Generally there are two types of pitch invasion in football, the mass assault and the lone wolf. The first can be terrifying but the second is usually comical, whether it's a naughty streaker or the drunk attention seeker, for those brave (or stupid) enough to leap over the advertising hoardings, fame and immortality can follow. Of course, you also risk becoming a laughing stock if you mess-up your big moment!
During the recent F.A. Cup clash between Eastleigh FC vs Bolton a fan managed to evade security staff and make his way from the half-way line to the penalty area, Amazingly Eastleigh came agonisingly close to scoring against Bolton just before the cheeky fan reached the ball, he eventually slipped on his arse and missed his chance to score a wonder goal.
The scenes of a fan running onto the pitch at the Silverlake Stadium on Saturday 9th January 2016 took me right back to a magical footballing moment from the 1970s. During a match between fierce local rivals Manchester United and Leeds United a teenage boy who'd grown frustrated by the 1-1 scoreline decided to take matters into his own hands. The boy (Chris O'Keefe) vaulted the small wall surrounding the pitch perimeter at Old Trafford and raced down the wing like Ronaldo, finding himself with the ball at his feet following a clearance from a Leeds defender, he lets rip with a low shot which narrowly misses the goal. A Leeds defender chases the lad towards the Stretford End where the youngster milks his moment of glory before being carted off by the police.
The Boy On The Pitch – Old Trafford
The incident is now affecteonality referred to as ‘The Boy On The Pitch‘ or the ‘Genius Of Old Trafford‘. Even the TV commentator remarked “It wasn't a bad shot he played”. To be fair the lads had more shots on target at Old Trafford than the whole current Manchester United team under Louis Van Gaal!
Incidentally the FA Cup 4th Round draw has thrown up the possibility of Eastleigh FC meeting Leeds United FC in the next round, should the Southampton based side overcome Bolton in a replay scheduled for Tuesday 19th January at the Macron Stadium. As the only non-league outfit left in the FA Cup the stewards at the Macron Stadium should be ready for a pitch invasion should the plucky underdogs do the unthinkable and beat Bolton!