To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Not now

20 Years Ago Gianfranco Zola Scored One Of The All Time Great FA Cup Goals

Ryan Sidle

| Last updated 

20 Years Ago Gianfranco Zola Scored One Of The All Time Great FA Cup Goals

Gianfranco Zola's incredible back heeled goal for Chelsea, against Norwich, was scored 20 years ago today, and it's still an all time great.


Zola was on the first truly special foreign players to move to the Premier League, when he signed for Chelsea for £4.5 million in December 1996.

The Italian came with a big reputation after his time with Napoli and Parma, winning Serie A alongside Diego Maradona with the former, and the UEFA Cup with the latter.

At Chelsea, the forward enjoyed many brilliant moments and won quite the haul of silverware for a Blues side who weren't the super power they'd become under Roman Abramovich.

In 2002, later on his time at Stamford Bridge, the little Italian proved just how brilliant he could be, with a moment of pure genius in the FA Cup, in a third round replay against Norwich City.

At the time Norwich were a Championship side, the league was still known as the First Division at the time, but managed to hold their Premier League opposition in the first game.

Despite a strong team for the Blues at Carrow Road, that included Zola, Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, Marcel Desailly and William Gallas, the west Londoners were held to a 0-0 draw.

However when they got the Canaries back to the capital nine days later, the home side showed their quality, with Zola's goal the pick of the bunch.

Mario Stanic opened the scoring for the hosts, before Frank Lampard doubled the lead just after the half time interval, before the Zola's moment of pure class made it 3-0. Mikael Forssell wrapped things up in the final minute of normal time.

Zola and his teammates celebrate his goal. Image: PA Images
Zola and his teammates celebrate his goal. Image: PA Images

Zola's genius can still be seen in some Premier League records today, but one player equalled one of his landmarks from his time in England on Saturday.

The 55-year-old, who has managed in England with West Ham, Birmingham City and Watford, is still the joint second top free kick scorer in the Premier League's history.

Southampton captain James Ward-Prowse joined the Italian, and Thierry Henry, on 12 goals from the set piece, with only David Beckham's 18 ahead of the trio of men.

Featured Image Credit: Chelsea TV/PA

Topics: Chelsea, Premier League, FA Cup, Norwich City

Ryan Sidle
More like this

Chosen for YouChosen for You


Ring doorbell captures UFC star Paddy 'The Baddy' Pimblett apologising for his dog taking 'sloppy s***'

3 hours ago

Most Read StoriesMost Read

Argentina's assistant manager was reduced to tears after Lionel Messi's goal against Mexico

4 hours ago