It was the shot heard around the world.
Tim Cahill’s scorching left-foot volley past Dutch goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen was the 51st of what has been a terrifically entertaining World Cup finals.
It could be argued there have been none better.
Certainly, the outpouring on social media suggested Cahill’s goal was the best of the tournament.
What a strike , goal of tournament so far
— Robbie Fowler (@Robbie9Fowler) June 18, 2014
— Thierry Henry (@ThierryHenry) June 18, 2014
Is that better than rvp’s goal vs Spain? I think it is!!
— Philip Neville (@fizzer18) June 18, 2014
Cahill’s technique for the goal was exceptional. Never tried to smash it. Relaxed and let his technical skills guide the ball to the target.
— Joseph Barton (@Joey7Barton) June 18, 2014
Australia were about to be awarded a free kick when Mathew Leckie was clattered into, but the referee waved play on when the ball fell to Ryan McGowan.
Dutch defenders Ron Vlaar and Stefan de Vrij knew they were in a bit of strife as his lofted, first-time ball floated over them and into the penalty area.
Precisely how much strife became all too apparent when Tim Cahill snuck in behind the pair and smashed one of the sweetest volleys of his career past a despairing Cillessen.
The 34-year-old, Australa’s all-time leading goalscorer, could have taken a touch, but fortune favours the brave.
He described it as a “great moment”.
“Gowser (McGowan) crossed it from the right and the ball was sitting beautifully,” Cahill told SBS.
“Either I chest it or head it back. But if you want a shot at the title you’ve got to have a go at those. It just felt so right to hit it and I hit it sweetly.
“That’s what it’s all about. Defining moments. Another one in my career that I’m really proud of. Everyone dreams of playing on this stage.
“I want to leave a mark for all the kids back in Australia and around the world to be inspired by this today.”