On This Day In 2010: Siphiwe Tshabalala Shocked The World With Goal Against Mexico
The opening World Cup game between Russia and Saudi Arabia is just three days away, so we thought we'd get in the mood by endlessly watching one of the greatest World Cup opening goals in recent memory.
In fact, this goal was exactly eight years ago to the day.
South Africa hosted Mexico in an enthralling encounter in Johannesburg and the 80,000 capacity stadium nearly erupted when Siphiwe Tshabalala opened the scoring ten minutes into the second half.
On this day :date::- ITV Football (@itvfootball) June 11, 2018
In 2010 @siphiweshabba scored a screamer for South Africa to open the @FIFAWorldCup in style :rocket::soccer::flag_za:
Watch all the action from 2018 on @ITV pic.twitter.com/OLGCkEeFuC
Teko Modise played a one-two with a teammate in midfield and upon receiving the ball just inside the Mexico half, sprayed a defence-splitting ball through to the galloping Tshabalala down the left.
There was no way Mexico were catching the Kaiser Chiefs speedster and after arriving in the box, Tshabalala smashed the ball into the far corner with his sweet left foot, leaving Oscar Perez with absolutely no chance.
The scenes were just incredible - with Peter Drury, the man to capture special moments, capturing it beautifully.
"GOAL BAFANA BAFANA! GOAL FOR SOUTH AFRICA! GOAL FOR ALL OF AFRICA. REJOICE!" - was Drury's memorable line, just as the South African players lined up and started throwing some serious shapes.
Mexico would go on to equalise in the 79th minute through Rafael Marquez that didn't put a dampener on what was an moment of ecstasy and euphoria for a country littered with such racial segregation and apartheid for a while.
As far as opening goals go, you'll struggle to find when better in terms of the quality of the striker and what it meant. We can only hope something half as good comes from Russia-Saudi Arabia next week...