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Tuesday, 17 September, 2002, 02:25 GMT 03:25 UK
Freak goal stuns Taylor
Aston Villa keeper Peter Enckleman walks off at end of the game with coach Eric Steele
Enckelman (left) looks shocked after the game
Aston Villa manager Graham Taylor was stunned after a humbling 3-0 defeat by fierce rivals Birmingham at St Andrews.

The former England boss admitted he had never seen a goal like Birmingham's second before.

Goalkeeper Peter Enckelman looked ready to make a routine clearance from an Olof Mellberg throw-in before trying to trap the ball and letting it roll under his foot and into the net.

Referee David Elleray ruled that the Finn had made contact with the ball and gave a goal.

Taylor said: "It's a sloppy goal but probably the sloppiest of luck. You wouldn't expect a throw-in to go straight into your own net.


Very few people have seen a goal like that - I certainly haven't
Graham Taylor
Aston Villa manager
"It will be very humbling for the Villa supporters. There is no joy for us at all this evening - it's more than a disappointing night."

Villa, who went behind in the first-half to a strike from Clinton Morrison, had looked capable of getting back into the game before Enckelman's error.

"At the start of the second half it looked promising," Taylor said.

"We were a goal down but very few people have seen a goal like that - I certainly haven't.

"That goal didn't help matters and neither did the third. We've defended well this season but not scored at the other end.

"We've defended very poorly this evening - we never give away goals like that."

Taylor admitted Enckelman did not realise he had to make contact with the ball from the throw-in for it to be a goal.

"Peter felt once the throw-in had gone in it was a goal anyhow - he did not realise he had to touch it. He does now of course.

"I asked him if he touched the ball and he said 'I haven't got a clue - but I thought I hit the ball.'"


It is a wonderful night for Birmingham fans
Steve Bruce
Birmingham manager
"His head in hand reaction gave the impression that he had touched it though."

Birmingham's delighted manager, Steve Bruce, admitted his side had enjoyed the better luck but insisted they deserved to win.

"We've had the bounce of the ball and the rub of the green," he said.

"But overall I think we deserved it. I thought we were the better side in the first half and deserved to go in front.

"We had to ride our luck for 20 minutes in the second half but it was inevitable they would come back into the game at some stage and we will have to learn from that.

"It was an electric atmosphere and the fans have waited a long time for this.

"They will enjoy it tonight and they deserve to enjoy it. It is a wonderful night for Birmingham fans."

But the night may turn sour for Birmingham as referee Elleray will report several pitch invasions by Birmingham fans.

Villa captain Steve Staunton was confronted by one fan and then Enckelman was taunted by another supporter just inches from his face after conceding his horror goal.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Villa keeper Peter Enckleman
"It should have been a corner - not a goal"
Villa boss Graham Taylor
"Enckelman didn't know the rules of the game"
Birmingham's Robbie Savage
"This was something else"
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