UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
Ivan Provedel equalises for Lazio against Atlético Madrid: how many goalkeepers have scored in the Champions League?
Penalty-taking stopper Hans-Jörg Butt was the first to do so and incredibly scored three times against the same team.
LaLiga club Atlético Madrid looked all set to get their 2023-24 UEFA Champions League campaign off to a winning start with a hard-fought victory over Lazio in Rome, only for Ivan Provedel to have other ideas. On the face of things, there’s nothing especially unusual about a team scoring, or conceding, an injury-time equaliser…until you realise Provedel is the Serie A club’s goalkeeper.
There are few less sophisticated tactics in soccer than sending your goalkeeper into the opposition penalty area when your team is chasing the game and wins a late free-kick or corner. It’s a strategy which has a low success rate but paid off handsomely for the Italians, with Provedel heading Luis Alberto’s cross beyond Atleti goalkeeper Jan Oblak to clinch a point for his team with the very last touch of the game. It doesn’t get much more dramatic than that.
In doing so, Provedel, who joined Lazio from Spezia in the summer of 2022, became only the fourth goalkeeper to score in the UEFA Champions League, and the first in almost 13 years.
Hans-Jörg Butt’s three Champions League penalties against the same team
The first to do so was, unsurprisingly, German stopper Hans-Jörg Butt. Unsurprising due to the fact that he was known as the “penalty-taking goalkeeper”. What is, however, incredibly impressive is that he scored three penalties for three different teams in his homeland (Hamburg in September 2000, Bayer Leverkusen in March 2002, Bayern Munich in December 2009) and all three of them came against the exact same team. How’s your luck, Juventus?
Sinan Bolat: the first non-penalty goal
Perhaps even more mind-blowing is that the second goalkeeper to achieve the feat, Turk Sinan Bolat, did so the very next day after Butt had scored the last of his three penalties in the competition. Two goalkeepers scored one night after the other in the Champions League...what are the chances? Before Provedel, Bolat had been the only one to score a non-penalty goal, heading in a late leveller for Belgian side Standard Liège against AZ Alkmaar of the Netherlands.
Enyeama’s feat repeated by Provedel 13 years later
Like Butt, Nigerian Vincent Enyeama was a semi-regular penalty talker for Enyimba in his homeland and Israeli side Hapoel Tel Aviv, for whom he scored his sole Champions League goal. Like all of the others mentioned, his strike came in the group stage, this time against French club Lyon in September 2010.
Almost 13 years later, the wait is over and it was well worth it (unless you’re an Atlético Madrid fan).