What with Fernando Torres signing with Chelsea this past week there was talk about how and if he would celebrate if he scored against his old team Liverpool when they lined up to play each other on the weekend. The topic became moot though when Torres failed to score and then was taken off at the 60 minute mark. There would be no Torres goal versus Liverpool yet.
However, it's an interesting topic, should players who are playing againt their old teams? Teams they've played on for years. Teams who have been paying their astronomical wages. Teams who have made them better players in most cases. I think the answer is: NO. Players who have been paid and cheered upon for years by one club and then sold shouldn't celebrate a goal they score on their old team. It's an easy answer. Have some class and respect to the fans and your former teammates.
That gets us to the Dennis Law backheel goal versus Manchester United in 1973, his old club. Law had scored 237 goals in 409 appearances while playing for United. And he still holds the record for most goals in a season at 46. Law, playing for Manchester City, thought his goal relegated United, but it turns out even a draw would put Manchester United down into the lower division. Law didn't even show a moment of joy after the goal and when substitued off put his head down.
Yes, but what about those players who are sold in an abrupt and poorly handle way? Do they earn the right to stick it in their face when they score?
This is where you have someone like Emmanuel Adebayor, who signed with Manchester City and then scored versus his old team Arsenal and proceeded to run the length of the field so he could slide on his knees and celebrate in front of the visiting Arsenal suppports. Who proceeded to go ballistic with rage at this disrespectful display by the former Arsenal forward.
But we don't know the whole story behind Adebayor and his relationship with the owners, the management, the coach, the fans. Did he have a good reason? Was this act in any way justified? I don't think so. There's just no need to shove it in the face of the fans? They are the ones who cheered Adebayor all those many years while he played with Arsenal.
Recently, Eduardo Da Silva scored against his old side Arsenal but didn't celebrate at all. Sure, the game was already decided, with Arseanl set to win, but the fans cheered Eduardo.
Here's another take though, from wise old Harry Redknapp. Don't players have the right to celebrate if they've been getting a lot of stick from the fans? Shouldn't fans be able to compose themselves and handle the situation?