20 Best Penalty Takers in World Football History

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20 Best Penalty Takers in World Football History
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Arguably the most nervy of all moments during the course of a given soccer match, the penalty shot is psychological warfare: Two men, one ball and stakes that do not get much greater in soccer, a clear chance to score a goal.

Over the years of world football history, penalties and missed penalties have provided memories littered with controversial and dramatic moments.  A penalty is supposed to be finished at the professional level: period.  Anything else is a failure. 

Such a task should only be required of players made with the iciest of veins.

For goalkeepers, a penalty save is a way to distinguish themselves, shift momentum in a match and let whichever defender conceded off the hook for his mistake.

This slideshow looks at some of the best penalty kick takers in the history of world football.  There is no overall empirical method employed for this list.  And while some of the ranking is based around numerical penalty success, there are other variables considered and gathered from watching  penalties and researching style and stakes. 

As always, no list is 100 percent correct, so feel free to provide any comments about who was missed, who should be higher or who should be lower.

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