A definitive* top 10 list of the best volleys in Manchester United history**

Inigo Montoya

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I remember Rooney scoring a good one vs Middlesbrough, just remember the ball didn;t touch the ground from a long punt up from the keeper. Someone headed it on and he finished it.
The chip/ lob in the same game won GOTS though. I couldn’t see it myself, the volley was better
 

DVG7

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I don’t think mkhitaryan one should be in the list. That manoeuvre has its own name, the scorpion kick. Not sure about the bicycles either. You could probably have those in their own “skillful goals” list or something, we have enough pure volleys to choose from.
 

iammemphis

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The last one I did on Free Kicks (link below) seemed to go down quite well... and as it's a slow football week for us, and this morning I can't be bothered to do any actual work, I thought I would continue the series by looking at the best Volleys in Manchester United history**

What is a pure volley I don't hear you ask? Well we're talking about a ball that hasn't touched the ground (sorry Tony V), or another part of the body (sorry Alan Smith) before being put into the back of the net... why is this the criteria you don't ask as you scroll down and just start looking at the list? Because I say it is.

Enjoy.

Further Reading:

A definitive* top 10 list of the best free kicks in Manchester United history**

*definitive in my mind, which has basically zero actual weight.
** Since football began in 1992.

10. Eric Cantona vs. Newcastle United

As anyone who makes a list will tell you, the number 10 spot is basically the place you put anything that you want to talk about... and I want to talk about this goal. It's not the greatest volley of all time, hell it's not even the greatest (half) volley that Eric scored, but it was a goal that basically won us the league that year, in a game where we had mainly just got battered by Newcastle and relied on Schmeichel to keep them out. That's what Eric did though... cometh the hour and all that jazz.

There's also something quite lovely about a backpost volley. The idea is simple... wang a ball to the far post and just get someone to put their foot through it to send it the other way and into the far corner... but I don't know, something about it makes me happy. I mean even when Giggs mishits it (or did he), it still looks lovely.



9. Andy Cole vs. Marseille

Wait... isn't this a bicycle kick? Well yeah it is, but by its very nature, it's also a volley... and overhead kicks of different shapes and sizes will feature prominently in this list.This however is a proper bicycle kick in the truest sense... throwing one leg up first before following through with the stronger foot, it's an art form, and it's an art form that Andy Cole executed perfectly here. Cole actually had a bit of a flair for the acrobatics... as Watford and Leicester will attest too, but this one will always stand out as the pick of the bunch for me.



8. Henrik Mkhitarian vs. Sunderland

You know, I've never been the biggest fan of this goal. Maybe its because Mhiki was underwhelming at best during his time at Old Trafford... maybe its because after he did this goal, Giroud went and did a better version of it the next week (and then made a wank celebration) or maybe its because it's definitely offside... but anyway, personal bias aside and looking at it objectively, it's still a pretty remarkable feet of dexterity from the Armenian... sure there's an element of throwing your foot their and hoping for the best, but isn't that what most acrobatic goals are? Just making sure you get your foot on the ball and the rest is just hoping it goes in? I mean you can't tell me Zlatan knew exactly where this was going can you?



7. Juan Mata vs. Liverpool

Continuing with the acrobatics, we have Juanfield.... a glorious day not only for the goals, but also for substitutions and stamps. This is the only scissor kick in the list - and whilst for me there's something about a scissor kick that makes it less impressive then an overhead kick, Juan gets extra points here because a) he's completely off the ground and b) the actual move / assist between him and Di Maria is a thing of beauty. Funny really, whilst Di Maria's stint with us will be seen as a failure, he'll probably always be best remembered for two chips... Anyway, all that aside this really is a great goal, a beautiful finish from Mata who adjusts his body wonderfully and gets as sweet a connection on the ball as you're likely to see.



6. Mark Hughes vs. Liverpool

Even people who didn't watch a lot of Hughes know a few things about the man... 1. He could hit a ball really really hard and 2. He loved a volley... and whilst this might not involve him hitting the ball very hard, it is absolutely a beautiful volley. Not only is the man running onto the ball at an angle away from goal, he also manages to lob the keeper with what happens to be a quite immaculate finish. I was tempted to put his last minute equalizer vs. Oldham in the semi-final of the FA Cup here instead, as I still remember going absolutely banana's watching it as a 7 year old and as a result is one of my favourite goals on a personal level... and whilst its a great volley, it doesn't really beat this in terms of pure aesthetics and sheer difficultly of the strike.



5. Wayne Rooney vs. Newcastle United

A goal that sums up Wayne Rooney. Is he proper angry? Yep. Is he fighting with someone? Yep. Is he scoring a ludicrous goal with the power of a thousand suns? Yep... and then some. You know this might actually be my personal favourite goal on this list... and whilst seeing it live and being sat right behind it probably helps with that, it's just the sound it makes, and the way that Given dives in vain, and the sheer ferocity of the strike that makes it truly wonderful.


Rooney had would later go on to score a pretty great volley against Middlesbrough in this very same season, which some idiot (me) has bizarrely decided to leave out of this list... but with (spoiler alert!) another Rooney goal to come, I think two is enough.

4. Paul Scholes vs. Bradford City

Bradford isn't just the place I went to University, oh no... it's also the originator of the corner routine. Now, I'm sure during the annals of time that other teams/people have put a corner to the edge of the area and someone has smashed it in... and they have definitely done it since, on a variety of occasions.. even against us... but there's a reason why doing so is called "The Scholes Corner" and that's because of this. Maybe its due to the boom of the Premiership, or just football being on TV more, but at the time a goal like this was unheard of. The precision of Beckham's corner and the sweetness of Scholes' strike... its a glorious thing. Thank God Dwight Yorke got out of the way aye?


I have a friend who's a Bradford fan that was there that day. He said everyone stood up and applauded when that went in... because I mean, you would wouldn't you?


3. Wayne Rooney vs. Man City

Did it hit his shin? Who cares.

A classic goal in every sense... probably the greatest overhead kick in the clubs history, and it's a winner against one of our biggest rivals. The height he hits the ball at, the athleticism on display, the sound the ball makes and the fact that it flies into the top corner... and you want to talk about a shin?!


Between this and Berba vs. Liverpool, people like scoring worldies from Nani's shit crosses don't they?


2. Paul Scholes vs. Aston Villa

This top 5 is almost (almost!) a straight shoot-out between Scholes and Rooney... arguably our two greatest scorers of great goals... and in the battle between the two of them Scholes comes out on top. In the world of Volleys there are two types that are notirously hard to hit... one is coming over your shoulder (see below) and the other is when it drops down from the sky with ice on it. Most people struggle to control a football coming from such height... never mind crashing it in off the underside of the bar... but that's Scholesy for you. I'm not sure what the best thing about this goal is... maybe its the fact that it goes in off the bar (always very satisfying), or the fact that Kiraly - him of long pants fame - tried to pretend the ball didn't cross the line, or just the fact that someone smacks Martin Tyler in the balls... whatever way you shake it, its a stunning goal.


If you remember back, this month had seen a slew of ridiculous goals in the premiership... Keith Gillespie of all people hit a rasping volley at the start of the month, only for Matty Taylor and Michael Essien to outdo him... but then along came Scholes with the best of the lot. Seriously, do yourself a favour and watch the Decemeber Goal of the Month... it comes with the added bonus of fat Adrian Chiles.


1. Robin Van Persie vs. Aston Villa

And so making Aston Villa have the honour of being the side that conceded our two greatest ever volleys... in steps Robin Van Persie to seal it with a banger. Seriously, is there a better way to seal a record 20th league title? It's a remarkable goal in every sense... the immaculate pass from Wayne Rooney, the run from RVP and, of course, the finish. The difficultly and technique that goes into a hitting a ball like that... and Van Persie makes it look easy. It basically cemented one of the best individual seasons from a player that you'll likely to see. Everyone knew he was the difference that year, and what better way to show that off then with a goal like this.

We all know Van Persie loved a volley... he but in a couple of special ones for Arsenal... but he obviously saved the best for us.


Sad thing is, VAR would probably rule this out for offside these days.
Rooney vs Newcastle is my favourite volley ever, should be number one in my opinion.
 

Oldyella

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I would have had Rooney v Newcastle as top, just for how he was angry and then just lashed the ball in, summed up in one moment.

But I'm always bitter about that goal as I had a ticket but lost it pissed up on way to ground and had to go back to the pub to watch it. Just not the same.
 

TRUERED89

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I would have had Rooney v Newcastle as top, just for how he was angry and then just lashed the ball in, summed up in one moment.

But I'm always bitter about that goal as I had a ticket but lost it pissed up on way to ground and had to go back to the pub to watch it. Just not the same.
No way :lol:, you must of been furious with yourself when you sobered up. I know I would've been..
 

Oldyella

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No way :lol:, you must of been furious with yourself when you sobered up. I know I would've been..
Yeah was livid. Amusing anecdote now but I was bitter for years :D
 

meamth

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It's not a pure volley! It's in there as an honourable mention under the Mata goal though
Hmm. Fair enough, I would love him to replace that scorpion kick though. Because it not just another goal, it was against the dippers.

Anyway great thread, need more though, maybe the greatest headed goals?
 

TRUERED89

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Hmm. Fair enough, I would love him to replace that scorpion kick though. Because it not just another goal, it was against the dippers.

Anyway great thread, need more though, maybe the greatest headed goals?
Ronaldo's one against Roma will probably take top spot. Then again during 09/10 Rooney scored like 10 headers in a row didn't he? He scored 3 against Milan over 2 legs, arguably his best individual season for us.
 

BR7

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I think Wayne’s two headers away at AC Milan we’re better
 

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Hmm. Fair enough, I would love him to replace that scorpion kick though. Because it not just another goal, it was against the dippers.

Anyway great thread, need more though, maybe the greatest headed goals?
Headers is definitely a future thread

No love for Arjen?

It's mentioned under the Scholes Bradford corner!
 

Siorac

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You cheeky b@stard :lol:, still makes me want to cry watching that back! We were literally minutes away from the semi final!
Well, 16 minutes plus injury time away, to be precise.

The stupid Olic goal at the end of the first half hurts more. So avoidable, so amateurish - had we gone in with a 3-0 lead at the break, we would have gone through.
 

harms

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If we’re allowed half volleys.....


This was a personal favourite from my youth. If ‘thundercnut’ was in any dictionary, this vid should accompany it.
Insane :drool:
 

OnlyTwoDaSilvas

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Hughes vs Oldham just defies logic. He leans back and goes under the ball, that should be ballooning out of Wembley stadium. No idea how he still manages to keep it low. And how does he even get to the ball first through 3 bodies?

His volley vs City is more emphatic to watch, but the Oldham one just makes me think "what? how?!" everytime I see it.
 

SportingCP96

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If RVP ridiculous volley vs Aston Villa is not first then i can’t take the thread serious.

EDIT: Just read the first page and glad to see it was first. Carry on.
 

Brightonian

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Lovely list, although not how I would order them. For me, Rooney's vs Newcastle is somehow my quintessential 'favourite goal' as a United fan. The absolute definition of 'cnuted it.' How we could do with a young Rooney now, the sheer animal ferocity of the way he played football.

If we're looking at technique, Fletcher's halfie vs Everton should really be in there. And obviously there are a score more Hughes and Scholes ones but you've chosen the right ones to sum up their respective signature efforts. Didn't Scholes pull off a 'Scholes corner' in both his last and then testimonial games?
 

Beachryan

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Always loved the Rooney run, chip and RVN chest and volley against Charlton. Assuming chest is permitted of course.
 

nokillingmoths

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Hughes vs Oldham just defies logic. He leans back and goes under the ball, that should be ballooning out of Wembley stadium. No idea how he still manages to keep it low. And how does he even get to the ball first through 3 bodies?

His volley vs City is more emphatic to watch, but the Oldham one just makes me think "what? how?!" everytime I see it.
Yeah one of myfavourite united goals. Just amazing technique.
 

Devil81

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How can anyone forget Mark Hughes volley vs Oldham in the FA Cup semi final.

What a goal.
 

youngrell

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It's strange, it's like there is never a video clip from fergies time without Giggs on the pitch.
Not just on the pitch but heavily involved in the clips. It’s amazing how much of a part he’s played in so many iconic moments for the club.
 

OldRed1

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Seriously, how can you have a heading A definitive* top 10 list of the best volleys in Manchester United history** then go back about 30 years. Didn't players volley the ball prior to then. These sort of posts really are silly.
 

TRUERED89

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Seriously, how can you have a heading A definitive* top 10 list of the best volleys in Manchester United history** then go back about 30 years. Didn't players volley the ball prior to then. These sort of posts really are silly.
Doubt OP would go through every era, let alone any of the posters. Don’t see anything wrong with the thread.
 

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Seriously, how can you have a heading A definitive* top 10 list of the best volleys in Manchester United history** then go back about 30 years. Didn't players volley the ball prior to then. These sort of posts really are silly.
I mean that's literally the joke... as people/Sky like to pretend that football didn't exist before 1992.

The reason it is the last 30 years is there is video for pretty much every goal we've scored in the Premiership era. When you go back beyond that it gets difficult.
 

OldRed1

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Doubt OP would go through every era, let alone any of the posters. Don’t see anything wrong with the thread.
I haven't anything against the thread if it's made clear that it's the last few years only or Premier League history. I saw a Bobby Charlton volley in a Youth Cup game that would possibly beat anything mentioned here but there was plenty of history before that even.
 

King7Eric

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I've always found RVP's goal a little overrated on here. Yes, the technique from both Rooney and RVP is amazing but this goal doesn't have the sheer audacity and awe factor of Rooney's goal against City or Scholes' volley against Villa. These 2 were genuinely stunning goals, that left you speechless. All Martin Tyler could muster after Scholes'goal on commentary was "How?" and we all know how Rooney's goal "defies belief". RVP'S goal just doesn't have that awe factor for me.