We caught up with Arsenal fan Dan Levy, to talk blue arrow Arsenal shirts, AC Milan kits and “chest and volley” world cup goals.
What was your first football shirt?
My first kit was an Arsenal late-80s home shirt: red torso, white sleeves, made by adidas with JVC as the sponsor.
I had quite a few of the Arsenal away kits as well, including that preposterous early-90s yellow one with the blue arrows plastered all over it. The only player name I’ve ever had on a shirt was Ian Wright, number 8, on the back of a blue, mid-90s, Arsenal away kit.
What is your favourite football shirt?
I can’t really think of one that stands out, apart from the aforementioned Arsenal blue-arrow monstrosity, which I do quite like.
… For no particular reason I think I’ll say the AC Milan home kit – the ones from the 50s and 60s look cool, I also love the 2000-2002 version.
I feel like I’m supposed to romanticise old football shirts, and the Arsenal ones from the 70s are great, but I really like the modern look of many kits as well.
What is your favourite goal?
It’s Maxi Rodriguez for Argentina against Mexico at the 2006 World Cup, a game-winning, extra-time volley. It came in the 98th minute. Captain Juan Pablo Sorin receives the ball from Lionel Messi and chips a cross-field pass from left to right towards the corner of the penalty area.
Maxi doesn’t bring it down; instead, he thumps the ball up in the air with his chest, in the direction from whence it came, and hammers it into the top far corner with his left foot. It’s at the World Cup; it’s a match winner, and, arguably best of all, Maxi is actually right footed. He later credited his grandfather for encouraging him to use both feet.
But I think what does it for me is the power and the beautiful arc of the shot, that thrilling fraction of a second it takes to fly in.
Also, there is a special place in my heart reserved for chest-and-volley goals. For me, they’re the ultimate. When people fantasise about scoring a winning goal at a World Cup as a kid, it’s chest and volley they’re dreaming of, right? For any youngster who saw that Maxi Rodriguez effort, it must be.