The saying goes that every picture tells a story and each Monday FIFA.com will set out to prove just that. On a weekly basis we will select an image from our vast archive of photos documenting the history of the beautiful game to highlight its interesting nature, unusual scenario or ability to catch the eye. Read more below to discover further details about what you can see above, and click the links on the right hand side to enjoy previous editions of this series.
It’s a South Africa-born, British nationalised, Zimbabwean international Kop icon impersonating a global cult icon! That’s right, it’s the one and only Bruce Grobbelaar doing his impression of Superman!
And just like the comic-book hero, the Liverpool goalkeeper had his very own superpower: unnerving opponents when they were taking penalties against him.
Grobbelaar did it in no less a game than the 1984 European Cup final. With Roma in the ascendancy, the Reds No1 did his infamous ‘spaghetti legs’ routine to imply that Bruno Conti was feeling the pressure. The tactic worked, with the Giallorossi No7 blazing his spot-kick over the crossbar. Grobbelaar repeated the trick when he faced Francesco Graziani, who appeared rattled and duly failed to keep his effort on target.
Liverpool went on to win the first ever European Cup final shoot-out 4-2. Grobbelaar’s antics that night in the Italian capital made him an instant club legend.
“People said the ‘spaghetti legs’ routine was being disrespectful to their players, but I was just testing their concentration under pressure,” Grobbelaar explained. “It was a test they failed.”