Frank Lampard’s ghost goal and crush Germany


Bloemfontein, South Africa, 2010. England Germany is playing for a place in the quarter-finals of the World Cup. Ugh. The dissonant and self-inflicted vuvuzela fills your ears. Ugh. Fabio Capello. Ugh. Fabio Capello sits on the bench with a face like melted wax and plays Steven Gerrard on the left wing. Double ugh. German Mesut Ozil scores the goal within four minutes. Ugh.

Somehow, impossibly, it only gets worse from there.

It is not unusual for England fans to feel a real sense of injustice at major tournaments. David Beckham and Wayne Rooney both received red cards that were as much a result of the opposing team’s over-dramatization as they were from the first moment of their own foolishness. Or at least that’s the way we like to frame it.

Moreover, losing on penalties can rarely be construed as an injustice, as the power of the football gods conspiring against you, but somehow we manage to classify them as such too, such is our evil habit of being knocked out by World Cups and Europeans. Tournaments by penalty kicks regularly.

In terms of emotional baggage, we already have all of that to grieve. True or false (definitely false). But then there’s Frank Lampard’s goal against Germany, which was, let’s be honest, a complete and outright farce. offense against football. disaster. scandal. This is nonsense of the first order.

While we, as a nation, have an inherent tendency to overreact, this was perhaps the only occasion when we were within our rights to light the torches and grab the pitchfork.

Let’s take a look at that and live through all that pain and trauma, shall we?

Harry Symeou hosts Semra Hunter, Andy Headspath and Toby Cudworth for a look at the South African 10 as part of their ‘Our World Cups’ series. We’re taking a trip down memory lane – join us!

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Germany takes the lead in less than 20 minutes with a brilliantly executed team move. Honestly, the quality of football is amazing. Manuel Neuer A long ball aimlessly burrows over the pitch, John Terry and Matthew Upson forget where they are, who they are and what sport they play, and Miroslav Klose wriggles to slip past David James. Phenomenal stuff. Really, really good. Sometimes you just have to sit back and praise the sheer artistry of the show. Hats off, Germany. truly. I am not bitter at all.

Ugh. vuvuzela.

After 12 minutes England’s troubles multiply. Thomas Müller steps in behind the England defense with all the structural integrity of the sand castle and squares in favor of Lukas Podolski. However, Podolski takes a poor first touch and finds himself too wide and at an angle too narrow to shoot. Shooting, David James makes a superstar leap over the ball – because naturally He does – and suddenly Germany is doing well. Ugh.

If you have any hope of England getting back into the game at this point, thanks to you. I long for your constant sense of optimism. I am very busy here.

Lampard has a chance but he doesn’t connect properly with Stunning (I repeat, Amazing) James Milner delivers from the right and Neuer saves from close range. Miraculously, the goal comes. England run a short corner back for Steven Gerrard who whips in a sensational cross. Epson rises. Wake up, my God, son. starfish noir. 2-1. game started? Did you start the game? Is the game running now?

Less than a minute later we had our answer. He. She I was The game has started. Or at least it should have been. England made it 2-2 back in the blink of an eye and had all the momentum.

Jermain Defoe tries to move towards the German goal but is sent off by a challenging rush from Arne Friedrich. The loose ball bounces, hitting the onrushing Lampard who, in turn, slams it onto Neuer from the edge of the penalty area. He hits the bar and down, backwards, behind the line, before rising up and reversing safely into Neuer’s hands.

She crossed the line. It’s a way to cross the line. It’s so far out of line, it might as well be in Lesotho if you look back in line and think “how the hell did I get here, in Lesotho, the country so completely landlocked as an enclave within South Africa’s borders?”.

not given. The target is not given. Something that should be considered a goal is actually the opposite of that; not a target. A goal that is an unmistakably key goal is not given as a goal, and Podolski steps up to the other end to launch a 100mph fastball off the post.

After eight years in Russia, we will benefit from hawk-eye technology, goal-line technology and the ever-polarizing VAR technology. But at this point, all we can do is grab the sticks. And by “grab a pitchfork” I mean “boo and swear really loudly on TV,” as in the lore of our culture.

Wayne Rooney protests with assistant referee Mauricio Espinosa

Wayne Rooney protests with assistant referee Mauricio Espinosa / Clive Mason / Getty Images

England exited the second half with Steven Gerrard protesting to the referee. Maybe it’s not even about the goal, but about asking the unfortunate Italian to play on the left wing. On commentary, Mark Lawrenson urges the team not to bring anger back onto the field, as it will lead to “bad decisions.”

This is probably the first and only time Mark Lawrenson has been right about anything.

Lampard hits a knuckle free kick off the crossbar from a ridiculous distance. England are on top, but both teams struggle to create chances that are not hopeful from wide. And then… uh.

He then hit another ambitious free kick, this time directly into the wall and Gareth Barry missed the rebound on the edge of the German penalty area. break Germany. England only have Ashley Cole left, but Lampard and one Glen Johnson make up the ground. Germany works in one direction and then backs the other to free Muller in the box, but again wide and with a weak shooting angle. shoots regardless.

James’ positioning is fantastic and with Lampard shut down, Muller has no way of scoring. Müller, who may or may not be related to James, is a professional goalkeeper recorded, closing his eyes and flapping his hands at the shot — hitting it straight — as if trying to deflect a water balloon off his face but terrified of getting the consequent drizzle in his eyes.

They think it’s over. that it. He. She Of course he is. But it’s special now. Three minutes later, Ozil chasing down a clap down the left with no England players other than Cole and Parry returning, quickly closes in. Except that Barry doesn’t shut down quickly at all, and instead moves so slowly that he’s probably running backwards. With an anchor tied around his waist. on the moon.

Ozil runs into the box, boxes through Cole’s legs and Mueller is there to shoot into the ceiling of the net. 4-1.

Had Lampard’s goal been allowed, though… had it been properly achieved… had justice been done in England’s favor just once, but… and we might have lasted long enough to go out in a blaze of penalty shoot-out glory.

So just keep that in mind please, Germany and everyone else has memories of us being terrible in 2010 world Cup. We made it 2-2 at one point, and we’re going to take it.



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