Everton manager Roberto Martinez was dumfounded by midfielder Phil Jagielka’s equalizer in the Toffees 1-1 draw against Liverpool in the Merseyside derby.
The 32-year-old center back received the ball outside the box and beamed a wonder strike that glided into the upper netting to draw the game level in the 91st minute.
“I don’t think I have seen a better strike in live football,” Martinez said. “You think it has to be an incredible strike to put it in the top corner and it was. The way he adjusted his body was quite impressive. Nearly with the outside of his foot, the outside of his laces. It helps it is at Anfield, in the last minute and for my team.”
Jagielka has made 211 appearances Everton since 2007, when he transferred from Sheffield United after a seven-year stint with the Blades. He has notched only seven goals, so this score will surely stick in the Englishman’s mind as one of his best endeavors.
On the national team, Jagielka has totaled 30 caps from 2008 to present day, and he was under scrutiny during England’s disappointing World Cup run this summer. Hodgson’s side failed to make it out of the group stage, sitting dead last in Group D’s table, and the Three Lions’ defense was shaky as a whole.
Nonetheless, Martinez has looked past the World Cup when speaking of Jagielka.
“When you look at some of the reports of his England performances, he didn’t play in the two games recently and because of our defensive record this season, there was talk of a World Cup hangover, that was unfair.
“Today I was so so proud. He cares for this club like no one else. It was an example of his belief in himself and the responsibility he has.”