Before I jump into what Frank Ribery managed to do this weekend in the Bundesliga, let me give you the low down on what a ‘Panenka’ is.
Antonin Panenka is a former footballer who played for the Czech Republic. In the Euro ’76 final, the Germans and Czechs went into a penalty shoot-out. With the game on the line, Panenka took the winning penalty, and he did it in style with an outrageous chip. This penalty became famous, and was coined the ‘Panenka’:
It’s incredibly risky, so you won’t see it too often. Francesco Totti brought it back in the Euro 2000 semi-final against Holland:
And Zinedine Zidane in the World Cup 2006 final:
Now Frank Ribery is a guy I have tremendous respect for. He’s one of the top players in the World right now. But I have a feeling he won’t ever attempt a ‘Panenka’ ever again (Stuttgart – Bayern Munich 1/27/09):
Speaking of bad penalty misses, since I’m on the subject I might as well end this post by showing you by far the worst and most embarassing penalty ever taken in professional football. I’ll show you two clips. The first is a penalty taken by Johan Cruyff way back in the day. He passed to a teammate, got it back, and scored. That was the right way to do it. The second clip is of Robert Pires and Thierry Henry trying to duplicate it. And failing miserably. But good entertainment.