Brass (O.G) – Darlington vs Bury – 2006

28 01 2011

Josh Clarke blogs at The 39th Game and tweets @joshkclarke … and he’s gone for a very different choice of favourite goal!

Sometimes it all gets a bit too much. Among the endless debates about the financial ethics of the Premier League, the professional dilemmas of footballers on social media and the managerial merry-go-rounds, it’s sometimes very easy to lose sight of the fact that football is just a game. 

A game that has been distorted and taken so far beyond its fundamental concept (11 men trying to force a round ball into a sacred area defended by another 11 men – and vice versa), that it becomes almost exasperating.

Which is the beauty of this series. Waxing lyrical about our favourite goals not only strips down the political veneer that has encased critical discussion of the game, it also returns us to primal feelings of awe and respect from identifying with moments of human achievement.

We have all been mesmerised by feats of individual accomplishment, finesse and beauty in front of goal. Sometimes though, it is delightfully refreshing to remember that footballers are only human and are as fallible as the rest of us. Consequently, my favourite goal embraces the ridiculous, rather than the sublime.

My favourite goal wasn’t scored by a prodigious talent. It wasn’t struck from 40-yards out and as far I can tell, it had no swerve or dip and not one smidgeon of grace. It wasn’t even scored in the right end.

It’s a crying shame for Chris Brass that his unspectacular, yet solid career in the nether regions of English football will be forever remembered by arguably the most epic fail (ignoring Diana Ross) ever seen on a football pitch.

And it all started innocuously enough. When Darlington bizarrely hoofed a ball into the air whilst on the edge of the opposition box, Brass was on hand to clear things up. He was under no pressure and a comfy clearing of the lines, in between puffs on his cigar, seemed the natural thing to do.

When Brass turned his back to the ball, you can immediately sense something amiss. You can call it intuition, but that sinking feeling is probably just because the YouTube video is entitled ‘funniest own goal ever’. As Brass attempted an overhead clearance, it seems implausible that the stalwart in the heart of the Bury defence could balls up in as ridiculous a way as Roberto Carlos.

Though, in a moment of true slapstick gold, Brass infuriated teammates but endeared himself to fans the world over. His hooked clearance cannoned off his own face and beyond his desperately unaware goalkeeper.

There seems to be an inherent and dark comicality to own goals, no matter what their incarnation. Perhaps it’s something to do with the ironically bipolar outcome of chalking one up for the opposition while in fact attempting to deny them. Kind of like slipping on a banana skin on your way to Tesco, to specifically buy a hand of bananas.

Prolonging my self-indulgent comedy-based analogy a little further, Brass’ example functions like slipping on a banana skin but while also receiving a pie in the face at the same time. Apart from this pie puts your team one down and actually breaks your nose as well.

It’s easy enough to laugh at Chris Brass, but once the initial cringe moment of the own goal goes, the mind starts to fathom how difficult it would be to actually recreate that moment. Have you ever tried kicking a ball, against your own face, with enough force to be fully able to catch out a goalkeeper the calibre of Kasper Schmeichel? Let me know how you get on.

So, that was my favourite goal. It may not be of breathtaking beauty, delicate artistry or epic proportions. But at least it reminds us to sometimes not take football too seriously.

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28 01 2011
Tweets that mention Brass (O.G) – Darlington vs Bury – 2006 « GhostGoal -- Topsy.com

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Josh Clarke and Josh Clarke, ghostgoal. ghostgoal said: New Blog Post – My Favourite Goal – Chris Brass (O.G) – Darlington vs Bury – 2006 – by @joshkclarke …… http://tinyurl.com/4rmg2va […]

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