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It's Been 50 Years Since The Free-Kick So Genius It Was Banned Immediately

It's Been 50 Years Since The Free-Kick So Genius It Was Banned Immediately

It won BBC Goal of the Year, but the incredible 'donkey kick' free-kick routine was banned at the end of the season.

Everton were the team on the receiving end when Coventry City, top-flight regulars back in October 1970, unleashed this unique trick. It was a pre-planned move played to perfection.

As the wall lined up, Coventry's Willie Carr - innocently standing over the ball - suddenly gripped the ball between his heels and flicked it into the air. Striker Ernie Hunt swung back a boot and absolutely smashed a volley right into the net. Sublime.

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"An original piece of football impudence," acclaimed John Motson on Match of the Day. Everton were certainly caught completely unawares by the routine, as they waited for a traditional dead-ball strike.

However football authorities banned the so-called 'donkey-kick' as a means of taking a free-kick at the end of the season. So this goal is one we're unlikely to see Harry Kane and Son Heung-min pull off in 2020, while Jose Mourinho gives it large on the touchline.

Coventry went on to win the match 3-1, with Hunt (who died in 2018) netting a brace. Yet we'd never see another goal like this again.

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The closest we'll probably see in the Premier League era is something like Matt Le Tissier's flick-up free-kick, which also resulted in a volleyed finish but with Le Tiss providing the set-up himself.

No, it looks like Carr and Hunt's routine will go unmatched, unless the FA or FIFA relax the rules on the 'donkey-kick'. Might be an idea just so we can all stop talking about the handball law for 15 minutes.

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Features image credit: YouTube/BBC

Topics: Football News, Football, Goals, Free-kick, Premier League

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Alex Reid

Alex Reid is a writer at SPORTbible who’s previously strung words together for FourFourTwo, Boxing News, The Guardian and, yes, Cruise International (it’s about big ships, not Tom). Interests range from football and boxing to real sports like WWE and darts. He is not a cage fighter.