The 10 Most Satisfying Shooting Techniques in the Premier League

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Mason Greenwood’s strike against Aston Villa got us thinking | SHAUN BOTTERILL/Getty Images

When Mason Greenwood fired in a rocket against Aston Villa this week, there was a question on the tip of our tongues. But it wasn’t ‘will Manchester United be title challengers next season?’ nor was it ‘is Mason Greenwood the best teenager we’ve seen in a decade?’ (‘no’ and ‘probably’ if you were wondering).

No, we’re all football hipsters at 90min, so the question was ‘who has the most aesthetically pleasing shooting technique in the league at present?’

And since you’re dying to know the answer, here’s our top ten.

Mesut Ozi, Mesut OzilMesut Ozi, Mesut Ozil
Ozil’s ‘chop shot’ is iconic | Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

We haven’t seen Mesut Ozil at his best for as long as any of us can remember, but technically speaking, he’s still a Premier League player. And, crucially, he’s a Premier League player with a truly unique, signature style of finish.

Over the years the Arsenal star has patented the ‘chop shot’ or ‘bounce shot’ where he drives his instep into the top of the ball, creating a strange, unpredictable dink that has bamboozled keepers since day one.

See here for a few examples, and an explanation from the man himself on how he does it.

Gylifi SigurdssonGylifi Sigurdsson
Sigurdsson is one of the cleanest finishers the Premier League has seen | Chloe Knott – Danehouse/Getty Images

Sigurdsson doesn’t score as many these days, but whenever he does, they tend to be worth a look.

With Swansea, the Iceland international made a name for himself with his signature blend of finesse and power, becoming an expert at finding the top corner.

His goal against Leicester for Everton last season, spinning James Maddison then dipping one right into Kasper Schmeichel’s top right hand corner, is one of the best finishes the Premier League has seen in recent years.

Ruben NevesRuben Neves
Neves loves a screamer | Sam Bagnall – AMA/Getty Images

Passing the ball into the back of the net is something of a cliche, but it’s one Ruben Neves seems to have taken to heart.

The Portuguese midfielder has 6 Premier League goals to his name, almost all of which have come from outside the box, where he has perfected the art of using his instep to force the ball past the keeper – usually from an obscene distance.

Harry KaneHarry Kane
Kane slots an effort past Lukasz Fabianski | Julian Finney/Getty Images

Kane’s flawless penalty technique would be enough to earn him a place on its own, but it doesn’t need to – because it’s not quite impressive as when he laces the ball past the keeper in open play.

The England captain’s power and precision is never epitomised more than when he lines up a strike and releases a pristine finish to devastating effect.

Leondro TrossardLeondro Trossard
Trossard hits the back of the net against Liverpool | Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

When Trossard ripped the net off its’ frame against Liverpool, what had previously been a quietly impressive, under-the-radar debut season came to the forefront.

The technique he showed with an exquisite, unstoppable half-volley – not quite in the corner but with enough power on it that it would have gone through Alisson even if he was right behind it – was not unlike his debut goal against West Ham.

Brighton are onto something here.

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Maddison strikes at goal against Newcastle | LINDSEY PARNABY/Getty Images

Maddison’s picture-perfect technique was on show as far back as 2016, when he banged in long-range winner against Rangers to secure a famous win for Aberdeen.

As his obscene finish against Newcastle earlier this season shows, he doesn’t need a dead-ball situation to hammer it in either.

James Ward-ProwseJames Ward-Prowse
Ward-Prowse celebrates scoring against Watford | Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

Other than perhaps Philippe Coutinho, there hasn’t been a player in the Premier League capable of striking the ball from 25 yards in a central position, and landing it straight in the top corner.

Getting enough spin and direction on the ball to score from the same position Ward-Prowse did against Tottenham takes some doing, but he has a unique knack for it.

FabinhoFabinho
Fabinho’s powerful low effort against Crystal Palace | Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

When Fabinho thundered one in against Manchester City earlier in the season – putting Liverpool’s title challenge well and truly on the rails – it was our first real hint of his ability to hammer them in from range.

When he did it again against Crystal Palace post-lockdown, he proved it was no one off. The guy knows how to hit a ball.

His signature style – low, powerful, and complete with a satisfying clink upon hitting the net – might well be a fixture at Anfield in the years to come.

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Greenwood’s strike against Villa kick-started this list | OLI SCARFF/Getty Images

There’s something about Greenwood’s chosen brand of finish that is particularly nice to watch. While many in his position – a teenager breaking onto the scene at one of the biggest clubs in the world – might opt to do things with a bit more nuance and subtlety, Greenwood gets his head down and hammers it – to devastating effect.

When he’s involved, there’s rarely any passing into the back of the net. His strike against Villa, absurdly powerful and rising all the way, was perhaps the best of his 18 this season, but it looks as if there will be plenty more to come.

Kevin De BruyneKevin De Bruyne
De Bruyne scores from the spot against Liverpool | Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images

You’d be hard pushed to find a player in the world (other than those two) who strikes a ball cleaner than Kevin De Bruyne.

His goalscoring is only one facet of his game, which is absurd considering he’s hitting one every three games in the league, but there is no more pleasing sight than when he lashes the ball into the back of the net with his trademark ruthless finish.

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Assessing Where Luka Jovic Should Go This Summer

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Luka Jovic has flopped since completing a big money move to Real Madrid in the summer | DeFodi Images/Getty Images

To say that Luke Jovic’s inaugural season at Real Madrid has been underwhelming would be an understatement.

Since completing a €60m move from Eintracht Frankfurt in the summer, Jovic’s Real career has lurched from one disaster to the next. He has returned just two goals, two assists and has been so disappointing that Los Blancos are now set to cut their losses and try and move him on as quickly as possible.

Although he has struggled in La Liga, Jovic’s performances lit up the Bundesliga during the 2018/19 season and he would have no shortage of suitors.

But where’s best for him to reignite his career? 90min analysed his options to find out.

Frank LampardFrank Lampard
Frank Lampard may want to bring Luka Jovic to Stamford Bridge | James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images

Despite badly requiring a defensive makeover, Chelsea continue to be linked with every playmaker and forward under the sun.

Frank Lampard has already added Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner to bolster his already impressive offensive ranks. Olivier Giroud, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Willian, Tammy Abraham and the two new arrivals represent one of the deepest forward lines in the world, which begs the questions: why on earth would they go after Jovic as well?

On paper this seems massively unlikely but then again, Lampard is seemingly obsessed with stockpiling forwards like they’re going out of fashion so let’s not rule it out entirely…

Likelihood Rating: 2/10

Mikel ArtetaMikel Arteta
Mikel Arteta maye be put off signing Jovic by his perceived attitude problems | Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

There’s a lot of variables to pick apart in this particular rumour. Arsenal moving for Jovic obviously depends on whether Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang remain at the club – and both of those situations remain uncertain.

Even if one of the Gunners’ star forwards depart, big questions remain over whether the Croatian fits Mikel Arteta’s personality profile.

The Spaniard’s treatment of Matteo Guendouzi and Mesut Ozil suggests that he has little time for ‘negative influences’ in the dressing room. Jovic’s history of troubling behaviour may qualify him for this description, lowering the chances of the move.

There’s also an issue of price. Real want to recoup as much of their hefty investment as possible and reports suggest that Arsenal will not possess this sort of financial firepower unless they rake in some money through player sales.

Likelihood Rating: 3/10

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Jose Mourinho is thought to be planning a summer rebuild at Tottenham | OLI SCARFF/Getty Images

Tottenham are in dire need of a striker to take some of the goalscoring burden off Harry Kane. Any side with Champions League ambitions should not be fielding Lucas Moura up front under any circumstances.

This is where Jovic could come in.

One roadblock to the potential transfer could be the 22-year-old’s reluctance to come in a play second fiddle to Kane.

There is a small chance of the pair both being accommodated but this could be challenging. Mourinho’s is adversed to fielding two strikers and any compromise would likely resulting in Jovic being shoehorned in out wide, a role he has little experience in.

Likelihood Rating: 5/10

Ralf RangnickRalf Rangnick
Ralf Rangnick will be taking over at Milan next season | TF-Images/Getty Images

Haven’t you heard? Milan are on their way back.

Recent victories over title hunting pair Lazio and Juventus have sparked hopes that the Rossoneri could be genuine title contenders next season. Jovic could be the statement signing that incoming manager Ralf Rangnick needs to push them to new heights.

The case for recruiting the wantaway Real man is strengthened by the fact that Zlatan Ibrahimovic is… well, 38-years-old and surely running on fumes at this point of his career.

Even if the Swede does get offered a short term extension, an incoming Jovic would be the main man for Milan. He’d get to work with an exciting coach in Rangnick, he’ll be reunited with compatriot and former Frankfurt star Ante Rebic and as his time in Germany showed, he looks great in black and red stripes.

What’s not to love?

Likelihood Rating: 8/10

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The Premier League Big Six’s Youth Prospects – Ranked

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Mason Greenwood is now a regular at Manchester United | Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

All of the so-called ‘big six’ – Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur – want to be the best now (even if some teams aren’t exactly showing that these days *cough* Spurs *cough*), but there’s also a focus on being the best in the future.

Now more than ever, with finances tight and squads needing strengthened, having the best youngsters coming through is paramount.

Let’s take a look at how well stocked each of the ‘big six’ are for under 21 stars…

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Japhet Tanganga made his Premier League debut under Jose Mourinho | ANP Sport/Getty Images

Tottenham’s youth development has stalled somewhat in recent years. Mauricio Pochettino was famed for putting his faith in young players, but that trend has slowly disappeared.

In the first team, Japhet Tanganga and Ryan Sessegnon have both shown signs of promise but are both still waiting for a real breakthrough, while the criminally underused Oliver Skipp is still waiting in the wings.

There are a few exciting talents in Spurs’ academy, with Troy Parrott leading the charge. Dennis Cirkin, Malachi Walcott and Jamie Bowden are all worth mentioning, but there’s a lot of unproven talents with a lot of work left to do, and so they rank bottom of the big six..

Phil FodenPhil Foden
Phil Foden is quickly becoming a real star | Visionhaus/Getty Images

Phil Foden is flying the flag for Manchester City’s expensive youth system, and rightly so. The midfielder is an outstanding talent who looks set for a lengthy career at the top of the sport.

He’s the only young star regularly in the first team at the minute, though Eric García is knocking on the door. Midfielder Tommy Doyle could soon add his name to that list, but the majority of City’s top prospects were bought in their recent shopping spree.

Yan Couto, Claudio Gomes, Adrián Bernabé, Taylor Harwood-Bellis and Jayden Braaf are all worth keeping an eye on in the near future. Ben Knight, Liam Delap and Samuel Edozie are just three of several Under-18 stars of whom there are high expectations but a lot of unknown quantities.

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Trent Alexander-Arnold has been a core part of Liverpool’s recent success | Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images

In Trent Alexander-Arnold, Liverpool have one of the most exciting 21-year-old players on the entire planet, and while he’s the only youngster of his kind regularly in Jürgen Klopp’s lineup, there could be plenty more next season.

Curtis Jones and Neco Williams have both made a real impact already and will hope for more minutes going forward, while the Premier League’s youngest ever player Harvey Elliott is also expected to join in the fun.

Rhian Brewster could also see minutes after scoring for fun on loan at Swansea.

Dutch duo Sepp van den Berg and Ki-Jana Hoever are both higly rated and have shone in cup outings, while expectations are high for homegrown duo Layton Stewart and Leighton Stewart.

Mason GreenwoodMason Greenwood
Mason Greenwood is enjoying an outstanding breakthrough year | Pool/Getty Images

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has not been afraid of turning to the academy this season, and by promoting both Mason Greenwood and Brandon Williams, he has made Manchester United immeasurably better.

There’s always chances to impress on offer at Old Trafford, and next season, the likes of Teden Mengi, Ethan Laird, James Garner and the very highly rated Hannibal Mejbri will all be scrapping for any available minutes with the seniors. All four look ready as is.

Tahith Chong and Noam Emeran will be keen to see some minutes too, and let’s not forget that Diogo Dalot is still just 21. Before his injury, the young right-back was seen as one of Europe’s finest at his age.

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Bukayo Saka has been a shining light in Arsenal’s mixed season | Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

With his futute in doubt, Mattéo Guendouzi’s status as Arsenal’s top youngster is now being passed between Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli, who have helped steer Arsenal through their tough season.

Reiss Nelson, Joe Willock and Eddie Nketiah are also first-team regulars, while William Saliba is expected to be when he finally arrives at the Emirates this summer.

Emile Smith Rowe has done enough out on loan with Huddersfield to earn a spot in the first team next year, with Tyreece John-Jules and Robbie Burton not far behind.

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Mason Mount has been outstanding all season | Visionhaus/Getty Images

The reason Chelsea sit atop this list is that several of their top prospects are already first-team stars for club and country. Mason Mount and Callum Hudson-Odoi are England internationals, while Reece James and Billy Gilmour have both been tipped to break through soon enough for England and Scotland respectively. Loanee Ethan Ampadu is a core part of the Wales setup.

Behind them, there are high hopes for Tino Anjorin, Ian Maatsen, Dujon Sterling, Armando Broja and Valentino Livramento, and then you’ve got Lewis Bate and Marc Guehi and even young Charlie Webster all waiting for opportunities.

Oh, and did I forget Christian Pulisic? Still only 21, the USA star has already earned (semi-justifiable) comparisons to Eden Hazard and is expected to become one of the world’s finest.

For more from ​Tom Gott, follow him on ​Twitter!

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Arsenal Join RB Leipzig in Race to Sign Free Agent Malang Sarr

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Free agent defender Malang Sarr | TF-Images/Getty Images

Arsenal have made an approach for free agent Malang Sarr this summer, but will have to fight off competition from RB Leipzig if they are to secure a deal.

The Gunners’ funds are set to be limited this summer and they’ve already wrapped up permanent deals for cheaper alternatives Cedric Soares and Pablo Mari, while David Luiz also signed a one-year extension at the club.

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David Luiz extended his stay in north London by another year | James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images

Thus, free agents will be of particular interest for Mikel Arteta and according to Spanish outlet Marca (via the Express) former OGC Nice defender Sarr has emerged as a potential target after the 21-year-old let his contract run out at the French club.

Sarr is set to be in high demand and has drawn the attention of Julian Nagelsmann’s Leipzig as well as the Gunners, with a whole host of other clubs said to be keen on a deal as well.

Despite his age, the defender has made 119 senior appearances for Nice following his debut in 2016 as a 17-year-old. Sarr appeared 19 times in Ligue 1 this term and his ability to play as part of a back three makes him an intriguing option in the market for Arteta.

The Spaniard has deployed a 3-4-3 as of late and although it remains to be seen whether it’s his desired long-term plan, it’s a system that would make Sarr’s potential acclimatisation phase just a little bit easier after regularly appearing on the left-hand side of a back three under Patrick Vieira.

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Sarr has often been utilised as part of a back three under Patrick Vieira at Nice | YANN COATSALIOU/Getty Images

While still raw with plenty of scope for development, there’s no doubting the France Under-21 international’s talent. His athleticism and proactiveness are admirable, while he’s also a tremendous ball-player.

However, a considerable dip in form this term suggest he’s in desperate need of a new challenge and after seeing the wonders Arteta has worked with a previously calamitous Arsenal defence, north London may well be a wise choice for the young Frenchman.

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Every Manager Who Has Won 200+ Premier League Games – Ranked

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Sir Alex Ferguson is one of the most decorated managers in football history | ANDREW YATES/Getty Images

Following Tottenham’s win over Everton, Jose Mourinho entered a very exclusive club – he became only the fifth manager in history to record 200 Premier League wins.

He reached the milestone in fairly unglamorous fashion, with a Michael Keane own goal sealing a 1-0 win in a game that likely won’t live long in the memories of….well, anyone.

Anyway, here is what the Premier League’s 200 club looks like.

Jose MourinhoJose Mourinho
Mourinho sealed his 200th win against Everton | Michael Regan/Getty Images

Ever since he walked through the door at Chelsea back in 2004, Mourinho has been at the centre of media attention. Whether it be labelling himself “The Special One”, or demanding respect from reporters, the Portuguese has given us some fantastic press conference lines.

His trophy cabinet isn’t too bad either. Mourinho won three Premier League titles over two spells at Chelsea, as well as seven domestic cups at Chelsea and Manchester United.

Perhaps the highlight of his career in England was his first season at Chelsea. Under Mourinho, the Blues hit a then-record 95 points and conceded just 15 goals all season as they won the league title.

Following a mixed spell at Manchester United, Mourinho moved to Tottenham Hotspur to replace Mauricio Pochettino.

David MoyesDavid Moyes
Scotsman Moyes has managed in the Premier League for 15 seasons | Pool/Getty Images

With his reputation blighted by his ill-fated tenures at Manchester United and Sunderland, it is easy to forget that David Moyes was once a highly respected manager in England.

During an 11-year spell at Everton, Moyes won ten Manager of the Month awards, as well as picking up the LMA Manager of the Year award on three separate occasions.

Much like Mourinho, his best season came in 04/05, when he guided the Toffees to a fourth place finish.

Following the recommendation of legendary manager Sir Alex Ferguson, Moyes was appointed as Manchester United manager on a six-year contract. His reign at the Red Devils was short lived however, as he took the then-champions down to seventh place.

After a stint in Spain with Real Sociedad, Moyes returned to England to manage Sunderland, who he was unable to keep in the Premier League.

He has since managed West Ham United on two occasions in 2017 and 2019, replacing Slaven Bilic and Manuel Pellegrini respectively.

Harry RedknappHarry Redknapp
Redknapp is one of English football’s biggest characters | Ben Hoskins/Getty Images

With a managerial career spanning over 30 years, Harry Redknapp has racked up the third most wins as a manager in Premier League history.

Redknapp’s first Premier League job was at West Ham United, where he helped bring through youngsters such as Frank Lampard, Rio Ferdinand, and Joe Cole.

After two stints at Portsmouth, which were separated by a controversial move to south coast rivals Southampton, Redknapp moved to Tottenham Hotspur, where he managed them to a fourth place finish in the 2009/10 season – scooping the Manager of the Season award in the process.

Redknapp’s final Premier League days were at Queens Park Rangers. After failing to save the Hoops from relegation in 2013, Redknapp helped them back into the Premier League via the play-offs a season later. However, he left QPR in February 2015.

Arsene WengerArsene Wenger
Arsene Wenger waves goodbye to Arsenal fans following his last ever Premier League game | Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images

Arsene Wenger joined Arsenal from Japanese club Nagoya Grampus in 1996 as an unknown quantity. 22 years later he would leave the club as a Premier League legend.

Wenger hit the ground running in England winning the Premier League and FA Cup double in just his second season.

With the help of superstar signings such as Thierry Henry and Robert Pires, the Frenchman would go on to win two more Premier League titles and six more FA Cups, making him the most decorated manager in FA Cup history.

The undeniable peak of Wenger’s career was in the 2003/04 season. Under Wenger’s tutelage, Arsenal became the first team to go a full Premier League season without losing a game – a feat that is still yet to be repeated.

However, this was to be Wenger’s last English league title. As the trophies dried up, Wenger became a divisive figure at the Emirates. Nonetheless, he will undoubtedly go down in history as one of the league’s greatest ever managers.

Sir Alex FergusonSir Alex Ferguson
Sir Alex Ferguson wins one of his 13 Premier League titles | Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Considered by many to be the greatest manager of all time, Sir Alex Ferguson has won a staggering 13 Premier League titles in his career – TEN times more than any other manager.

During his 27-year spell at Old Trafford, Ferguson made the Red Devils the most dominant force in England. They were the only side to ever win the Premier League three times in a row, having achieved the feat twice from 1998/99 to 2000/01, and 2006/07 to 2008/09.

The peak of Ferguson’s career came in 1999, when his Manchester United side sealed a historic treble.

After all his years of non-stop success, Manchester United named the north stand at Old Trafford after the Scotsman, as well as building a bronze statue of him at the stadium.

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