Stephen Ward has scored one of the best goals ever by an Irish player in the Premier League
Mother of the sweet, divine Lord, this was sensational.
The beauty of this Stephen Ward goal is that it looks like Burnley planned it.
The Ireland international has scored the greatest goal in his career and it is a strike that rivals anything ever proudest by a player from the Emerald Isle in the Premier League.
With the Clarets already leading league champions Chelsea 1-0, and with Blues defender Gary Cahill sent off, Ward went for the jugular and deposited an absolute cracker past Thibaut Courtouis.
The move started off with Ward standing over a free. Instead of pumping it forward, he plays the ball back and receives it as he hares off up the left wing. He exchanges passes with Jack Cork before heading towards the Chelsea box.
Ward takes a lofted pass from Cork on his chest, ghosts past N'Golo Kante and sets his sights on goal.
With two Chelsea defenders going to close him down, Ward leathers a drive that Courtouis can get nowhere near.
The goal was so good that the NBC match commentator mistook Ward for Burnley and Ireland teammate Robbie Brady.
The only goal that can surely compete with Ward's for best Premier League of the last few years was one scored by Jeff Hendrick [also of Burnley] last season.
Pat Nevin, who was on commentary duty for the BBC, said Ward's strike was 'stunning in every way'. He commented:
"Every Chelsea player assumed Burnley were about to lump the ball into the box, but they didn't and instead played it short. The ball eventually fell to Ward and the volley into the top corner form than angle was absolutely phenomenal. No blame attached to the goalkeeper."
Let's hope he brings this attacking form back to the Ireland squad for the World Cup qualifiers.
Tony Cascarino on the SportsJOE Live couch and Rory Best answer questions.
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