Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard refused to celebrate scoring a 100-yard wind-assisted goal in a Premier League game against Bolton on Wednesday out of sympathy for his opposite number, who made the embarrassing mistake.
The US international’s first-time clearance from a back pass bounced about 30 yards from the Bolton goal and was blown by the wind over visiting goalkeeper Adam Bogdan, who was standing on the edge of his own six-yard line.
Howard, who was making his 250th appearance in England, didn’t react out of consideration for Bogdan and was walking back to his own goal when he was mobbed by teammates.
“It’s not a nice place to be,” Howard said. “I’ve been there before — a long, long time ago — and that was why I didn’t celebrate.”
The only other goalkeepers to score in the Premier League’s 20 years are Peter Schmeichel (2001), Howard’s fellow American Brad Friedel (2004) and Paul Robinson (last year).
It ended up being a bittersweet night for Howard, who put his team ahead with his goal in the 63rd minute, but conceded two goals in the next 15 minutes as Bolton rallied for a 2-1 victory.
“I was delighted that we were in the lead and would hopefully go on to get three points, but it’s not a nice feeling for a ’keeper, it’s really awful actually,” Howard said.
Howard’s clearance only ended up in Bogdan’s net because of a vicious wind that played havoc throughout the match at Goodison Park, with both teams misplacing passes and making mistakes.
“You could see everybody was mistiming balls. Defenders were missing clearances that normally they would put up the field,” Howard said. “The wind is the hardest condition to play in. Snow, rain, sun doesn’t matter, but the wind really does play tricks on you.”
Howard’s goal meant he upstaged compatriot Landon Donovan, who was returning to Everton to start a two-month loan from Los Angeles Galaxy.