Goals of the Week: O Solo Mio edition

Jamie McDonald

Teammates? Who needs them? This week's selection is all about the art of the solo run.

5. Stefan Reisinger - FORTUNA DUSSELDORF vs. Hamburg

A good run, this, but also features my favourite kind of finish - hit over the goalkeeper but too hard to be classed as a lob. Turkey's winner against the Czech Republic in Euro 2008 was the archetypal example, but as far as I'm aware, there's no name for it. Suggestions in the comments, please.

4. Philippe Mexes - Anderlecht vs. AC MILAN

This isn't a solo goal as such. It is, however, an overhead kick from outside the area, and in a tight game that meant something where the keeper was on his line, thank you very much, Mr. Ibrahimovic. So it might not fit the theme, but if you have to ask why we've included it, this probably isn't the sport for you.

3. Servet Cetin - ESKISEHIRSPOR vs. Trabzonspor

The defining characteristic of the solo run is not the dribbling, not the absence of team play, not the quality of the individual, but whether it can reduce the commentator to orgasmic and repetitive screaming of your name, ever heightening in pitch until he runs out of places to go and collapses in a heap of gasps and delirium. This certainly did that.

2. Jakub Kosecki - LEGIA WARSAW vs. Widzew Lodz

A stunning run, and probably a slightly fortunate finish, but with a build-up like that, the ball always goes in - just ask Ryan Giggs. The keeper just leaps out of the way in pure respect for the run that preceded it. Also note the fact that the commentator appears to not know the names of any of the players, or is perhaps confused as to what is going on entirely. And on more important matters, though, is the Ekstraklasa the most attractive league in the world? Look at all the teammates that run over to celebrate this one. Good grief.

1. Jermain Defoe - TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR vs. West Ham United

If we may get all philosophical for a second - what is a solo run? Can any goal truly be judged as a solo goal if the virtuoso is dependent on teammates pulling other players away with their runs? Football is about manipulating space, but since one player cannot do that alone, how are we to expect them to score solo goals? Is the space manipulated a striated or a smooth space? Well, you might say, what do most solo goals actually consist of? They consist of a player running towards the goal, ignoring any passes that might be on, and hitting it as hard as possible at the goal. Remind you of anyone? Yes, it's Jermain Defoe's entire career, and here's one of his best from this weekend's game against West Ham.

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