Everyone likes a comical own goal and the Premier League has seen a number over the years.
Many strikers would be proud of some of the goals on this list… if they were in the right net. Instead, this list is made up of players putting the ball in their own net and ultimately ending up really embarrassed.
Thirteen is an unlucky number for some and here are the 13 funniest own goals in Premier League history:
- 2. & 3. Frank Sinclair (Leicester City vs Arsenal, Chelsea & Middlesbrough)
Leicester City are holding Arsenal to a 1-1 draw at Highbury in the final minute of their opening Premier League game of the 1999-2000 season. Emmanuel Petit whips a corner into the box that his headed across goal. Leicester’s Tim Flowers is under no pressure from the Arsenal players to claim the ball in his six yard box until Frank Sinclair steps up to head it past his own goalkeeper to gift the defending champions a last-minute victory.
The following weekend Leicester City have a 2-1 lead at Chelsea when the defender beat Blues striker Tore André Flo to the ball to smash it into his own net to gift his former side a point.
In March 2002 Leicester were involved in a relegation six-pointer versus Middlesbrough when, after only three minutes into the game at the Riverside, Frank Sinclair has coolly slotted the ball past Ian Walker from more than 30 yards under no pressure from the opposition. That proved to the game’s only goal and Leicester were relegated at the end of the season.
Rory McGrath describes the three own goals excellently in this video:
4. Tony Popovic (Crystal Palace vs Portsmouth)
Newly-promoted Crystal Palace had only taken one point from their opening four games of the 2004-05 season. Trailing 2-1 at Portsmouth in the final 10 minutes at Fratton Park, the hosts whip the ball into the penalty area only for Eagles centre-back Tony Popovic to score an own goal with a cheeky flick into the far corner. Iain Dowie’s side went down a point that season.
5. Olof Mellberg (Aston Villa vs Birmingham City)
2002-03 was Birmingham City’s debut Premier League season and their first back in the top flight since 1986. Aston Villa headed into the Second City derby at St. Andrews with the shorter Premier League odds but fell behind to Clinton Morrison’s goal after half hour. The Villans despair was compounded in the 77th minute when an innocent-looking thrown-in from Olof Mellberg rolled until goalkeeper Peter Enckelman’s boot and into the net to gift Birmingham a 2-0 lead. There was still time for Geoff Horsfield to add a third.
6. Jussi Jääskeläinen (Bolton vs Liverpool)
Bolton Wanderers were handed a blog in their relegation battle during the 2007-08 season when the only goal in the first half of their 3-1 home defeat at the hands of Liverpool came from their own goalkeeper, Jussi Jääskeläinen, remarkably turning an off-target effort from Steven Gerrard into his own net.
The Wanderers managed to stay up by a solo point that season to the relief of the Finn. Jääskeläinen had also been one of the top shot stoppers in the Premier League at the time.
7. Richard Dunne (Manchester City vs WBA)
10-man West Bromwich Albion came away with a 1-1 draw at the City of Manchester Stadium despite failing to have a single shot on target all game.
The Baggies were playing in only their second-ever Premier League season at the time following their promotion back to the top flight and saw Thomas Gaardsøe sent off after only 17 minutes. When Nicolas Anelka gave the home side the lead after 32 minutes most would have felt the game was in the bag.
However, Richard Dunne would fail to deal with a long ball and end up turning the ball past David James into his own net from 18 yards. West Brom would hold onto a point which would prove significant as that was the difference between them pulling off the great escape and not.
8. Ian Walker (Leicester City vs Bolton Wanderers)
Leicester City goalkeeper Ian Walker appeared to have done his job in 2004 when he denied Kevin Davies’ poke from a clever-worked free kick in their home match versus Bolton Wanderers.
The striker had even turned away in disappointment with his effort but missed Walker scooping the ball into his own net after trying to pick it up. The match would finish 1-1 and the Foxes were relegated back to the second tier.
9. Lauren (Arsenal vs Manchester City)
Early into what would be their Invincibles season, Arsenal had to come from behind at Manchester City after Lauren scored a very bizarre own goal after only 10 minutes. For those who weren’t paying too much attention at the time may have thought the Cameroon international was the striker after taking a good first touch before coolly slotting the ball into the corner past Jens Lehmann.
Goals in the second half from Sylvain Wiltord and Freddie Ljungberg gave Arsenal their fourth win from four to start the 2003-04 season.
10. Gareth Barry (Manchester City vs Southampton)
In a woeful performance during a 3-1 defeat at Southampton, Manchester City’s Gareth Barry had already given the ball away for the Saints’ opening goal before scoring a comical own goal to seal the game for the home side.
Rickie Lambert had played a seemingly harmless cross into the box from the left wing that Barry inexplicably passed into the far corner of Joe Hart’s goal. Even watching the goal again and again on slow motion it’s impossible to work out what the Manchester City midfielder was attempting.
11. Santiago Vergini (Sunderland vs Southampton)
In October 2014 Sunderland suffered the second biggest defeat in Premier League history when they went down to a humiliating 8-0 hammering at the hands of Southampton.
The Black Cats started their own downfall when defender Santiago Vergini volleyed a cross into his own net from outside the penalty area, giving teammate Vito Mannone no chance.
12. Stephen Warnock (Aston Villa vs Queens Park Rangers)
Aston Villa managed to fight back from 0-2 to gain a point at home to fellow strugglers Queens Park Rangers in February 2012. The visitors were gifted their two-goal lead when Villans left-back Stephen Warnock bizarrely, unchallenged, headed across his own goal into the far corner.
Goals from Darren Bent and Charles N’Zogbia rescued Aston Villa a point as both teams would stay up by the narrowest of margins on the final day.
13. Sam Ricketts (Bolton Wanderers vs Blackburn Rovers)
Blackburn Rovers picked up a valuable three points in a 2-0 win at the Reebox Stadium in a Lancashire derby in November 2009 with help of a 20-yard headed own goal from Sam Ricketts.
The Wales international’s attempt to cut out a deep cross flew past Jussi Jääskeläinen to give Rovers a 2-0 lead which they would hold onto.