The Big Debate: To Do The Crouch or The Studge?

In this series, we take a look at all of football’s talking points – from the hottest topics to ones we just made up during drunken bar debates – and attempt to dissect them and give you the definite answer once and for all.

P.S. We are confident and 100% certain that our views and opinions will (and should be) be the final answer to any of your burning footballing questions i.e. if you disagree with any of our verdicts, it simply means that you know absolutely nothing about football. So feel free to use these articles (we recommend you print and put them in your wallet or anywhere convenient) whenever you find yourself in those annoying bar situations, trying to valiantly prove that Roberto Firmino is the best forward in the league to a clueless friend - simply whip this right out and it will serve as the ultimate “shut-up-I-am-right” football bible, putting everything to bed.

P.P.S. Firmino is indeed the best striker in the league

So the big debate: Crouchy’s robot or Sturridge’s dance moves?

Goals are a pretty rare commodity in football, unless you are playing in the Sunday leagues where expecting a cricket score-line is not exactly implausible. It is a lot harder in the professional levels – often times, you will find that it is a much more level playing ground, the goalkeepers are actually not fat and surprise, surprise - are able to catch a soccer ball.

In fact in the Premier League 18/19 campaign, the most common score was found to be 2-0, with 1-0 not too far behind. This means that fans often have to wait a really long time before the net bulges, and one can hardly blame them for losing their shit and going absolutely crazy, losing themselves in that very moment when it happens. We think that the ecstasy is akin to having the lift finally arriving at your office level after being packed inside with 20 other people – for a whole of 5 minutes which often feels like an eternity especially when you are running late – during the morning rush hour, after seemingly stopping at each and every floor.

Divock Origi Scoring against Everton

Now imagine the horror the poor chaps at Anfield have got to go through after the 1-0 victory which saw the famous Divock Origi’s 96th minute winner against Everton, when they essentially had to be put through the agonizing lift situation for about 20 times consecutively.

And that’s why football celebrations are often such a big deal. They do not come by very often, and when players do the celebration right, they are often so iconic that they can almost define a player’s career. Heck, we even have a whole list of controls on FIFA to execute some really bizarre celebrations, often the tipping point to force your opponents to quit the game in pure anger, possibly smashing their TV screens in the process.

alan shearer famous celebration

Think iconic celebrations in the Premier League and we have Alan Shearer’s brilliant (but boring, perhaps we’ve seen it one too many times) hey-it’s-me-again-with-one-hand-in-the-air, Luis Nani’s banned acrobatic flip and Jimmy Bullard’s hilarious Phil Brown impersonation... to name just a few.

Those are all pretty amazing, but we reckon they are all quite easily replicated (something Sadio Mane will nick it off you and pass it off as his own), and the Premier League has surely seen better. Two riveting celebrations springs to mind, and they surely have to be right up there. Incredibly, the honour belongs to two former Liverpool players: Peter Crouch and Daniel Sturridge, leaving us to finally decide if Crouch’s mechanic arms has an edge over Sturridge’s squiggly ones.

Crouch and Sturridge were different in many ways – both had the number 15 on their backs, were really good forwards and had their trademark celebrations, but the similarities probably end there. Crouch was football’s funny man, his demeanour off and on the pitch always painted a picture of a lanky man who played the wrong sport, never seemed too bothered about what was going on around him, or the riches that came with the sport. Sturridge, on the other hand, seems to always cut a sulky figure on and (well, mostly) off the pitch, channelling an almost Anelka-esque aura about him while banging in the goals till present day. Crouchy too, won a Guinness World Record for the most number of headed goals in the league – probably not a footballing trait you would associate too much with Sturridge.

peter crouch famous robot celebration

But back to celebrations. Crouch’s robot first debuted in 2006 during England’s World Cup friendly against Hungary, and little did the big man know that it will go on and become one of football’s most iconic celebrations. It was actually at David Beckham’s house party that the idea was born – Crouch had just decided to do something stupid (in brilliant Crouch’s fashion) on the dancefloor as he made his way to the toilet – as he explained in his brilliant “That Peter Crouch Podcast”, which of course sports a cover picture of none other than an animated Crouch doing the robot.

So that was it, his England teammates soon caught on it and egged the forward to celebrate with the dance move the next time he scored. And that was how the “the Crouch’s robot” was born – a 2.01 metre grown-ass man contorting his mechanic arms to a cheering crowd of 50,000 other well, grown-ass men soon became a huge part of his life, and we absolutely love it.

The celebration went on and became a thing – kids loved it, teenagers were busting out those moves at amateur games and although his wife hated it, Crouch – in a very rock star fashion – decided to only unleash the robot when the occasion called for it and not after each goal, much to the dismay of those grown-ass men. It is like rock bands performing at a concert pretending to be on their last song, while fans plead and cry for an encore as they exit backstage, but knowing full well they will eventually get what they desire.

peter crouch robot celebration for stoke city

So after a significant robot hiatus, Crouch finally did gave the fans what they wanted, and busted out the gem of a celebration as he netted his 100th Premier League goal for Stoke City, an emotional moment that quite possibly left all those men in tears after witnessing the great feat.

We are no dance experts, but in terms of technicality, we would think the Sturridge’s dance has an edge - it is after all a tad more complicated and intricate, requiring just a little more flair and rhythm. It also requires you to contort all four of your limbs and head in completely opposite directions, all at the same time to truly pull it off. Definitely not easy, but with practice, a natural flair for dancing and a heap of time spent in the treatment room, those might well be the ingredients to mastering the Englishman’s dance.

carragher and sturridge dancing

We would think only a handful of players can replicate those physics-defying moves and not come across as a complete joke, and Alberto Moreno and Jamie Carragher unfortunately did not fall into that special handful.

The Trabzonspor forward once said in a BBC interview that he invented these dance moves only because it was a yellow card offence to pull the shirt over his head when celebrating, “Back in the day the best celebration was the shirt over the head, but now that’s a yellow card – that’s how this one started.” he explained.

So we are truly glad the FA finally got something right, as it is fair to say that without that enforced rule, we would likely be able to only have seen the bare chest of Daniel Sturridge – not exactly a bad thing but definitely not on the level of “Do the Sturridge”. It soon evolved, as Sturridge even started his own clothing brand with a silhouette of the celebration – although we are not too sure how that went down.

So after much deliberate analysis, it is now back to answer the age-old debate that we are sure is constantly on everyone’s minds: Imagine you score a 90th minute screamer against your biggest Sunday League rival to make it 16-15, how will you immortalize that moment in a dance? Will “Do the Robot” or “Do the Sturridge” be part of your repertoire?

Verdict: We are favouring the DStudge on this one, and we will recommend everyone crack into those limb-bending moves… only if they can. So truth is unless you fall in that very special 5% category and not got two left feet, perhaps Crouchy’s robot should be programmed into your moves instead.