Last night, something utterly remarkable happened in the Champions League.
No, we’re not talking about Celtic managing to restrict PSG to a mere seven goals, but the banishment of a dreadful record that had extended to over a decade.
In successfully keeping Benfica at bay to help ensure a 2-0 win for CSKA Moscow, erstwhile goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev managed to register his first Champions League clean sheet in 11 years. ELEVEN. YEARS.
Since then, 43 matches have passed in which the Russian stopper has let at least one goal slip past him. As they say, 44th time’s a charm.
Indeed, the last time Akinfeev managed to go for an entire game without conceding was in November 2006, when his CSKA side hammered out a drab 0-0 draw against an Arsenal team that featured Justin Hoyte and Jeremie Aliadiere.
To put that in some kind of further context, Kylian Mbappe was just seven years old and ‘Star Girl’ by McFly was riding high at No.1 in the UK pop charts.
Akinfeev is still way, way out in front in terms of the Champions League record, with ex-PSV ‘keeper Ronald Waterreus second on the list having gone 16 matches without failing to garner a clean sheet between 1997 and 2000.
Antonios Nikopolidis of Panathinakios is third (15 games, 2004-2007) and Newcastle’s Shay Given is fourth (14 games, 1997-2003).