Football

Top 5: Premier League free-kick takers 13/14

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There have been 24 free-kicks scored in the Premier League so far this season. It's becoming increasingly obvious that some players have the edge from set pieces, finding the net just when it's most needed.

Who would you want standing over the ball when your team gets a chance at a shot at goal?

We have picked out the five most successful free-kick takers so far this season:

5. Leandro Bacuna (Aston Villa - 2 Goals)

When winger Leandro Bacuna stepped up to a 20-yard free kick against Man City back in September, we can all admit there was never a huge sense of promise. The majority of us knew very little about Villa’s summer signing.

But we were shocked when Bacuna curled the ball perfectly into the top corner, and 11 days versus Cardiff later Bacuna repeated the feat; a spectacular swerving strike from 30 yards that left Marshall with no chance. With Bacuna only 22 years old, Villa could be onto a free-kick specialist here…

4. Leighton Baines (Everton - 2 Goals)

Baines will be known as a free-kick specialist forever after his 35-yard wonder strike last season against Newcastle. This season he has scored two free kicks, but what makes this incredible is that they were both in one match, against West Ham.

Both were from around 25-yards out; the first swerved into the far top corner, the second in off the near post. If this doesn’t prove Baines as a dead ball master I don’t know what will.

3. Wayne Rooney (Manchester United - 3 Goals)

Back in September, Wayne Rooney struck three free kicks in three consecutive league games, no mean feat. The first was a dipping curler against Crystal Palace, the second a stunning top corner effort in their 4-1 defeat to Man City, the third an intended cross against West Brom that was allowed to go all the way. He has a history of scoring free kicks, and shows no sign of slowing down.

2. Luis Suarez (Liverpool - 3 Goals)

Suarez has a distinctly difficult technique that allows him to combine physics-defying curve, thunderous power and deadly accuracy. He opened his account for the season with a low free kick in the derby against Everton that swerved round the wall, scored another curving thunderbolt in his four-goal haul against Norwich and recently he produced the best of the lot; a simply perfect strike against Hull.

1. Yaya Toure (Manchester City - 4 Goals)

This comes as a surprise; Toure has never been famous for dead ball quality, but this season he has been simply superb from Free Kicks. He hit the first goal on the first day against Newcastle; a sumptuous effort swerving inside the near post. He repeated the feat against Hull, his effort perfectly placed above the head of James Chester and in off the bar.

His kick in the 7-0 thrashing of Norwich was identical to the first, and any doubters were silenced on a Boxing Day match against Fulham, when Toure’s swerving, dipping strike flew in off the bar. On current form he is the best free-kick taker in the world.

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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