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REACTION | Tom King: "We noticed the wind earlier on when we were doing our warm up, so we took advantage of it and thankfully it went in"

20 January 2021

Tom King is hoping to enter the Guinness World Records after netting a freak goal during Newport County AFC’s 1-1 draw with Cheltenham Town.

The goalkeeper scored the first goal of his career with an extraordinary goal kick, which evaded everyone and bounced over Josh Griffiths’ head before nestling the back of the net.

King, who could hardly believe his luck with just 12 minutes on the clock at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium, may have etched his name into the history books for the longest goal scored in a football game.

AFC Bournemouth goalkeeper Asmir Begovic - one of King’s friends - holds the current record after his 91.9-metre effort found the back of the net during Stoke City’s Premier League clash against Southampton in 2013.

But King could be in line to take the crown off the Bosnian depending on the length of the Robins’ pitch.

"I’m actually quite good friends with Asmir, so I think I’ll have to give him a text and ask him how far his was and then get my tape measure out!" said King.

"I was a trainee at Porstmouth when he was the first team goalkeeper and I made the connection through a friend of mine because we used to wear the same gloves. He will be laughing and joking I'm sure."

Despite not knowing what was about to precede when he hoofed the ball down field from a routine goal kick, King revealed he was looking to make the most of the blustery conditions in Gloucestershire.

But the goalkeeper was aiming to pick out a man in amber, rather than the back of the home side's net.

"I was delighted to help the lads out but it wasn’t something I was going for.

"We noticed the wind earlier on when we were doing our warm up, so we took advantage of it and thankfully it went in. 

"To be honest, I was too busy trying to get hold of 'Podge' [Padraig Amond] because I thought he should’ve got hold of it! I was trying to put him in, but it took a lucky bounce and landed over the goalkeeper with the help of the wind."

The 25-year-old was reluctant to celebrate his goal because he could barely believe his luck - but also out of respect to the Robins shot-stopper.

And he also revealed he apologised to his opposite number Griffiths - a 19-year-old currently on loan at Cheltenham from Premier League side West Brom - after the full-time whistle.

"The lads were asking why I didn’t celebrate, but it’s the Goalkeepers’ Union and I even apologised to him after the game. I said sorry and if it was the other way around I’d like to think that he’d say sorry to me!"

King pulled off a string of impressive saves to keep the home side at bay after scoring down the opposite end, although he was frustrated that he failed to chalk up back-to-back clean sheets to go alongside his goal.

"I’m more concerned about putting points on the board," King added.

"And I’m personally disappointed with the goal that we conceded. We’ve got to tighten up at the back, especially so close to half-time, but we’re happy with a point and we move on to Saturday.

"This is a tough place to come and not many take points off these here, so it shows how far we’ve come as a team. We’re all disappointed that we haven’t managed to take all three, but we’ll be looking to improve and take that into Saturday against a team who we owe one to."

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