Five La Liga forwards who deserve greater recognition for their exploits this season

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Predators such as Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar and Luis Suarez may all roam Spanish territory, but the 2015/16 campaign in La Liga has proved that the big boys aren't the only ones that defenders should keep a close eye on.

The new 2015 Balon d'Or king, Messi, suffered an injury setback towards the start of the season, allowing his competitive colleagues to gain some pace in the race for the Golden Boot.

Neymar and Suarez both have 15 goals to their name and are joint top scorers in La Liga so far, but a weekend hat-trick for the fully-fit Argentine sees Messi make up lost ground to reach nine goals. 


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In the capital, Real Madrid teammates Ronaldo and Karim Benzema both have 14 goals, whilst Gareth Bale has scored 12 La Liga strikes.

However, there have been other stand-out performers given less recognition since the new season began, so here are five of the best that defenders can't afford to let out of their sight.


Villarreal have consistently flirted with the European places yet failed to sustain a genuine challenge for the La Liga title, but following the summer signing of Cedric Bakambu from Bursaspor, the Yellow Submarines have been given a boost in their title hopes.

The 24-year-old plies his international trade with Yannick Bolasie for the Democratic Republic of Congo so, naturally, he has a few tricks up his sleeve.

And his best trick appears to be his impressive goalscoring record during his debut season, scoring eight goals.

The forward is well built and capable of shrugging off even the strongest of defenders and, as he has proved, isn't afraid to chance his luck in front of goal.


English focus has firmly been placed on Valencia since former Manchester United full-back Gary Neville took over as manager last month, which has brought Paco Alcacer to many's attention. He may be one to watch for in the future, but his inexperience certainly doesn't act as a deterrent to himself in front of goal.

Similar to the aforementioned Bakambu, the Spain international has eight league goals this season.

What makes the 22-year-old that little bit better is his creativity, with Alcacer often turning provider for teammate Daniel Parejo. The two share an excellent partnership, as Real experienced just over a week ago in a dramatic game that ended 2-2.


Eibar are a team who five years ago were playing fourth tier Spanish football; now, they are currently sixth in La Liga, above the likes of Athletic Bilbao, Valencia and Sevilla, and it's all thanks to Borja Baston.

The 23-year-old may not be a hat-trick hero in shining armour for Eibar, but on few occasions has he failed to make the score sheet this season, scoring ten times so far.

But Baston isn't the stereotypical centre forward who feeds off balls into the box. Oh no - this guy can pull a dove out of an empty hat.

Take his absolute rasper from 20 yards during Eibar's 4-0 demolition of Real Betis on January 3, for example. The Spaniard expertly controlled a long ball played over the top and rifled an accurate strike into the top corner. 


Due to the fact these two form one of the most destructive strike partnerships in world football, let alone La Liga, it just wouldn't be right to separate them.

Diego Simeone was without the pair just two years ago, but when he signed Antoine Griezmann from Real Sociedad in 2014, things started to look up for Atletico Madrid as the Frenchman netted 22 league goals.

The 24-year-old has ten strikes to his name this time around and appears capable of surpassing his previous tally, with summer addition Luciano Vietto providing chance after chance for Griezmann.

The pair already have a sound understanding in how the other plays; simple, basic, one-touch passing and moving has torn defenders to pieces this season, hence why Atletico top La Liga after 19 games.

If the duo can continue their obliterating form, there's no reason why Simeone can't lead his side to reclaiming the league title. 

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