World Football: 20 Jaw-Dropping Overhead Kicks
Overhead kicks are the stuff of playground dreams. They're the ultimate statement of spectacular brilliance on the football field, and only the most gifted are equipped to execute them.
The skills involved are multiple. Not only do you need exquisite timing, perfect technique and a sixth sense for where the goal is; you need to be brave. You need to trust your body to take you from horizontal to a soft landing.
It's hard enough done in your own back yard; let alone on football's biggest stage. But these players pulled it off. They pulled it off with style.
Here are 20 jaw-dropping overhead kicks.
1. Mauro Bressan
In November 1999, Mauro Bressan scored one of the most ridiculous goals ever captured on film.
Check out this effort from OUTSIDE THE BOX for Fiorentina against Barcelona, in the Champions League group stages.
2. Brian Howard
But for Brian Howard, the 2006 clash between Barnsley and Cardiff City would have been forgotten years ago.
Howard's golazo ensures the game is revisited every time a football writer puts together a slideshow like this one.
Ronaldinho has had his critics over the years, but the next time you're bemoaning his work ethic, just remember he can do things like this.
Now that is a beautiful goal.
4. Marco Van Basten
Legendary Dutch striker Marco van Basten scored more than his share of brilliant goals in a glittering career.
Here's a superb over-the-shoulder volley he scored for Ajax against Den Bosch.
5. Trevor Sinclair
Trevor Sinclair played in a World Cup quarter-final for England against Brazil in 2002, but he's arguably best known for this stupendous goal in 1997.
The winger was playing for QPR against Barnsley in the FA Cup.
6. Zlatan Ibrahimovic
This one is all about the set up. Zlatan Ibrahimovic coaxes the ball into position with such artistry that the overhead kick finish seems a straightforward conclusion.
Ibra was playing for Milan against Fiorentina when he cast this footballing spell.
7. Eliran Atar
Eliran Atar was playing for Israeli team Bnei Yehuda when he scored this incredible goal in 2009.
It was duly nominated for the Ferenc Puskas award and finished fourth.
8. Eren Derdiyok
Bayer Leverkusen's Eren Derdiyok entered the pantheon of overhead kick legends with this cracker against Wolfsburg.
The Swiss international will be dining out on this one long after he's hung up his boots.
9. Marcelo Balboa
It's not hard to see why Marcelo Balboa's effort for the Colorado Rapids against the Columbus Crew was named MLS Goal of the Year for 2000.
10. Hugo Sanchez
Mexican international Hugo Sanchez was something of an overhead-kick specialist, as this clip demonstrates.
His most celebrated success at the art form came with this effort in the colours of Real Madrid, against Athletic Bilbao.
Brazilian playmaker Rivaldo is still playing at the grand old age of 39, but it's been a decade since his star shone brightest at Barcelona.
Here he is scoring a beauty for Barca against Valencia. It's almost good enough to wipe this moment from your memory. But not quite.
12. Rory Fallon
Rory Fallon is plying his trade for Aberdeen in the SPL now, but back in the 2002-03 season, he was putting in a shift for Swindon Town.
Here's a beauty the New Zealand international scored against southwest rivals Bristol City.
13. Klaas-Jan Huntelaar
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar is another player who seems to find overhead kicks easy. Check out this compilation as evidence.
Here's one the in-form Dutchman scored for Ajax against Willem II.
Deco plays in Brazil these days, and he has retired from international duties with Portugal.
Here's the midfielder during his time at Chelsea, scoring a lovely overhead kick against Bolton in the Premier League.
15. Rodrigo Taddei
Roma's Rodrigo Taddei averages roughly a goal every nine games, but when he does score, he likes to leave a lasting impression.
This one came against Cagliari, back in 2006. He would later score this one against Juventus.
16. Wayne Rooney
Manchester United fans won't forget this one in a hurry. With their side level at 1-1 against local rivals City, and just over 10 minutes on the clock, Wayne Rooney produced a quite stunning finish to win the game.
Rooney's golazo has been shortlisted for the 2011 Ferenc Puskas award.
17. Eugene Dadi
How's about this one for going global?
Veteran striker Eugene Dadi was making his debut for A-League side Wellington Phoenix when he scored this cracker against Brisbane Roar in Australia.
18. Wesley Sonck
Wesley Sonck's overhead kick for Lierse has been viewed over a million times on YouTube—and it's hardly surprising when you see how ridiculous it is.
The Belgium international is certainly the only player in this slideshow to brave snow and ice on his descent.
19. Manuel Negrete
Let me take you back to the mid-'80s. Manuel Negrete was playing for Mexican side UNAM Pumas against Puebla, when he scored one of the best goals you're ever likely to see.
He also scored this cracker for the Mexican national team at their home World Cup in 1986—set up by Javier Aguirre, now coach of Real Zaragoza (props to B/R's Enrique Estrada for the info on that one).
20. Luis Tejada
Excuse the silence on this clip, but the quality of Luis Tejada's goal should make up for it.
The Panama international produced this one against Mexico in qualifying for the 2006 World Cup.