Writer’s Note: I wrote up Martin Skrtel’s sensational header against Manchester City last weekend because it was badass. I’m now writing up Robin van Persie’s against Southampton because it was equally badass. This could very well turn into a weekly column since headers (when done correctly) are a. badass and b. completely underrated goal-scoring opportunities. Henceforth, I will take suggestions for “Header of the Week” to feature after every week of EPL and international soccer action. Tweet’em at me @Ryan_M_Joseph.
Robin van Perise–this f*cking guy. After several years plying his craft (and injuries) at Arsenal, he took his goal-poaching talents north to hated rivals Manchester United. Quite the LeBron-esque departure for sure, but the kid’s doing just like Norbel and making an immediate impact for the hated giants of English soccer. Case in point, he ran rough-shed over newly promoted Southampton today, gifting Sir Alex and the Reds a hat trick, which included this cheeky header in stoppage time (goal is shown at the 1:29 mark).
Let’s pause and break down how difficult this re-direction was. First, consider the circumstances: United had just equalized through RVP, effectively giving United a tie they didn’t deserve. They didn’t need a goal so much as a final whistle and a train out of the south of England. Second, look at the angle he took. He was unmarked, but his acute angle makes any attempt an almost pinpoint impossibility. That he could take Patrice Evra’s cross, flick it over Southampton’s Kelvin Davis and into the far post is remarkable. His tally is goal-scoring prowess on a hundred-thousand-trillion–or something. Third, that goal secured three points that United had no right hoarding. To quote Aziz Ansari, that goal was “dope.”
Oh, and the asshole could’ve had four today had he converted his penalty. Give him some hate, guys! Because RVP could give a f*ck.