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Apparently, this is all science and stuff

BBC: "Roberto Carlos wonder goal ‘no fluke’, say physicists:

They say it could be repeated if a ball was kicked hard enough, with the appropriate spin and, crucially, the kick was taken sufficiently far from goal.

[Their] approach eliminated the effects of air turbulence and of gravity and revealed the pure physical path of a spinning sphere.

"On a real soccer pitch, we will see something close to this ideal spiral, but gravity will modify it," explained Dr Clanet.

"But if you shoot strongly enough, like Carlos did, you can minimise the effect of gravity."

The crucial aspect of the wonder strike, according to the scientists, was the distance the ball had to travel to beat Fabian Barthez.

"If this distance is small," said Dr Clanet, "you only see the first part of the curve.

"But if that distance is large – like with Carlos’s kick – you see the curve increase. So you see the whole of the trajectory."

Now, I’m wondering why it had to be the French who found this out (the goal was scored against the French). I think they’re trying to make certain that they’re not just naturally unlucky; it’s science. If that’s the case, the English will soon be studying Maradona’s psyche to determine why he had to do this:

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