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The Greatest Goal Celebrations In Irish Football Ever

The Greatest Goal Celebrations In Irish Football Ever
By Gavin Cooney

On our daily podcast The Racket today, we brought up the fact that today marks the 11th anniversary of John O'Shea's glorious chip against Arsenal.

We wagered that O' Shea's confounded celebration was among the best in Irish football history: 


O'Shea began his celebration by threatening to imitate Eric Cantona before faltering and simply looking bemused, which captured  perfectly the bewildering likelihood of O'Shea scoring a goal that good. 

Here are some other Irish goal celebrations which rival O'Shea's glorious reaction against Arsenal.

Ray Houghton for Ireland v Italy, 1994

Terry Phelan's supporting delight is worthy of a mention, but the exuberance of Houghton's forward roll and subsequent thrust skywards is fantastic, and a firm favourite of the editors of Reeling In The Years.



Roy Keane for Manchester United v Various

In the same way as O'Shea's celebration summed up the man, so did Keane's. Keane's standard goal celebration for Manchester United was efficienct and workmanlike. He would arrive into the box, slot the ball in the corner, jog towards the corner flag - perhaps raise an arm - and then turn briefly towards his teammates. The first couple of minutes of this video offer a couple of good examples:



Damien Duff for Ireland v Saudi Arabia, 2002

This is the only World Cup game in which Ireland have scored more than none goal, and (albeit helped by sonme dodgy goalkeeping) Duff consolidated it with this oriental bow in Yokohama.

A World Cup whose build up was dominated with news of Roy Keane's Saipan departure was burnished with the youthful exuberance of Duff and Robbie Keane, and this celebration enapsulated it perfectly.



Robbie Keane for Ireland v Germany, 2002

The game that preceded Ireland's unprecedented goal haul against Saudi Arabia saw Robbie Keane equalise in the last minute, and give us Keane's trademark celebration. While gymnastic judges may not furnish forth a perfect score, it did give us The Greatest Youtube Comment Of All Time, which is more than enough.



Robbie Brady for Ireland v Bosnia, 2015

This is less for the quality of the celebration than for the fact it alerted us to the fact that a goal had been scored through the blinding fog.


It has also given us a photo that looked more Bronte than Bosnia.


Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE

...and the worst: 


Stephen Ireland for Man City v Sunderland, 2007

Back in the one season when Ireland imposed his international exile and became one of Ireland's greatest midfielders during his absence, Ireland was playing well for Manchester City and celebrated a goal against Sunderland by dropping his shorts and revealing his 'Superman' embroidred underwear.

We cannot find a video online of this. All we can offer is this low-res screen grab which is arguably still too clear.

If you feel we have missed any, tweet @ballsdotie.

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