Jack Butland was linked with a £30 million move to Premier League clubs earlier this summer but, as things stand, he remains a Stoke City player.
The 26-year-old goalkeeper played against German third tier side MSV Duisburg in Stoke’s first pre-season friendly on Saturday afternoon.
And it featured one of the most bizarre finishes to a game that we’ve ever heard of.
With the scores level at 1-1 after 90 minutes, the game unexpectedly went to a penalty shoot-out.
Even Martin Spinks from the Stoke Sentinel was caught by surprise, writing in his live match blog: “We’ve all been caught short! There’s a penalty shootout to decide this one, pity nobody told us there’d be one.”
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He added: “There’s a trophy up for grabs, which has just been plonked on the pitch.”
Butland clearly saw this as his moment to shine, because not only did he face all of Duisburg’s penalties, but he also took all three of Stoke’s.
Wait, though, because it gets weirder.
Butland scored all three of Stoke’s penalties but was unable to prevent Duisburg from netted all three of theirs.
And after Duisburg netted their third penalty, the referee suddenly stopped the game and the trophy was handed to the hosts.
“Six penalties, all scored, all of ours were taken by Butland but apparently Duisburg take the trophy,” Stoke tweeted when the penalty shoot-out was unexpectedly ended.
Curiously, Duisburg tweeted to announce that they had actually won the penalty shoot-out 5-4, which doesn’t tally up with what anybody associated with Stoke are saying.
After one Stoke fan accused Duisburg of cheating, one of their supporters responded: “We didnt cheat... your players didnt want to play the penalty ... at least your keeper started... and then your couch surrendered :( did not like that end ..unfair for your fans …”
Have you ever heard of a weirder end to a football match?News Now - Sport News