Matty Burrows: Could I score a goal like that again? Of course ...
Glentoran hot-shot Matty Burrows has warned Portadown defenders that he can replicate the wonderful back-heeled volley he struck against them at the Oval last month.
The amazing strike — which turned the 25-year-old into a worldwide Internet sensation and has since seen him go up against the likes of Lionel Messi and Arjen Robben for FIFA's Ballon D'or Puskas Award for best goal in the world this year — settled a drab encounter in the 92nd minute of the Carling Premiership clash in October.
Since then, Burrows' name has been on everyone's lips, the talk of world football with some four million hits on YouTube are testament to that and there is now a genuine chance that he will be in Zurich in January among the global game's leading lights to pick up that most coveted of prizes.
However, before all that there is the small matter of three important points to be won when the Glens head to Shamrock Park tomorrow hoping to bounce back from defeat to Dungannon Swifts last Saturday.
Burrows was dropped for that game, manager Scott Young citing the his apparent poor performance against Coleraine the previous Tuesday as the sole reason, but the striker is hoping to reclaim his place and says that, given half a chance, he can score another cracker against the Ports and keep Glentoran in touch with Carling Premiership leaders Linfield.
“I'll always try those sorts of things and I know that I am capable of doing it again if the ball falls right for me,” he said.
“People kept saying to me after I scored it, 'did you mean it?' Of course I meant it, what else would I be trying to do?
“I only had one intention and that was to score. Obviously you need a bit of luck as well to go in your favour and the ball came to me perfectly. The height and the weight of the ball was just right and I went for it. If that happened again I would try it again.
“I gave it another go in the next game against Glenavon — it was a bit closer in and from a corner and it hit the top of the bar. That shows that I am prepared to try things and hopefully they pay off.
“I'd love to do it again against Portadown, but then again, I'd take any goal no matter what it's like.”
The hype surrounding THAT goal intensified this week when it was learned who Burrows would be up against in the fight for the Puskas Award and he is hoping the Northern Ireland public log on to the FIFA website to vote for his strike.
“I've seen the other goals and there are some crackers in there, but hopefully everyone can help me and I suppose Irish League football by voting for me,” he said.
“It's still a bit surreal to be mentioned among some of the best players in the world, but a lot of people have been saying to me that I have a good chance. It all depends on people voting, so hopefully they will.”
The Bangor-man admits he was disappointed at losing his place for last week's loss to the Swifts and is hoping to gain a reprieve for tomorrow's trip to mid-Ulster.
“Yes, it was a bit of a surprise and it was disappointing not to be starting,” he said. “I know I didn't
play well against Coleraine and I'll admit that, but I was in good form up to that and had scored something like seven goals in eight games. But it was the manager's decision and I just have to respect that. All I can do is hope that I get my place back and then do all I can when I am on the pitch to make it harder for Scott (Young) to leave me out again.”
You can vote for Matty Burrows' goal by going to: www.fifa.com/ballondor/puskasaward
... oh no you couldn’t, says keeper beaten by Burrows
The last time David Miskelly faced Glentoran, he found himself picking the ball out of the net after that stunning back-heeled volley from Matty Burrows.
But the Portadown goalkeeper is not expecting a repeat performance when the sides meet again tomorrow at Shamrock Park.
Miskelly, while not wanting to dilute any praise that has come Burrows' way, says that it was a once in a lifetime goal and there's no way the Glens striker would be able to pull off such an amazing feat again.
“It was a real sucker punch for us; that goal. He deserves all the limelight he gets, but he'll probably never be able to do it again,” said Miskelly.
“It's one of those ones that just fell for him and if he tried it 1000 times more he probably wouldn’t be able to do it again.
“I don't think we'll have to worry about being caught by something like that on Saturday.
“Being the ‘keeper on the night, it didn't really dawn on me the type of goal that it was, I was more disappointed that we had conceded so late in a game that no team really deserved to win.
“That would have been a big point for us with the way things had been going and we were bitterly disappointed that we ended up losing because both teams had played poorly and a draw would have been a fair result.
“Then they just hit us right at the end with that goal. Fair play to Matty though, it's something he won't manage again and I genuinely hope he picks up all the wards he can get for it.”
That defeat was in the middle of a horrible run of results for the mid-Ulster men which sucked them into a relegation dogfight at the bottom of the table.
However, last week's 3-0 victory over basement side Donegal Celtic finally brought some cheer to the Ports and Miskelly is hopeful that they can build on that.
“That was our best performance in a long time,” he added. “It's been a difficult season and no one expected us to be sitting where we are in the league table.
“This was supposed to be a season where we were challenging at the top end so it's been very disappointing, but hopefully we have turned a corner and we can start moving up the table again.
“We now have to start looking up and I think with the way the league is, with everyone taking points off everyone else, we have to be targeting a top six place now.”