England legend says Ukraine's goal was 'miles in'
Sir Geoff Hurst, the England World Cup legend involved in the most disputed goalline incident of all time, last night admitted of the latest furore: “It was miles in.”
Ukrainian hearts were broken last night as Wayne Rooney’s goalline header was enough to take Roy Hodgson’s side through to the quarter-finals of Euro 2012 ...but the major talking point was Marko Devic's effort which clearly crossed the line before being desperately hacked away by John Terry - only for the match officials to say ‘no goal’.
1966 England hat-trick hero Hurst - who of course bagged the crucial second of his three versus Germany in the final with the most contested 'was it in?' effort ever - said of Devic's shot: “Even my initial reaction was that it was in.
“I thought it had hit the roof of the net.
“Bearing in mind it was in Ukraine and against the backdrop of all their support, I couldn’t believe that the linesmen didn’t give it.”
Hurst has long been an advocate of goalline technology – and the latest incident simply reinforces his view that it’s a necessity for the game of football.
The striking legend, 70, currently working as a pundit at England matches at the Ibn Battuta Gate Hotel in Dubai for the Euro 2012 championship, said: “It has to be brought in – it’s becoming almost laughable. You take one look at that on technology and you can say within a few seconds whether that was in or not.”
Returning hero Rooney may have nodded England into the last eight from an inch out – but super skipper Steven Gerrard was the main man for Hurst on a backs-to-the-wall night for the Lions of England.
The 1966 hero said: “That’s where all good strikers score their goals – but for me Stevie Gerrard was magnificent. He drove us through – he drove us through to the next round.”
Hurst hopes new manager Roy Hodgson can take the country all the way to cup glory but admitted: “You need a bit of luck to win a tournament – and let’s hope we haven’t used up all ours.”