From Hero to Zero for Dean Furman

Imagine the feeling. You’ve just beaten Spain, the reigning World and European Champions 1-0. It couldn’t get any better could it? Well, when it comes to the Championship’s Dean Furman, no it couldn’t.

The Kaiser Chiefs forward Bernard Parker’s solitary goal was enough to separate the two teams, at the stadium where Spain actually won the World Cup. Controversy reigned in the final quarter of an hour when Pepe Reina replaced the injured Victor Valdes, despite Spain boss Vicente Del Bosque having used his full allocation of substitutes.

Furman, 25, played the entire ninety minutes, winning just his 17th cap for the Bafana Bafana. Playing a steady game, the Doncaster Rovers player did not look out of place competing in midfield against Barca dynamos Sergio Busquets and Andres Iniesta.


Indeed, Spain had started seven of the team who had played in the World Cup Final just three years prior. But it was not to be for La Roja, and Furman and the rest of the South Africa team walked away from the game with the win – and no doubt feeling on top of the world.

For Furman, it was back to Doncaster, and a relegation six pointer against Yeovil the following weekend. Things were looking good for Furman and Doncaster when he gave them an early lead, turning in Manchester United loanee Federico Macheda’s cut-back.

In an attempt to score an equaliser, Yeovil laid seige to Doncaster’s goal, with the Championship’s bottom club drawing level when former Donnie defender Byron Webster swept home just before half time.

Heading out for the second half, Donnie looked confident, and rightly so after Yeovil’s abysmal start to the season. But things were soon to go downhill for Furman, when he was sent off for a vicious late tackle on Yeovil’s Ed Upson.

Yeovil sensed blood, and threw everyone forward in search of the three points that they so badly craved. It was not to be though, luckily for Furman, as Mark Duffy earned Doncaster their first win in five with a free-kick that Yeovil keeper Chris Dunn should really have dealt better with.

So Doncaster escaped with a narrow win, and Furman’s blushes were spared, but has there ever been an instance before when a player has fallen so far in such a short space of time?


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