Thursday, October 06, 2005

The greatest save ever

(Video clip below) In 1966 England had won the World Cup and were back in 1970 to defend their crown in Mexico. In the second match of the group staged they faced Brazil in one of the finest football matches in history, a match which included, what I think, was the greatest save in history by former Leicester City and Stoke City goalkeeper Gordon Banks.

The moment occurred when Brazilian captain Carlos Alberto played right winger Jairzinho thru on the wing. The playmaker dribbled to the byline to lay in a perfect cross across the goalkeeper to the far post straight into the path of a charging Pele who rose and headed the ball fiercely down into the corner.

It looked a certain goal. It was not to be.

Gordon Banks showed incredible agility to go all the way across goal and leap into a full stretch, twist, and tip the ball with his outstretched right hand straight up and over the bar. It was a truly incredible save. Banks was not even aware he saved the ball until he got up and saw the ball rolling away from goal.

It looked so certain a goal that, right after heading the ball, the greatest player in the world at the time, Pele, had already started to celebrate.

Pele was quoted as saying afterwards it was the greatest goal he’d never scored and also that it was the greatest save he'd ever seen.

A 59th minute goal from Jairzinho meant England ended up losing the game, but it was not because of Gordon Banks who created an indelible memory for generations to appreciate.



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Anonymous Anonymous said...

A save that will never be matched

10/06/2005 3:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would put Jerzy Dudek's double save against Andrei Shevchenko in the dying seconds of extra time of the UEFA Champions League final in Istanbul last May in the same category.Considering the circumstances, I consider it the most amazing save that I have ever seen - it was miraculous!

10/06/2005 6:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It was a crap header. Best Player Ever??? Pele should have done Better !!


10/14/2005 9:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Most over rated save in history.
No where near as good as Andy Goarams from Pierre Van Hooijdonks point blanl volley in an old firm match years ago.

11/28/2005 12:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am stunned that anyone can suggest that this was not the greatest save of all time. It was simply untrue how he scooped the ball over the bar. Its a perfect save.

2/08/2006 4:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Banksy made a brilliant save to deny the best player in the history of the game.....but for me Safe Hands pulled off the best save ever against Sheffield Utd in the FA Cup, clawing it out from the goal line, unbelievable.

3/15/2006 4:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Against Brazil....against Pele....in a World Cup match....taking everything into account.....THIS HAS TO BE THE GREATEST SAVE.
It still makes the hairs stand up on the back of my neck everytime i see it.
The crowds reaction.....Peles reaction and his comments after....Gordons team mates comments then and now....Nothing but admiration and respect....a player at the top of his game.
Look at the agility.....and its still being talked about almost 40 years later......CLASS.

5/09/2006 10:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i dont know anything about soccer other than i cant watch it for more than 5 minutes without falling asleep... but that was a pretty wicked save.

5/16/2006 7:07 AM  
Anonymous Seuub said...


7/04/2006 11:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Peter Schmeichel against Rapid Vienna in the Champions League, similar to Bank's except when the player headed it Schmikes was going the wrong way and had to readjust and push it over the bar from just off the floor. Sheer class

12/11/2006 10:15 PM  
Blogger Matthew said...

does banks not punch the ball down into the ground with the side of his hand, so that it bounces back up and over the bar?... i've seen this clip before in better quality and I seem to remember that's what happened.

6/05/2007 1:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sunderland v Leeds 1973 FA cup final, Jimmy Montgomery made the greatest save ever-Fact.

6/09/2007 8:58 AM  
Blogger Gordy said...

WAS,IS, ALWAYS be the best that we ever produced. People should take in account that this was a world cup match. Flimsy gloves, heavy ball, hard pitch and against the greatest football player in the world ever! 40 years ago... unbelievable BANKSY rocks.....

6/27/2010 8:52 AM  
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