Soccerstoriesbook's Blog


TO DIVE, OR NOT TO DIVE
September 3, 2011, 8:01 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , ,

Still making the rounds on the Internet was a clip of a stunning goal scored August 25 by Jeremain Lens during a match between host PSV Eindhoven and Austrian upstart SV Ried in the second leg of the Europa League’s third qualifying round.

With PSV on its way to a 5-0 rout, Lens ran onto a ball sent down the right wing, and Ried goalkeeper Thomas Gebauer raced some 35 yards off his line in an attempt to snuff out the breakaway.  Gebauer’s tackle managed to knock Lens to the turf, but the Dutch international bounced to his feet, chased the ball into the corner and lofted a long shot with the outside of his right foot that curved off  the far post and into the net off the right hand of the retreating Ried ‘keeper.

For a look, go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dyHMsCxPFs   [September 1]

Comment:  Granted, Lens had every reason to do his best to get an advantage call and continue his run for a chance at an open net because PSV couldn’t have done much with a distant free kick from inside the touchline.  But it was just a spectacular reminder that what’s maddening for fans when an attacking player dives to draw a penalty kick or short-range direct free kick isn’t just that it’s cynical and, at times, embarrassing for the player and the sport itself.  It’s that we all miss the chance to see something special, like a player riding or eluding that challenge and then perhaps going on to score a wonderful goal.

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