Robbie Earle is a former Jamaica national senior football representative who scored the country's first-ever goal at the FIFA World Cup. Earle scored in a 3-1 loss to Croatia in France 1998.
I have always said the goal (against Croatia in the 1998 World Cup in France) was the most important of a 19-year playing career. Describing it as my own personal JFK moment where people, to this day, like to tell me where they were when they saw the goal.
I recall the ball going out to the left wing to (Ricardo) 'Bibi' Gardner, who was one of the players I read very easily. I recall Bibi taking on the fullback, then looking to send over a cross with the outside of his left
The whole period after the goal is somewhat surreal as I don't really remember too much apart from the salute gesture, which was something goalkeeper Aaron Lawrence devised and was my way of saluting the country in respects for me getting the chance to play on the world stage. I sometimes wish I was able to have an out-of-body experience because all my friends and family said it was the greatest half-time celebration ever at the stadium. While at the same time we were in the sanctuary of the dressing room, getting further instruction from coach Rene Simoes, missing out on all the fun!
I think the goal helped to put Jamaican football on the world map and that the Reggae Boyz are now being taken more seriously. It assisted the work and efforts of the coach, Simoes, and all the staff and sponsors who had the vision and the drive to see the World Cup project through to fruition and
In many football circles, the goal has defined who I am often being introduced as "Robbie Earle, who scored the first goal for Jamaica in 98 WC". I think I was christened Robbie Earle, so I often think
The goal has definitely had a very positive effect on my life and I never tire of reliving the memory, so thanks for the opportunity. I am also
1. The Ja World Cup goal is the top in my career.
2. FA Cup equaliser