11 Best Penalty Takers in Premier League History

Greg Probert@@GregProbertFWContributor IIApril 11, 2012

11 Best Penalty Takers in Premier League History

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    To convert regularly from 12 yards takes nerves of steel.

    It looks easy, but under pressure your bottle can go and your focus waver. 

    Whether they are placed in the corner, smashed down the middle or chipped into the net, a good penalty taker is very important in a successful season.

    Who were the Premier League's best penalty takers and who will go down as the boss from 12 yards?

Dennis Bergkamp

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    His nickname says it all. "The Iceman" was cool, calm and clinical in front of goal and everywhere on the pitch.

    He oozed class, and although he wasn't especially renowned for being a penalty king, the majority of the penalties he did take were taken as if there were no pressure at all.

    He didn't go for the fireworks and smash it home, he placed it in the corner just inches from the goalkeeper's reach.

Julian Dicks

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    Julian "The Terminator" Dicks was a hard-tackling full-back who most notably played for West Ham.

    When he wasn't flying in to crunching tackles or getting sent off, he was using his powerful left foot to take set-pieces.

    From the penalty spot, he wouldn't mess about and smashed the ball home every time and even if the keeper got a hand to it, there was little he could do to stop it.

Denis Irwin

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    Another full-back, Denis Irwin was an Irish defender who enjoyed many successful years at Manchester United.

    Known for his incredible accuracy from set-pieces, United utilised this and many of his 22 goals came from the penalty spot.

    During his Manchester United career, he only missed once from 12 yards, but he did score the rebound.

Steven Gerrard

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    The heart and soul of Liverpool FC is famous for his powerful shot.

    He has scored countless important goals for the Reds and he rarely lets them down in penalty situations.

    His usual technique is to blast the ball in to the top corner, but to avoid being too predictable, he will slot a low one into the bottom corner.

Graham Alexander

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    Graham Alexander wasn't in the Premier League for very long, but his penalty taking record is so impressive he had to be included.

    Missing only a handful from over 70 penalties, he was a pretty safe bet to convert from the spot.

    His right foot is incredibly accurate and he usually slotted the ball with the side of his foot beyond the keepers reach.

Gary McAllister

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    The lanky Scottish midfielder travelled around a bit and played for many clubs, but he will be remembered by all of them as someone with incredible accuracy with the side of his foot.

    He used this accurate weapon when taking penalties, with a cool finish placed usually to the keepers right hand side.

    He did famously miss a crucial penalty for Scotland in Euro 96, but that was against England, so I'll let him off.

Cristiano Ronaldo

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    Ronaldo is one of the best footballers in the world at the moment, and in some people's opinion, he is the very best.

    When Manchester captured his signature in 2003, nobody had any idea about how good this player would become, but he became extremely good.

    An all-round quality player, his penalties were no different. He has missed only four from 38 during his career, and has only missed one for his current club, Real Madrid.

Eric Cantona

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    From his upturned collars, strange quotes and karate kicking fans, Eric Cantona will not be forgotten easily.

    One of the most talented players ever to grace to the Premier League, he played the game with skill and flair.

    His penalties were taken in a similar way, he made it look easy and put the ball wherever he wanted.

    Except of his course his infamous chip that he embarrassingly spooned over the bar, but it wouldn't be Cantona without something outrageous happening.

Frank Lampard

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    I don't think there will be any arguments about Lampard being on this list. He has missed a few but his record is still very impressive.

    Whether it's smashed down the middle of the goal or in the corner, his penalties are always hit with real power.

    The most prolific goalscoring midfielder in Premier League history, his penalties have added a sizable chunk to his goal tally.

Alan Shearer

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    Alan Shearer has legendary status in England for his goalscoring prowess and it is no different from the penalty spot.

    The one-time transfer record holder was clinical in and around the 18-yard box.

    With a shot that could rip the net clean off, his penalties were often buried in the roof of the net way out of the goalkeeper's reach.

Matt Le Tissier

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    Known as "Le God" at Southampton, Matt Le Tissier is one of the most technically gifted English footballers of all time.

    Apart from his amazing goal collection, he has a legendary status as a penalty king.

    Missing only one from 49 kicks, there is nobody else that is more worthy to top this list.

    He is now a successful pundit, but let's hope the next England manager can bring him in to teach the current squad a thing or two from 12 yards.


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