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It can be difficult to determine what the most important aspect of a forward's game is, given that the front two or three players' roles have become so varied and involve a lot of tactical discipline as well as attacking flair.
What is clear is that it's not just goals which matter—but they are a pretty important place to start, so all candidates' goalscoring record for the season was taken into account, both as a raw number and also as a per 90 minutes statistic. This allows differentiation between those who are regularly subbed off, play as an impact substitute or have missed parts of the season for any reason.
However, as this ranking aims to determine the most effective forwards overall, other areas are taken into account too.
While the full formula won't be revealed, key performance indicators such as shot accuracy, chance creation and total minutes played were all analysed, given a weighting and totalled to determine final player ranking.
Chance creation is preferable to use over assists because once the chance has indeed been created, the forward in question has already done his job, and he has no control over a team-mate skying an easy chance or a goalkeeper pulling off a worldie save.
Finally, all forwards were taken into account, including out-and-out strikers, second strikers, wide forwards and deep centre-forwards. The criteria for selection was that they must have scored at least nine league goals for the season and play in either the Premier League, Ligue 1, the Bundesliga, Serie A or La Liga.
Statistics are for league play during the 2013-14 season only and are used from Squawka.com, Whoscored.com and transfermarkt.co.uk.