Best goals from beyond halfway: Kane, Beckham, Rooney, more

Harry Kane continued his flying start to life at Bayern Munich this weekend with a hat trick in what proved to be a chaotic but highly eventful 8-0 thrashing of Darmstadt, which saw all eight goals scored in the final 40 minutes of the match.

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The former Tottenham striker rattled away his 12th, 13th and 14th goal (and seventh assist) in what was only his 13th game for Bayern, but only after the Bavarian giants had been reduced to 10 men with less than five minutes played. Darmstadt then had two players sent off themselves in an otherwise pedestrian first half that came to an end without a single goal being scored.

The second half saw Darmstadt capitulate in spectacular fashion as Kane opened both the scoring and the metaphorical floodgates in the 51st minute. However, it was the Bayern forward’s second goal of the evening that will go down as one of the best of his career.

After picking the ball up in his own half, Kane took a quick glance upfield, saw that goalkeeper Marcel Schuhen had strayed from his penalty area and duly unleashed a monstrous 60-yard shot that sailed high over him and sneak underneath the crossbar.

With that, Kane became the latest high-profile entrant to a select group of players who have successfully managed to find the back of the net from beyond the halfway line.

Kemar Roofe (Rangers) vs. Standard Liege, 2020

Roofe’s gargantuan solo goal against Standard Liege was clocked at a distance of 54.6 yards which makes it the longest strike ever registered in the Europa League.

Wayne Rooney (DC United) vs. Orlando City, 2019

Rooney laid down the blueprint for his England successor Kane with a mighty 60-yard wallop for DC United that flew in above the head of Orlando goalkeeper Brian Rowe, with the veteran forward’s long-range strike dipping sufficiently to kiss the goal line on the way in.

Wayne Rooney (Everton) vs. West Ham, 2017

Amazingly, it wasn’t the first time that Rooney hit the mark from his own half, having previously scored with a similarly Herculean hoof during his return season at boyhood club Everton. The shot was measured at 59 yards which was the furthest out that a Premier League goal has been scored since April 2015.

Charlie Adam (Stoke) vs. Chelsea, 2015

That formidable strike in April 2015 was scored by Stoke midfielder Charlie Adam, who powered home one of the most audacious consolation goals the Premier League has even witnessed in what proved to be a 2-1 defeat for the Potters at Stamford Bridge.

Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) vs. West Ham, 2014

West Ham were again on the receiving end of a Rooney rocket when the Manchester United striker smashed a looping lob over in a 2-0 victory. Coincidentally, David Beckham was in the crowd at Upton Park to watch Rooney emulate the famous halfway line strike he scored for United back in 1996 (more on that shortly).

Orlando Engelaar, (Melbourne Heart) vs. Central Coast Mariners, 2014

Amazingly scored on the same day as Rooney’s effort former Netherlands international Engelaar made a valiant attempt to trump the Englishman in the “long distance goal of the weekend” stakes with an absolute cannon against the Mariners. You can decide for yourself if it was better than Rooney’s looping effort against West Ham.

Alex Colon (Deportivo Quito) vs. Deportivo Cuenca, 2013

Colon thumped a breathtaking goal in off the underside of the crossbar during his side’s 5-1 mauling of Deportivo Cuenca in the Ecuadorian Primera A division.

Maicon (Porto B) vs. UD Oliveirense, 2013

Porto B’s Brazilian centre-back Maicon Periera Roque (plain old “Maicon” to his friends) smashed an almighty free kick over the Oliveirense keeper and in without bouncing from well within his own half during a Portuguese second-tier game last year.

Safe to say nobody expected Maicon to attempt something so outrageous, least of all the cameraman.

Dejan Stankovic (Inter Milan) vs. Schalke, 2011

A rare example of a full-on volley from halfway, Stankovic contorted his body and returned Manuel Neuer’s unorthodox headed clearance back over the Schalke stopper with industrial quantities of zeal.

Rivaldo (Barcelona) vs Atletico Madrid, 1998

Rivaldo, in customarily nonchalant style, looked up, assessed his options and proceeded to casually waft one in from the halfway line during his Barca heyday.

Xabi Alonso (Liverpool) vs. Newcastle, 2006

Alonso made a bit of a habit of scoring from more than 50 yards during his Liverpool days, but the refined Spanish midfielder’s spectacular effort against Newcastle stands head and shoulders above the rest.

Mor Diouf (Supersport United) vs Mamelodi Sundowns, 2013

Having broken up an attack on the edge of his own area, Diouf warded away his interfering teammates and set about cracking in an absolute monster shot from over 70 yards out.

Nayim (Real Zaragoza) vs. Arsenal,1995

Having left Tottenham to join Zaragoza a couple of years previous, Nayim popped up to ruin Arsenal’s chances of winning the 1995 Cup Winners’ Cup by whacking a long-ranger over back-peddling goalkeeper David Seaman in the final seconds of extra time to win the game 2-1.

Of course, to this day Spurs fans still goad Seaman for letting such a speculative effort slip through his grasp, chanting “Nayim, from the halfway line” in his direction at every available juncture.

David Beckham (Manchester United) vs. Wimbledon, 1996

Still used as a reference point for every similarly rangy strike scored to this day, Beckham’s arching strike (famously achieved despite wearing someone else’s boots) against Wimbledon on the first day of the 1996-97 season has become an archetype of the genre.

Ryujiro Ueda (Fagiano Okayama) vs. Yokohama FC, 2011

A special mention must go to Japanese defender Ueda, who as far as we can tell is still the world-record holder for the longest headed goal ever scored after flexing his neck of steel to nod one in from 58.6 metres against Yokohama FC (beating a record that was set by Tromso’s Jone Samuelsen weeks earlier.)