Greatest penalty from a goalkeeper? Ricardo's spot-kick for Portugal v England in Euro 2004 | OneFootball

Greatest penalty from a goalkeeper? Ricardo's spot-kick for Portugal v England in Euro 2004

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On June 24, 2004, Ricardo played a pivotal role as Portugal dumped England out of Euro 2004.

The two sides played out a classic in their quarter-final tie.

Michael Owen gave England an early lead. Helder Postiga netted a late equaliser to send the game to extra-time.

Rui Costa thought he’d won it in extra-time with a brilliant strike, but Frank Lampard found the net late on to force penalties.

It was a topsy-turvy shootout with momentum swaying to-and-fro.

But it was Portugal who won it after Rodrigo’s legendary antics.

With the scoreline 5-5 on penalties, Darius Vassell stepped up in sudden death.

Bizarrely, Ricardo took off his gloves as he saw the England forward approaching. His mind-games worked as he dived the right way and kept Vassell’s spot-kick out.

Ricardo then stepped up to the mark himself and knew a successful penalty would send Portugal through.

And he managed to do just that as he took one of the greatest penalties ever from a goalkeeper. Ricardo absolutely leathered the ball into the bottom corner and well beyond the reach of David James.

View his legendary antics in the shootout below…

Ricardo has explained why he took his gloves off before Vassell’s penalty.

He said in Ben Lyttleton’s book Twelve Yards, per the 18: “We had practiced for penalties in training, and I had watched some DVDs looking at where England players had taken their penalties.

“But when I saw Darius Vassell coming toward me, I thought, ‘F****** hell, hang on! I have seen every player score a penalty on this DVD but not this guy. Nothing! Has he even taken one before?’

“I looked at my hands. F***, I have to do something. I ripped off my gloves, just took them off. Vassell looked at me, and he looked at the referee, who said, ‘That’s fine.’ To this day I still don’t know why I did that. I have never done it before, or since, but I felt I needed to do something.

“I saw Vassell was very nervous and he did not want to be there. I knew I was next up to kick and said to myself, ‘I will save this one and score the next.'”

That’s exactly what he did. While he made the whole of Portugal happy, his glove sponsors were not impressed.

He said: “They [glove sponsors] told me not to do it again and I never did.”

Ricardo’s antics against England in 2004 will always be one of the most legendary moments in European Championship history.

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