Top five: Super subs

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With the clock ticking away, and the game in the balance, every manager wants to call on a super sub.

Able to change a match in an instant, these bench-warming assassins lie in wait, biding their time until the last 20 minutes, before their manager lets them loose on an unsuspecting opponent.

Cesc Fabregas recently stated he didn't know what a great substitute is. Having become frustrated with life on the Barcelona bench, the Spaniard revealed his unhappiness, but he'd do well to take note of these five great impact subs.

The best exponent of the art was undoubtedly Ole Gunnar Solskjaer - the Manchester United forward the ultimate game-winning substitute.

But he wasn't the only one. GMF looks back at some of the best super subs in recent football history.

Michael Owen - Real Madrid

Owen insists he wants first-team football at Stoke, but the former-United striker made his name as an impact substitute at Real Madrid, registering the highest ratio of goals to minutes played in La Liga in 2004. That reputation was cemented at Manchester United, thanks largely to his injury-time winner against Manchester City in a dramatic 4-3 win.


Tore Andre Flo - Chelsea

The Chelsea striker was excellent from the bench under Gianluca Vialli, but staggeringly average when given the start. The Norwegian frontman become something of a cult hero at Stamford Bridge though, with a number of late winners from the bench.


Thierry Henry - Barcelona & Arsenal

Limited first-team opportunities at Barcelona restricted Henry's contributions at the Nou Camp, and the Frenchman's return to Arsenal on loan from New York Red Bulls was defined by his goals from the bench, most crucially against Leeds in the FA Cup.


David Fairclough - Liverpool

The original super-sub. Liverpool midfielder David Fairclough scored 35 goals in the last half-hour of matches, and 18 of his 55 goals came from the bench.


Ole Gunnar Solskjaer - Manchester United

The "baby-faced assassin" was the greatest super sub of all-time, scoring more than 25 goals off the bench. But he will always be remembered for his Champions League-winning goal, deep into injury time against Bayern Munich, securing a famous treble for United.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
Michael Owen
Premier League
Manchester United
Tore Andre Flo
Thierry Henry

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