was no choice to make. We bundled into a pub to try and catch news of the game and find out the Grand National result. The National had been cancelled but when news came through that we'd won 2-1 we were ecstatic. I couldn't have a top 5 list that didn't include this wonder volley from McAree, probably the most important goal in the history of the club so far. "Who put the ball in the Carlisle net? Rodney McAree!"

It was a first round league cup match, but Wycombe wasn't too far away and ground we'd never been to before. There'd been some chaos getting into the ground at the start and we'd ended up down the side in with a mixture of Fulham and Wycombe fans. Half the Fulham squad, including Kit Symons, were sitting behind us as well. It was a quiet sort of game, we weren't expecting too much as the teams trooped off at half time with the scores tied at 1-1. Then it happened. "Super" Mick Conroy controlled the ball in the centre circle, and then shot. "What the hell are you do ...? Oh my G ... GOOOOOAAALLLLLLLLL!!!". An unbelievable strike, I never thought it was likely to be even close but back then "Super" Mick could do no wrong. It wasn't quite from the half way line but it was near as damn it, and why should we let the facts get in the way of a good song.

My final choice is unlikely to be a goal many people remember. It was our first home match in the basement division, I had taken a philosophical view to relegation the previous season believing we could waltz the league title and re-establish ourselves once again. However, the stark reality of live at the bottom did not take long to hit home. The game was a fairly even affair but Walsall had taken the lead in the first half through Kyle Lightbourne. Attacking the Hammy End in the second half we just couldn't quite find the cutting edge to pull one back, until, in the final minutes, new signing Kevin Moore rose to head home a corner. I celebrated this goal like no other, the emotion of relegation and 15 years of steady decline had built up to the point where I actually shed tears of joy. Of course in the end it would get worse before it got better, but right then it seemed that we had finally turned the corner.

No comments: