Joey Guðjónsson

Remembering When Guðjónsson Scored From The Halfway Line

Goals from distance are widely celebrated in the world of football, such is the skill required to perfect the art form, but efforts from the halfway line are naturally a rarity.
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Names in the ilk of Rivaldo, David Beckham and Wayne Rooney come to mind from recent generations as architects of ridiculous goals from over 50 yards away from the opposition's goal.

However, on 4 March 2006, 14 years ago today, Leicester City midfielder Joey Guðjónsson joined the prestigious club with an extraordinary strike against Hull City on Filbert Way.

It came at a time when the Club were battling relegation in the Championship under the management of Rob Kelly, who had recently replaced Scotsman Craig Levein in the Foxes post.

Leicester's form had temporarily stuttered in English football's second tier as three consecutive victories were followed by two draws and a 2-0 defeat away at Ipswich Town.

Just as Kelly's men seemed to be hauling themselves away from danger, the threat of dropping down to their lowest-ever level on the pyramid returned, albeit briefly.

City's starting XI that day was: Henderson, Stearman, Gerrbrand, Kisnorbo, Johansson, Maybury, Guðjónsson, Williams, Hughes, Hume, Fryatt. It ended in a 3-2 win for the Foxes.

Ex-West Ham United defender Rufus Brevett, meanwhile, emerged from the bench on 88 minutes to make his first and only appearance for the Club on a loan deal from Plymouth Argyle. 

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Rob Kelly

Rob Kelly was in charge of the Foxes for the end of the 2005/06 season.

The occasion carried increased intrigue as it was the first occasion in which former manager Peter Taylor, who worked at Filbert Street between 2000 and 2001, returned to Leicester with Hull.

Taylor joined the Foxes following Martin O'Neill's four-year tenure, a period in time which included promotion, four successive top-10 finishes in the Premier League and two League Cup triumphs.

With excitement growing concerning the Club's move to a new 32,000-seater venue, King Power Stadium, Taylor had attempted to build on O'Neill's legacy and take Leicester to the next level.

Initially, it seemed as though he was performing the task, with City holding a place in the Premier League's top-four places as late as March in the 2000/01 season, but results quickly turned.

By September, with the Foxes rooted to the bottom of the table, Taylor departed and Leicester were relegated later that season, although Micky Adams limited their top flight absence to just one year.

As such, Taylor's return to Leicester was a prominent talking point in the build up to the visit of his Hull side, but City's Icelandic No.16 - full name Jóhannes Karl Guðjónsson - ultimately stole the show.

Iain Hume's superb opener - assisted by Guðjónsson - was swiftly levelled by Stuart Elliott for the visiting Tigers, but in the 64th minute a moment of magic delighted a crowd of 22,835 on Filbert Way.

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Joey Guðjónsson

Joey Guðjónsson is congratulated by his colleagues after scoring his first goal of the game.

The former Aston Villa midfielder collected the ball from Patrick Kisnorbo in his own half, taking a touch, then another, before spotting Boaz Myhill off his line at exactly the point he reached the halfway line.

One glance was all it took for Guðjónsson to realise one of the toughest feats in football was actually possible as he instantly proceeded to try his luck, lobbing Myhill and hitting the top corner.

"I looked once at the goal and at the goal keeper who wasn’t that far off his line," Guðjónsson said recently in an interview with Club Historian John Hutchinson for Monday's edition of CITY Matchday Magazine.

"I saw an opportunity and just went for it. It wasn’t a proper thought process. It was just instinct. I really went for it and it came off brilliantly. It was a brilliant goal!"

That success over Hull was the first of another three-game winning run, which included away victories at Luton Town and Millwall, helping City finish in the safety of 16th in the Championship.

Guðjónsson deservedly collected the Club's Player of the Year award in May, but later left Leicester to join Dutch side AZ Alkmaar before later returning to England with Burnley and Huddersfield Town.

Nowadays, meanwhile, the former midfielder, whose father Guðjón Þórðarson briefly managed Iceland's national team, is himself working in management at Íþróttabandalag Akraness in his hometown.

Leicester City Crest