20 years on: Kinkladze stuns the Saints
- 16 March 2016 09:33
- Posted by @timoscroft
It was 20 years ago today that Gio Kinkladze scored what is still regarded as one of the greatest goals ever scored by a City player.
Judge for yourself by watching the clip again – and again and again, yes, it really is that good – as the Georgian weaves through the Southampton defence before cheekily chipping the ball over goalkeeper Dave Beasant.
Signed from Dinamo Tbilisi in the summer of 1995, the midfielder established himself as firm favourite with some mesmeric displays.
As City journalist Dave Clayton says, “Here was a player that got people out of their seats with his incredible dribbles and incisive precision passing.
“He made goals, scored them and invariably there would be at least two or three moments in a game when he could take your breath away.”
Unfortunately, ‘Kinky’ could not prevent City from slipping out of the top flight into Division One and he left the pitch in tears after the 2-2 draw at Anfield that sealed relegation for Alan Ball’s Blues a few weeks after his stunner against the Saints.
But despite the rumoured interest of several clubs, Gio stayed at Maine Road for another two years. It wasn’t the easiest of times in the Club’s history, and his skills were not enough to stop City dropping into the third tier of English football in 1998.
He was sold to Ajax that summer, but Gio retained a special place in the hearts of Blues fans. Watch this goal again, and you'll see why.