Gary Neville’s infamous ‘goal-gasm’ during last week’s Chelsea v Barcelona Champions League game may have appeared raw and spontaneous to viewers, but it’s an all-too familiar sound to his wife, Emma.
Neville’s reaction to Fernando Torres’ strike – which earned Chelsea a place in the Champions League final – has gone viral, with YouTubers quick to parody the former England defender’s climactic groan in a range of unlikely and hilarious scenarios.
Neville’s ‘gurgle of coitus’ is believed to have already caught on in the schoolyards of England, with young boys now spurning the dulcet tones of Martin Tyler for the more vocally challenging ‘goal-gasm’ as they commentate their lunchtime matches. Young men, too, are said to be now employing the celebratory sound during sex, much to the chagrin of ladies everywhere.
And the man himself, Neville, is happy for others to emulate what was originally an intimate sound known only to his wife and frustrated neighbours.
“For years Spanish-speaking commentators have dominated the goal celebration stakes – and I think it’s wonderful that now we have an English version to more than match the ‘Gooooooooollllllllll’,” he said.
“But to be honest, it was totally unscripted on my part; it just came out of my body, you know? That’s a groan I usually only reserve for my wife – and to be honest, it’s not something I’m proud of – but I’m glad that the world is celebrating it as an epic moment in televised sport.”
However, the sound that is now being celebrated worldwide was once a major source of embarrassment for the footballer. Neville admits that for years he was unable to achieve actual orgasm with various female partners, worried that, in the throes of passion, he might inadvertently emit his controversial cry.
“Back when I was a young lad and all the boys were running chasing tail and all that after a match, I would just have a few pints of lager and call it a night,” he remembers. “Some of the lads used to call me a queer for doing that, but really I was just worried that, should I get intimate with a bird, she’d think I was a bit of a wally once that noise came out of my gob.”
“It got to the stage where I simply stopped having orgasms through sex,” Neville confesses. “On the multiple occasions I did get laid, I used to fake an orgasm so as to avoid embarassment. Afterwards I’d go back to the team hotel room and pleasure myself with a footy sock – or a shin-guard – in my mouth. It was the only way!”
It was only upon meeting wife Emma – who Neville describes as “the most understanding woman in Britain” – that the England stalwart felt secure enough to finally embrace his secret quirk. And for her part, Emma – who describes the sound as “an involuntary burst of pure, unadulterated pleasure” – says that critics should consider her feelings before making jokes at the Neville family’s expense.
“The first time I heard Gary make that delirious moaning sound during orgasm I thought, ‘shit, is this guy trying to yodel in Spanish or something?’ Then I grew to appreciate it for what it was: unbridled enthusiasm, sheer ecstasy,” she told The Public Apology.
“It’s a celebration of our love – and that won’t change, especially now that the ‘goal-gasm’ is probably the most culturally important internet meme of 2012.”
But while Neville is clearly at piece with his unique vocal explosion, one thing remains shrouded in mystery: was the former Manchester United star actually mid-orgasm when calling Torres’ goal? While Neville has already shrugged the incident off to reporters as simply the product of a sore throat, a Sky Sports insider tells The Public Apology that he’s not so sure.
“If you monitor Gary’s behaviour directly after the goal, you can see he exhibited several post-ejaculatory symptoms. For instance, he completely lost interest in the game once the goal was scored. In fact, he proceeded to light up a cigarette in the studio before curling up and going to sleep,” the source says.
“He even refused to spoon Martin Tyler, which was even more unusual.”
By Dave Edwards