For Messi read Doherty as the two-touch penalty debate rages on
Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez's trick kick for Barcelona delighted many when they scored a penalty against Celta Vigo in February.
Many football fans also recall Johan Cruyff’s two-touch penalty with Jesper Olsen, for Ajax in 1982.
Northern Ireland’s Blanchflower and McIlroy also used it, however it is thought that the first two touch penalty ever recorded was by Northern Ireland manager and legend Peter Doherty, who started his playing career at Coleraine.
At the time of Messi and Suarez’s two touch penalty, Film Producer Evan Marshall had just finished perfecting his Spirit Of ’58 documentary on Northern Ireland’s qualification for that World Cup, where the story of the two-man penalty began.
“After the excitement from Barcelona’s penalty I put a clip of the Northern Irish penalty from Spirit Of ’58 on Facebook and within two days it received half a million views,” explained the film producer.
With the former Derby midfielder Doherty leading Northern Ireland from 1951 to 1962, it was very likely that it was he who introduced the concept to the Green and White Army.
“He was manager of Northern Ireland in 1957 when Danny Blanchflower and Jimmy McIroy did it and it was captured on film by the newsreels,” said Evan.
“Before he became manager Peter was one of the most famous players in the United Kingdom, it’s reckoned he was second only to George Best. Sadly not very much footage survives of him as a player, his best years were taken up by the war.
“Peter played after the war at Derby County and they got to the very first FA cup final that was played after the war which was a very, very big occasion and they won. One of the other players on the team was Raich Carter and apparently, Doherty and Carter tried this penalty.
“Trying to pin down online a source is very, very difficult. It may have been when they were playing for Derby County or it could have been in one of the exhibition matches played around then but it seems that these two players were the first to try it and then Danny Blanchflower and Jimmy McIlroy were the first players to have it captured on film.”
As Peter Doherty’s squad reached the World Cup finals where they fell at the quarter-final stage to France, Peter’s legacy can be added to as having a key role in inventing one of the most audacious moves in modern football.