As Manchester City struggled massively in the 1995-1996 Premier League season, the performances of their Georgian wizard Georgi Kinkladze were being noted by many observers. He saved his best moment for a strike of immense individual quality and composure against relegation rivals Southampton in March 1996.
Starting on the right-hand side of the pitch, Kinkladze spotted some space and decided to run infield, beating Southampton defender Simon Charlton. Despite Charlton’s best efforts to foul him, Kinkladze stayed on his feet and kept running. He evaded a second challenge from Ken Monkou and another sliding challenge from another opponent before waiting for goalkeeper Dave Beasant to commit. As he did, Kinkladze simply dinked the ball over Beasant and into the net.
Manchester City had a cult hero. They might have won this battle 2-1 but ultimately, despite Kinkladze’s best efforts, they would be relegated on the last day and Southampton stayed up.