|Peter repeats wonder goal against Sun keeper
Peter repeats wonder goal against Sun keeper
HAVING A CHARITY BALL
FOR he’s a VOLLEY good fellow... and so is Peter Crouch’s boss Tony Pulis!
The pair have agreed to split The Sun’s donation following our Crouchie challenge between two charities they support.Between May 28 and June 1, Pulis will get on his bike with celebrity Stoke fan Nick Hancock to raise cash for the Donna Louise Children’s Hospice. The pair will be cycling from John O’Groats to Land’s End, leading two teams in a 24-hour non-stop relay as they attempt to raise £100,000 for the charity.Crouch pledged his cash to the Sadie Rose Clifford Appeal as he supports a little local girl’s fight against cancer.
IT’S already the goal of the season. The sweetest strike of Peter Crouch’s career.
One deft flick of his right foot knocked the ball into the air — then BOOM!
A stunning right-foot volley sent the ball hurtling high into the roof of the net past the despairing dive of a hapless goalie. Sound familiar? Don’t bet on it.
Because this was not Manchester City No 1 Joe Hart being beaten all ends up by his England team-mate at the Britannia.
This time I was the one clutching at air as Stoke’s ace striker lashed one of his venomous volleys past ME at their Clayton Wood training ground!
To prove it was no fluke — and with The Sun making charity donations to the Donna Louise Children’s Hospice and the Sadie Rose Clifford Appeal — the big man repeated his party trick FOUR more times.
I had no idea what I was letting myself in for when I threw down the gauntlet — or should that be goalie’s glove — to Stoke’s £10million striker.
An inspired soul on the sportsdesk suggested it would be a good idea to see if Crouch could really back up his claim that he produces the kind of volley which struck a dagger into Manchester City’s Hart every day in training!
My first blunder was accepting the assignment — my second was turning up.
My third was squeezing my ever-expanding frame into my country’s national kit — to add spice to the challenge. Not surprisingly, the sight of a 48-year-old short-ar*ed Sun reporter in full Scotland goalie’s kit didn’t seem to faze the England star, who has scored 22 goals in 42 Three Lions appearances.In fact I swear there was a glint in his eye as he grabbed a huge net of balls and strode out purposefully to our battlefield. As it turned out we had a ball — 40 of them to be precise!And the joy on the big man’s face as he whacked them towards me with alarming accuracy would restore the biggest cynic’s faith in football.
Peter Crouch might be a wealthy Premier League star with a famous model wife and all the trappings that go with being a national treasure.
UNSTOPPABLE ... Crouch scoring his amazing effort against City
But 40 minutes in his company proved to me the big guy is just a big kid at heart, still at his happiest with a football at his feet. Don’t believe me?
Crouch can still recall the first time he experienced that sensation of knowing he had timed a strike to perfection as if it was yesterday!
He said: “I’ll tell you exactly where I scored my first one — behind my mum and dad’s house when I was 10.
“We had a tennis court we played on and the net was our ‘goal’. We were playing a game of ‘World Cup’. I still remember it, clear as day.
SNAP SHOT ... Crouch and our man Graeme Bryce strike a pose
“One of the mates crossing it in, me going for the scissors kick and scoring. That was it, I was hooked! It’s the sweetest I’ll ever hit.”
He could have fooled me as he bombarded me with a never- ending supply of ‘worldy’s’. In all he took around 40 — we actually lost count because he would have gone on all day.
We stopped because I’m even shorter — on my knees.
In my defence I kept the big man down to five and made a few saves which turned the clock back 30 years for me.
GRAEME BRYCE, The Sun - Published: 07th April 2012