Nothing is certain in football, but a penalty kick is just about the best chance a team can get of scoring a goal. One shot from 12 yards, the kick taker against the goal-keeper.
Yet under pressure so many are missed. Here, we take a look at five of the best penalty takers in the world today and their favourite techniques.
Despite ‘Super Mario’s’ questionable temperament, on and indeed off the field, one thing that the Italian cannot be questioned for is his ability from the spot. Whether it’s the first or last minute of a match Balotelli is as reliable a penalty taker as there is and his 100% career record from 12 yards proves it.
The AC Milan striker likes to turn his penalty opportunities into a psychological battle and favours a slow, stuttered run up in order to tempt the ‘keeper into moving early allowing Balotelli to slot his penalty the other way.
The Everton left-back is stellar from any dead ball
situation and it’s no different from the penalty spot either.
He’s another who hasn’t missed from the spot in his career and his technique of taking his penalties into the top half of the goal probably contributes to that as its more difficult for a goalkeeper to save a well placed penalty high into the net.
The Real Madrid forward might have missed his penalty in
Manchester United’s Champions League victory against Chelsea but when it
matters he’s usually pretty deadly from the spot.
Ronaldo doesn’t favour a side and has experimented with stuttered run-ups but his ferocious shooting power and pin point accuracy is a deadly combination from 12 yards.
He might have missed one at home to Hull on Sunday but Lampard
is still one of the finest penalty takers in the world today.
Lampard favours hitting the ball low and hard into either corner (although he seems to go to the keepers right more often) but Lampard has hit pretty much every penalty in the book and has put away the vast majority over the course of his long penalty taking career.
The Southampton striker is simply unstoppable from 12-yards.
After converting against West Brom last weekend the newly capped England
international has a remarkable 32 from 32 record for the Saints.
Lambert is composed from the spot owing to his fantastic striking technique; he likes to hit his penalties hard and with precision into the corners and has full confidence to go for it anywhere in the goal probably thanks to his unblemished record.
Lionel Messi, Steven Gerrard, Didier Drogba, Robin van Persie, Andrea Pirlo, Mark Noble, Mikel Arteta, Xavi, Robert Lewandowski
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