Goals that win games live long in the memory

7th February 2015

When Gylfi Sigurdson smashed home the opener against Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park, little did he realise he would be joining a club for which players would happily rip up their membership cards.
There is no doubt that Gylfi scored the goal of the game in the FA Cup tie. His stunning strike from outside the box was head and shoulders above any other scored in the game.
Unfortunately his effort was the only Swans goal out of a total of four scored during the game, which obviously meant he ended up on the losing side.
So Gylfi became one of those players who scored the best goal of the game but also ended up on the losing side.
No matter how good his goal was, it is unlikely to find a place in fans' memories alongside his free-kicks which lit up victories against Aston Villa and Arsenal, or even the less spectacular winner against Manchester United, for example.
And although it was a similar strike to Jonjo Shelvey's spectacular winner at St Mary's last Sunday, I think I know which one is going to live longest in most Swans fans' memories.
Unfair? Yes. Untrue? Probably not. 
Think about it, how many consolation goals, or any goals from teams on the losing side, are indelibly burned on our memories as truly great goals.
Technically, Gylfi's goal was of no less quality than either of his goals against Wigan back in 2012. But those goals back in the Swans' first Premier League campaign will be remembered longer and more fondly because they were scored in a victory.
It really should not have any bearing when deciding the technical quality of one goal over another, but whether a goal is scored in a victory or not certainly seems to have a bearing on where it ranks in people's memories and when the awards are handed out.
How many Goal of the Season winners have been consolation goals? The answer is very few, and the ones that did win, don't always spring to mind. 
Think of your ten favourite Swans goals ever. How many of them were scored in defeats? And if there are any in your list of ten, how many of them feature in your top five?
Would they really compete with Curt's cracker against Leeds, Bodde's blockbuster against Preston, or Trundle's terrific lob against Yeovil?
And what about James' Thomas unforgettable chip in the do or die win over Hull back in 2003? Would any goals scored in Swans' defeats compete with that history-making match clincher?
How many of you would pick Rory Fallon's brilliant overhead kick in the League One play-off final defeat against Barnsley at the Millennium Stadium back in 2006.
I bet it doesn't have the same kind of appeal as Lee Trundle's fantastic goal at the same venue in the 2-1 Football League Trophy final victory against Carlisle just a few weeks before.
Talking of spectacular overhead kicks being scored in defeat. Remember Gheorghe Grozav's cracker for Petrolul against the Swans in the Europa League? Unfortunately for the visitors to the Liberty, it was their only goal in six! It did get a round of applause from the home fans though.
I don't normally like showing too much appreciation to opposition goals against the Swans, but it was a cracker and we won 5-1!
Pity the players who rarely get on the scoresheet, and when they do score a "worldy", it comes in a defeat.
Poor old Robbie Savage was much maligned as a footballer. Most people remember him as an earnest scuffler who put himself about a bit and had a lot to say for himself.
Very few remember the brilliant first-time volley he scored for Wales from 25 yards in a World Cup qualifier against Turkey back in 1997.
Perhaps it wasn't quite up there with Mark Hughes' wonder strike against Spain in 1985, but it wasn't far off.
The biggest problem with Robbie's goal, and the reason it has been largely forgotten, was that it came in an embarrassing 6-4 defeat.
Hughes built himself a reputation as not being a great goalscorer, but the scorer of great goals - many of which were volleys struck in famous victories like the 3-0 win against Spain at the Racecourse.
But one of his most acrobatic and spectacular volleys is often forgotten because it came for Manchester United in a 5-1 defeat at the hands of rivals Manchester City in 1989. Not an occasion the red half of Manchester would recall with relish.
Hughes and Savage's Wales team-mate Ian Rush seldom had the problem of seeing one of his goals forgotten because it was scored during a defeat - especially in the red shirt of Liverpool.
Liverpool simply did not lose when Rush scored, or that's how it was in the first 145 games of his Anfield career. The remarkable run lasted seven years until the Reds finally went down 2-1 in the League Cup final against Arsenal when Rush netted the consolation goal.
Another cup final goal, which is often forgotten, came in the 1981 FA Cup Final between Spurs and Manchester City.
Now this goal was doubly unlucky because it happened to be scored in the same match as Ricky Villa's magnificent dribble and strike, and it's scorer ended up on the losing side.
But many people feel that Steve McKenzie's vicious volley from the edge of the penalty area was better than Villa's much trumpeted strike.
In truth, it's almost impossible to choose between the two goals because they are so different. One a tippy-toed run through the middle of a defence, rounded off with slightly fortuitous finish, the other an unstoppably powerful and accurate volley from 20 yards.
However, Villa's is the goal that has gone down in history and is often touted as the greatest ever cup final goal.
So, you can see, Gylfi and his goal against Blackburn are certainly in good company, and he would definitely have preferred to see it contribute to a win rather than being a statistic in defeat.
But as long as he keeps banging goals like that one in, I'm sure we're going to be happy more often than not when the Iceman Cometh.
Come on you Swans!