This is of course subjective.
Chelsea have scored many great goals in the past ten years, let alone in our lifetimes. But for me, this is the pinnacle. My favorite goal of my football-aware lifetime — i.e. roughly two and a half decades. That's not a slight on any of the ridiculous goals that Chelsea have scored during that time, this one's simply my favorite.
I suspect a lot of it has to do with the commentary, Martin Tyler's classic "Comes out to Essieeeeeeeen" etched in my memory probably just like his similarly styled scream for Drogba's equalizer in Munich. Add let's not forget the unbridled joy of Andy Gray's co-commentary. Unstoppable, unsaveable. Had I watched this with a different commentary track, maybe it wouldn't be the top-top. But I didn't and so it is.
Ten years ago today.
Unfortunately, back-to-back reigning champions Chelsea had to settle for the 1-1 draw in this game, after hitting the woodwork twice in the closing minutes (this game also featured the hilarious Drogba vs. Lehmann dive-off). Even more unfortunately, Essien was prevented from truly becoming the greatest midfielder of all time by his multiple and debilitating injuries.
Three years after his final Chelsea appearance, the now 34-year-old Essien has been training at Cobham all season in a bid to keep himself in shape and try to continue his playing career. He last played for Panathinaikos in Greece.