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22 Years Ago Today Roberto Carlos Scored The Most Incredible Free-Kick

22 Years Ago Today Roberto Carlos Scored The Most Incredible Free-Kick

Over two decades ago Roberto Carlos stepped up and scored one of the most incredible free kicks that anyone's ever seen, and we haven't been able to stop watching it since.

There's very little more beautiful in football than seeing someone score a long range free kick. There's an immense build up, the pageantry of the run up and then the dramatic pause as the ball heads towards the goal.

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David Beckham's late equaliser for England against Greece in the final World Cup qualifier back in 2001 might be the perfect example of everything that's brilliant about a free kick goal.

As the former Manchester United winger walked back from the ball to take the set piece you could hear a whole nation draw breath.

However as good as Beckham's free kick was it's nothing on the most incredible free kick in living memory, Roberto Carlos' effort in the summer of 1997 against France in Le Tournoi, exactly 22 years ago today.

It might be more than two decades old but it won't stop us watching this for the rest of the day, ooooh that swazz will do funny things to a man:

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The goal came in the opening match of the much forgotten Le Tournoi, or Tournoi de France, which was a four team tournament in France as a warm up for the World Cup in the country a year later, before the FIFA Confederations Cup was used for that purpose.

Hosts France played reigning world champions Brazil in the opener, and the pair would meet again a year later, Carlos' incredible strike was the opening goal of the tournament, someway to start things.

French midfielder Marc Keller scored an equaliser in the game and it finished 1-1. Imagine having the Gaul, pun intended, to actually score after that piece of brilliance. It's a tap in from a yard out after Fabien Barthez' save falls to Keller.

England players celebrate with their 'silverware.' Image: PA Images
England players celebrate with their 'silverware.' Image: PA Images

England would go on to win Le Tournoi after beating Italy and France, before losing to Brazil, and that's their most recent tournament victory.

22 years on and the Three Lions finally have a decent chance to add to their trophy cabinet in the UEFA Nations League.

Gareth Southgate, who played in Le Tournoi, and his team face Netherlands in the semi-final on Thursday and a win would put them in Sunday's final against either Switzerland or hosts Portugal.

No matter how much practicing free kicks happens it's unlikely anyone will recreate anything close to Carlos' bit of magic in this summer's mini tournament.

Topics: Football News, Brazilian football, World Football, South American football, International Football, England, World Cup, Roberto Carlos, France, Brazil, Real Madrid

Ryan Sidle

Ryan is a writer for SPORTbible. He covers all sport from football, formula one, cricket, rugby, tennis, athletics, mma and wrestling. He obviously hates YOUR football team and has no interest in synchronised swimming.

 

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