Roberto Baggio At 50: 10 Perfect Goals

8. FIORENTINA Vs. Verona (Serie A, 1988/89)

Just a year into his career, Roberto Baggio ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament, the first of many knee injuries which threatened to destroy one of Italian football's most naturally gifted players, and which resulted in the forward playing in debilitating agony for the majority of his career.

As the damage piled up on his troubled knees and his mobility reduced, Baggio's style of play became characterised by his immense technical grace, the eloquence of expression elevating him to a level of artistry which wouldn't have looked out of place on Brunelleschi's famous dome in Florence.

But before the constant hardship took its toll, Baggio's game included athleticism, creating a fantastic farrago of footballing fluency.

Baggio may have already undergone two knee surgeries by his fourth season with Fiorentina, but that didn't prevent him springing exquisitely in the air to instinctively blast home a bicycle kick from close range against Verona, via a despearate Luciano Bruni. Roby's aerial threat faded rapidly as his legs began to corrode, but like every great, he managed to fit at least one spectacular overhead strike into his opus.

Editorial Team
Editorial Team

Benjamin was born in 1987, and is still not dead. He variously enjoys classical music, old-school adventure games (they're not dead), and walks on the beach (albeit short - asthma, you know). He's currently trying to compile a comprehensive history of video game music, yet denies accusations that he purposefully targets niche audiences. He's often wrong about these things.