“Has a goalkeeper ever received a red card for time-wasting?” wonders Bogdan Kotarlic.
Adi Zakamowicz wastes no times in answering this one. “Yes, it happened pretty recently. In this season’s edition of Israel’s Toto Cup (our version of the Carabao Cup), in a match against Hapoel Hadera on 21 August 2021, goalkeeper Danny Amos of Maccabi Netanya was given a second yellow card for time-wasting in the 92nd minute, after he received a first yellow for time-wasting in the 85th minute. Therefore, a red card was shown to Amos, and full-back Karem Jaber replaced him in goal for the last minutes of added time, keeping the score at 2-0 in favour of Maccabi Netanya.”
Another goalkeeper who received his marching orders for running down the clock was Iván Cuéllar while at Leganés. Daniel Bickermann writes: “In 2020 Cuéllar received his second yellow and thus a red card in the 93rd minute of their 0-0 draw with Atlético Madrid. Since Leganés had already used up all their substitutes, left-back Jonathan Silva put on the green jersey for the remaining seconds.” And if we go off-piste somewhat, Daniel adds: “Schalke manager David Wagner got a very controversial straight red in extra-time for time-wasting during a cup game against Hertha Berlin, when he seemingly helped up Hertha’s Jordan Torunarigha after he crashed into the Schalke bench. After a VAR review, the referee gave Wagner a red card and explained he was preventing a fast continuation of play.”
We have plucked out a couple of examples involving fun and games in South America. There was controversy on 4 January 1977 when the Uruguayan referee Héctor Rodriguez sent off Ecuador’s goalkeeper Carlos Delgado for time-wasting five minutes into the second half against … Uruguay, who were trailing 1-0 in a friendly. Uruguay equalised soon after before Rodriguez went card-crazy, sending off another three Ecuador players in the 78th minute as they made clear their grievance before the match was abandoned amid a melee.
And there was chaos in an Ecuadorian top-flight match on 1 November 2014 when Barcelona’s keeper Máximo Banguera was given a second yellow for time-wasting as early as the 42nd minute. As the substitute goalkeeper Damian Lanza was waiting to replace him, he made baseless accusations against the referee which led to him being sent off before he had even come on. Cue a mass brawl which needed riot police. The match restarted and Barcelona’s nine men did well to lose only 2-1 as two outfield players took turns in goal for the remaining 48 minutes.
Marathon shootouts with no saves
“The Carabao Cup final featured 22 penalties in the shootout, of which 21 were scored and one was missed,” notes Athena Blight. “Has there ever been a longer shootout where not a single penalty was saved?”
“On 4 February 2006, the Africa Cup of Nations quarter-final between Cameroon and Ivory Coast went to penalties,” writes Chris Fowler. “Even the goalkeepers scored, before one of the first penalties of the second time around was missed. So the sequence was 22 scored, one missed or 23 penalties without, as far as I can remember, anyone missing.” We’ve looked into this and discovered that Samuel Eto’o was the Cameroon player who shanked the 23rd penalty over, allowing Didier Drogba to fire home the winning spot-kick.
But David Cartwright believes the record for the number of consecutive shoot-our penalties scored before one was missed took place in the Hampshire Senior Cup. “It is thought that 29 were taken in a game between between Brockenhurst and Andover Town on 9 October 2013. Brockenhurst won 15-14.” We have video of the shootout, in which Andover’s Claudio Herbert saw his kick – the 30th – saved. Although this may be a record, there was a save eventually, so the example from above better answers Athena’s question.
Scoring at both ends in double-quick time
“I make it about three minutes and 40 seconds between Sébastien Haller’s own goal and his goal against Benfica,” tweets Nayson. “What’s the smallest gap between a player scoring at both ends of the pitch?”
There are many members of the “scored at both ends” club but finding a player who has done it quicker than the Ajax striker did is tricky. Robert Davies wrote in with a player who matched Haller’s three minutes, but we can’t confirm whether he was faster or slower. Either way, it was an eventful match for Walsall’s Conor Wilkinson in the 3-3 draw with Newport on 1 January this year. Here’s the rundown:
52 min: Came on as sub
53 min: Scored with first touch
56 min: Scored own goal
90+5min: Scored equaliser
We also remember Troy Deeney going from hero to villain within three minutes when he equalised for Watford against Manchester United in the 87th minute in November 2015, before putting through his own net in the 90th. And a doff of the cap to Tammy Abraham, who scored a hat-trick for Chelsea before adding an own goal 14 minutes later during their 5-2 win over Wolves in 2019.
What’s the largest away following?
“Your article from 6 February 2013 asked about the biggest away following at a football ground,” writes Ross Taylor …
“I would like to offer Truro City v Torquay United in the Conference South from 2019. Truro were groundsharing at Torquay’s Plainmoor, resulting in a mere 200-mile round trip for home games. As a result, they were averaging fewer than 200 at home, with a low of 86 against Hemel Hempstead in October 2018. When they met on New Year’s Day 2019 at Plainmoor for Truro’s designated home match, the crowd was 2,812, made up of 2,760 Torquay ‘away’ fans and 52 Truro ‘home’ fans, or 98.1% away fans.”
“Spurs v Pompey saw six players playing against their old club – Jermain Defoe, Peter Crouch and Niko Kranjcar for Spurs, plus Michael Brown, Younes Kaboul and Kevin-Prince Boateng for Pompey,” noted Eliot Crowe in October 2009. “Is this a record?”
We headed to the League of Ireland for the answer. “Having almost gone bust in 2008 Drogheda United ended up throwing together a cheap squad for the 2009 season,” wrote Sean DeLoughrey. “They signed no fewer than seven of the squad players released by promotion-winning local rivals Dundalk. Drogheda already had two ex-Dundalk players. When the Louth rivals met Drogheda started with six ex-Dundalk players (Steve Williams, Robbie Clarke, Jamie Duffy, Paul Shiels, David O’Connor, Robbie Martin) and two further ex-Dundalk players (Ian Ryan and Robbie Farrell) came off the bench. Dundalk featured former Drogheda player Declan O’Brien for a total of nine players playing against their former team. Dundalk won 3-0.”
Can you help?
“When was the last time a manager in the English top flight was relegated and then kept their job until they brought the same club back up?” wonders Anthony McGlennon.
“A lot of questions go unanswered,” begins Eugene Francis. “I feel this will be one: has a goalkeeper ever taken a corner?”
“Given that the player of the match is usually announced around the 89th minute, what is the worst-ever performance of one after the announcement has been made,” wonders Andrew Chambers.