Frank Lampard could more than sympathise with Cesc Fabregas when he was forced to retake his penalty against Qarabag on Wednesday night.
The Chelsea midfielder had the opportunity to put the Blues out of sight in Azerbaijan when Willian won a second penalty late on.
Fabregas stepped up to the plate, stuttering and scoring to the goalkeeper’s left, only to be denied by the referee’s whistle upon encroachment into the penalty area. It begs the classic footballing question – do you shoot the same side again or change your mind?
In this case, Fabregas stayed true to the original formula and once again defied Ibrahim Sehic to propel Antonio Conte’s men into a 3-0 lead that would later be added to by Willian.
The truth is that goalkeepers wandering too far from their goal line and inactive players entering the penalty area too early are common occurrences but it seems UEFA were taking a tough stance this week.
Wissam Ben Yedder was also forced to take his penalty twice against Liverpool during Sevilla’s dramatic 3-3 comeback at the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán Stadium.
The French striker – unlike Fabregas – decided to change sides but was still able to find the net.
The reoccurrence of retaken penalties led Gary Lineker to bring up the conversation during BT Sport’s Champions League coverage and he asked whether the panel had ever experienced a similar scenario.
Steven Gerrard shook his head and funnily enough, Rio Ferdinand hadn’t but Frank Lampard recalled a remarkable incident against West Ham in 2009 where he was forced to take three penalties in a row.
Lampard thundered the first penalty past Rob Green, strutting over to the away end to celebrate only for West Ham fans to delight in Mike Dean’s awarding of a retake for encroachment.
See what happened next, below:
So the England midfielder mixed it up second time around with the same result. Dean was staying remarkably true to the laws of the game, though, and wanted another.
For the sake of the crowd’s sanity, there was no encroachment third time around and Lampard scored to Green’s left hand side to finally level the score at 1-1.
It’s worth noting the remarkable mental strength of Lampard who did have offers from the likes of Didier Drogba to mix up the penalty taker.
However, the 39-year-old could rely on his sheer ability from 12 yards to ensure there were no mistakes at Upton Park.
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