Top 10: Most wasteful players in Europe

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Football News

The ability to dribble and to dribble well remains one of the admired skills in football, with a player slaloming between bamboozled defenders at full speed one of the finer sights in the game.

When executed to perfection, a dribble can provide the most mesmerising of moments during a match, and offer the platform to some of the greatest instances the game has ever produced - i.e. Diego Maradona's jaw dropping goal against England in 1986.

Beating a few players and starting an attack is one thing, but keeping the ball within ones grasp and then executing a shot or pass correctly is another, but plenty of pros get themselves in a pickle after their initial lung-busting burst.

Chief among them in Europe's most prominent leagues this season has been Franck Ribery of Bayern Munich, who has been dispossessed an average of 3.4 times in the Bundesliga so far this campaign.

The France international's position at the top of the rankings for most dispossessed, of course, comes from his willingness to take on defenders when receiving the ball, and Bayern often rely on him to exploit the space on the left-flank.

Ribery attempts on average the second most dribbles in Europe, so a significant percentage are always likely to prove unsuccessful, while his pass completion rate when he does decide to release the ball is actually pretty good (86 percent).

The only player above Ribery in terms of average dribbles attempted is Newcastle's Hatem Ben Arfa (4.9) but the Frenchman can boast to have better ball retention skills than his compatriot at Bayern Munich.

Ben Arfa's stats place him fourth in the rankings of most dispossessed in Europe, with the 25-year-old's average of 3.2 less than those of Mainz striker Adam Szalai and Manchester City star Sergio Aguero.

Szalai's has the ignominy of being dispossessed more regularly than he attempts to dribble with the ball, although the giant Hungarian is excelling where it really matters having scored 12 goals and contributed three assists in the Bundesliga this season.

There is little to choose between the next two players in the rankings - Aston Villa winger Charles N'Zogbia and Montpellier's Younes Belhanda - although the latter has a marginally better dribble success rate, while Marco Borriello is guilty of surrendering the ball 3.1 times every game.

The Genoa forward has been equally as at fault as Nice's 12 goal striker Dario Cvitanich, while Sercan Sararer and reported Manchester United target Isco make up the top ten, with an average of 2.9 dispossessions in their respective leagues this season.

1. Frank Ribery - Bayern Munich

Dispossessed per game: 3.4

2. Adam Szalai - Mainz 05

Dispossessed per game: 3.3

3. Sergio Aguero - Manchester City

Dispossessed per game: 3.3

4. Hatem Ben Arfa - Newcastle

Dispossessed per game: 3.2

5. Charles N'Zogbia - Aston Villa

Dispossessed per game: 3.2

6. Younes Belhanda- Montpellier

Dispossessed per game: 3.2

7. Marco Borriello - Genoa

Dispossessed per game: 3.1

8. Dario Cvitanich - Nice

Dispossessed per game: 3.1

9.  Sercan Sararer - Greuther Furth

Dispossessed per game: 2.9

10. Isco - Malaga

Dispossessed per game: 2.9

Stats courtesy of WhoScored.

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