The next installment of a weekly series that showcases the three best goals of the week (plus more if we can’t decide), as decided by yours truly. Or us truly. Us trulies? Ah, by the staff here.
1-0 Fiorentina (6-1 Victory over Chievo Verona)
It only took 8 minutes for Fiorentina to get on the board - in what would be the beginning of a total demolition of Chievo Verona - by way of a looping strike from distance off the foot of Serbian defender Nikola Milenkovic. The play starts off promising with Gerson sending a loft of a cross into the box directly to the feet of Giovanni Simeone, who does well to control and thread a ball across through a dummy by Federico Chiesa to the oncoming and wide open Marco Benassi. His shot on target forces a save by Andrea Seculin, which rebounds to a spatially unaware Pawel Jaroszynski who should’ve either put the ball out of play or launched the ball up near midfield, but instead sends a half volley just outside the area, setting up a 50/50 between the imposing goal-scoring Serb and the diminutive Emaneule Giaccherini. Milenkovic rises, heads down and gets around his defender in a quick display of timing and strength, and fires a beautiful half-volley from distance under the crossbar and over and outstretched Seculin.
What a great start to what would be an inevitably sad end for our boys in red and black. A beautifully orchestrated team goal that shows signs of what could be a deadly counterattack option for Milan, the opening goal starts in the defensive end with a 65 meter long ball by Mateo Musacchio, which is brought down expertly by Suso who collects, turns, and weaves inside in quick succession before sending a whipped cross across the pitch and into the box onto the head of the sprinting Higuain. Instead of putting the ball towards goal or sending it across, he heads the ball backwards into the path of the onrushing Giacomo Bonaventura, who takes a page out of Zlatan’s book, and delivers a flying, almost karate-style half-volley, striking the ball with the outside of the right foot and bending it away from the stunned and hopeless David Ospina.
1-0 SPAL (1-0 Victory over Parma)
Another week down, another wonder-goal from SPAL, just as we all predicted, right? A nice team build-up from the back, starting with some triangle work between Felipe, Pasquale Schiattarella (now that is an Italian name), and Francesco Vicari, the latter of whom advances the ball to Simone Missiroli. A quick horizontal pass out wide to the right allows Jasmin Kurtic, last week’s hero, enough time to step and thread the ball up to the advancing Andrea Petagna, who quickly draws an extra defender before slipping the ball backwards to Manuel Lazzari on the edge of the box. Lazzari takes advantage of the extra space with a quick couple of touches before sending a hard cross to the penalty spot, where it is met with a tremendous side volley by the goal scorer Mirco Antenucci who drills this ball into the upper left corner so quickly, Parma goalie Luigi Sepe is still recovering from the whiplash of craning his neck to watch the net pop. Additionally, let’s take a moment to celebrate the luxuriously Italian surnames featured on this SPAL team ::kisses fingers::
1-0 Roma (3-3 Draw with Atalanta)
Okay, we know it’s only the second week, but could this finish as one of the top three goals of the year? All it took was a literal couple of minutes, and some very early possession by AS Roma sees Bryan Cristante wire a perfectly weighted through-ball down the right sideline into the path of the sprinting young Turkish international, Cengiz Under, who cuts back deftly in towards the field and makes quick work of Jose Luis Palomino. After quickly looking up, he delivers a low cross into the feet of the wrong-facing Javier Pastore, whom traditionally has a flair for the dramatic and does not disappoint. With his back to the opposition’s net, and with only a few feet of space between him and Atalanta defender Beret Djimsiti (try saying that fast, if you’re not Albanian) he backheel-volleys the ball into the far post past a sprawling Pierluigi Gollini. What. A. Goal.
Bonus: My favorite goal was scored by Soualiho Meite, who collects a carom outside the box before cleverly flicking the ball over a sliding Ivan Perisic, and slotting the ball off the near post just past the outstretched hand of Samir Handonovic. This would be the goal that ensures the there would be two teams from Milano to squander a two-goal lead, while making sure Inter Milan would not leave the field with ALL three points.