20 Best Goals of the 2013/14 Premier League Season
According to Opta, there were 1,052 Premier League goals scored in 2013/14, which is an average of 2.77 per game. Even though Manchester City and Liverpool both scored more than 100 times each, this is the lowest tally of goals since the 2008/09 season.
Yet it's not about quantity, it's all about quality. Here, I've attempted to rank the top 20 goals of the season, which roughly accounts for the finest two per cent of strikes in the campaign.
Take a look and leave your suggestions for the most beautiful 2013/14 goals in the comments.
20. Oussama Assaidi vs. Chelsea, December 2013
Chelsea fans wondering where it all went wrong this season will look back at December's visit to the Britannia and see just one instance where a title-contending side shouldn't have dropped points.
Stoke were drawing 2-2 with the Blues in the 90th minute when substitute winger Oussama Assaidi, on loan from Liverpool, earned the home side an unlikely victory with a superb long-range strike.
“I said he had to be ready if called on to make an impact, but I hadn’t anticipated such an impact,” said manager Mark Hughes to The Independent after the game.
19. Jesus Navas vs. Tottenham, November 2014
When Tottenham visited Eastlands in November, they were handed a 6-0 drubbing—their worst league defeat in 18 years by the title-chasing Citizens.
Jesus Navas needed only 13 seconds to open his account that day, latching onto a spilled Sergio Aguero shot to deliver an inch-perfect chip over Hugo Lloris.
The Spaniard's superb goal set the tone for a tough afternoon for the French keeper.
18. Leighton Baines vs. West Ham, September 2013 #1
Everton earned three points in a thrilling 3-2 victory over West Ham at Upton Park in September, in a game inspired by Leighton Baines.
The English left-back brought the scores level at 1-1 in the 62nd minute with a powerful free kick that Jussi Jaaskelainen wasn't able to get a hand to.
17. Leighton Baines vs. West Ham, September 2013 #2
In the aforementioned 3-2 victory over West Ham, Everton's Leighton Baines wasn't content with scoring one amazing free kick.
Not long after his first dead ball, a Mark Noble penalty put the Hammers back in front. With seven minutes to go, Baines took another free kick, this time curling the ball into the other corner of Jaaskelainen's goal, with a shot that tucked in off the post.
Romelu Lukaku then put the icing on the Toffees' cake two minutes later with the winner.
16. Aaron Ramsey vs. Norwich, May 2014
When Aaron Ramsey returned from his lengthy injury spell last month, it was quite apparent how much Arsenal had missed him.
The Welsh midfielder scored one of his finest goals on Sunday, helping to confirm Norwich's relegation in the process.
When Olivier Giroud chipped a ball towards Ramsey in the 53rd minute, Ramsey responded with an incredible volley that looped over goalkeeper John Ruddy. It was his 17th goal of the season and easily one of the finest scored in the league this year.
15. Luis Suarez vs. Norwich, December 2013 #1
Luis Suarez is something of a Norwich specialist. In six appearances against them, the Uruguayan has bagged 12 goals—and he didn't even score in the first game.
In December, Suarez helped cement his Golden Boot with four goals against the Canaries, the third of which came in the 35th minute.
Picking up the ball just inside the Norwich half, Suarez charged towards goal and—in a move reminiscent of Paul Gascoigne's goal against Scotland at Euro 96—he flicked it over Leroy Fer before slicing home a powerful half-volley.
See it at [2.42] in this clip.
14. Yaya Toure vs. Aston Villa, May 2014
One gets the impression that Yaya Toure could burst through the midfield and head towards goal like a steam train at any point in any game.
This is exactly what the talismanic Ivorian did in last week's crunch match with Aston Villa. We've seen Toure do this before, but to show such determination and power in the third minute of extra time on a soaking-wet pitch in the club's penultimate game shows why he is the player of the season for many Premier League fans.
13. Daniel Sturridge vs. Everton, January 2014
Everton were completely taken apart at Anfield in January, thanks in part to striker Daniel Sturridge, who scored twice in three minutes in the first half.
Running on from a long ball from Kolo Toure, the England striker beat the Toffees' offside trap and then beat goalkeeper Tim Howard with a perfectly timed lob.
The speed with which this move occurs and Sturridge's awareness of the keeper's position are astounding.
12. Ross Barkley vs. Manchester City, May 2014
Last weekend, Everton found themselves in a precarious position: They were competing for an outside chance of earning Champions League football, but a victory over Manchester City would have helped their "friends" on the other side of Stanley Park win the title.
City won 3-2, but precocious midfielder Ross Barkley got the Toffees off to a fantastic start with an incredible one-touch strike from the edge of the box.
11. Robin Van Persie vs. Swansea, August 2013
David Moyes' Manchester United career got off to a dream start on the opening day of the season with a 4-1 win at Swansea.
Robin van Persie scored twice that day, with his first proving to be a Goal of the Month-worthy acrobatic effort.
Controlling a looping Ryan Giggs through ball on his chest, the Dutchman took the Swans defence by surprise by converting with a powerful overhead kick.
If only the high point of Moyes' United career hadn't come so soon.
10. Sandro vs. Manchester Utd, December 2013
Tottenham's Sandro doesn't score too often—particularly when Tim Sherwood doesn't give him the time of day—but when he does find the net, it can be very special.
The crazy Brazilian thought he has handed Spurs a morale-boosting win over Manchester United at White Hart Lane in December when he picked up the ball, dribbled around Tom Cleverley and rifled off an unstoppable 25-yard shot.
A subsequent Wayne Rooney penalty meant the teams eventually split the points, but Sandro walked away with one of the goals of the season.
9. Wayne Rooney vs. West Ham, March 2014
Wayne Rooney bagged his 212th Manchester United goal in style at Upton Park in March.
Spotting Hammers keeper Adrian off of his line, the England striker sent an audacious lob into the back of the net from just inside the halfway line.
The goal was reminiscent of David Beckham's career-launching lob against Wimbledon in 1996. Coincidentally, Beckham was watching this performance from the stands.
"It was just instinct. I turned, had a quick look and saw the keeper off the line," said Rooney after the game. "I’ve tried it many times and thankfully it went in."
8. Luis Suarez vs. Norwich, December 2013 #2
One of Suarez's four goals from Norwich's unhappy visit to Anfield in December featured earlier in this list, but his finest goal that evening was his first.
A mistake by Leroy Fer—who was a stooge in Suarez's aforementioned strike—led to the Uruguayan picking up the ball from around 40 yards out and looping a perfect lob over John Ruddy, who wasn't even particularly far off his line.
7. Jordon Mutch vs. Fulham, September 2013
Cardiff were in search of their first away win in the top flight in 52 years when they visited Craven Cottage at the end of September, and they left West London with three points thanks to an incredible injury-time winner from Jordon Mutch.
In the 93rd minute, the English midfielder connected with a hopeful long punt from goalkeeper David Marshall and stunned the home crowd with a left-foot drive that David Stockdale had little chance of seeing, let alone saving.
6. Tomas Rosicky vs. Sunderland, February 2014
As you will see later in this countdown, Arsenal have scored a few very impressive team goals this season.
In February, Tomas Rosicky broke his duck for the season with the help of Jack Wilshere and Olivier Giroud, who collectively threaded together five tight passes to unlock Sunderland's defence and beat goalkeeper Keiren Westwood.
The marvellous goal put the Gunners 3-0 ahead in their eventual 4-1 victory.
5. Pablo Osvaldo vs. Manchester City, December 2013
In the first few months of the season, Manchester City were a bit like Guinness: They were fantastic at home but didn't travel well.
The Citizens were held to a score draw by Southampton in December thanks to an incredible strike from Dani Osvaldo.
The Saints record signing—who departed the south coast after his fiery behaviour led to a training-ground fight—picked up the ball on the left flank, left Vincent Kompany on his backside, effortlessly moved past Pablo Zabaleta and curled the ball beyond the expansive reach of the Premier League's tallest goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon.
4. Jonjo Shelvey vs. Aston Villa, April 2014
Swansea helped seal their survival with a 4-1 win against Aston Villa on April 26th, in which Jonjo Shelvey scored the best goal of his career.
A poor pass from Ron Vlaar was picked up by the former Liverpool star just inside the centre circle, who proceeded to punish Villa keeper Brad Guzan for poor positioning by blasting the ball into the top right corner.
BBC Match of the Day viewers deemed it to be April's Goal of the Month by a margin of 43.1 per cent.
3. Seamus Coleman vs. Soton, December 2013
Seamus Coleman fought off stiff competition for Everton's Player of the Year Award thanks to performances such as the one against Southampton at the end of 2013.
The Irishman opened the scoring at Goodison after nine minutes by charging all the way down the right flank, beating James Ward-Prowse and firing a blistering shot past Kelvin Davis.
Not bad for a right-back.
2. Jack Wilshere vs. Norwich, October 2013
In the heady days of October, when tiki-taka beauty was not yet replaced by bus parking and counter attacking as the tactic de rigueur, Arsenal scored a stunning goal from an incredible one-touch passing play.
The goal was praised as one of the finest team efforts ever seen in the Premier League, with Mesut Ozil claiming it was like his teammates were "playing PlayStation."
1. Pajtim Kasami vs. Crystal Palace, October 2013
In October, Fulham pulled off a 4-1 victory at Selhurst Park to consign a troubled Crystal Palace to their seventh league defeat.
Oh, how the tables turned.
The best goal of the evening—and probably the Cottagers' highlight of the season—was Pajtim Kasami's 19th-minute equaliser, a sweetly struck volley from the corner of the 18-yard box.
The Macedonian collected a long ball from Sascha Riether on his chest, and managed to loop a perfect volley over Julian Speroni, despite very close attention from defender Adrian Mariappa.