All eyes are on Wayne Rooney tonight as he seeks to become England’s all-time record goalscorer in their Euro 2016 qualifier against Switzerland at Wembley.
The Three Lions captain needs just one more strike to break Sir Bobby Charlton’s long-standing record, having gone level with the World Cup winner on 49 in Saturday’s 6-0 thrashing of San Marino.
But Juan Mata is threatening to steal the headlines from his Old Trafford teammate after a remarkable goal in Spain’s Group C match against Macedonia this evening.
This was not a classic Mata curler or a strike on par with his acrobatic overhead against Liverpool in the Premier League last year. This was a very different type of goal.
It seemed as though the Red Devils playmaker was aiming a cross towards the back post, but Macedonia keeper Tome Pacovski made a mess of his wayward right-footed delivery and helped it across the line.
Mata’s cheeky smile and reserved celebration seemed to suggest that the goal – his 11th for the Spain senior team – was indeed unintentional. You can judge for yourself in the below video:
The 27-year-old made his international debut for Spain in 2009 and has since clocked up 36 caps. He was part of the squad which was victorious at the 2012 European Championships in Poland and Ukraine.
Spain are currently top of Group C after seven qualifying matches, level on points with Slovakia who host third-placed Ukraine this evening in a pivotal encounter on the road to France 2016.
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