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5 high-profile forwards whose finishing has been poor this season

Chelsea striker Timo Werner
Chelsea striker Timo Werner
Shambhu Ajith
FEATURED WRITER
Modified 28 Apr 2021

These forwards seemed to have forgotten their striking boots at home before joining their sides for the season.

Being a forward is perhaps the most exciting and exhilarating role to play on a football field. After all, the objective in football is to put the ball in the back of the net and the forwards are the ones who are primarily tasked with executing that.

The role of the forward requires a skillset replete with good ball control, technique and most importantly composure and finishing. It's not enough for an individual to have silky feet or electrifying pace. He needs to be able to keep his head when an opportunity presents itself and apply the right finishing touches to put the ball in the back of the net.

Without further ado, let's take a look at five high-profile forwards whose finishing has been poor this season.


#5 Raheem Sterling - Manchester City

Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur - Carabao Cup Final
Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur - Carabao Cup Final

Manchester City have been running riot this season and it is particularly commendable as they haven't been able to rely much on their forwards for goals. Sergio Aguero has missed the majority of the season through injury. Gabriel Jesus has not exactly been prolific and neither has Raheem Sterling.

Sterling's finishing has always been suspect and in fact, it is the one thing that has arguably held him back from being one of the best players in the world. Granted, Sterling has had seasons where he has been prolific in front of goal. But this campaign, he has been quite hit or miss.

He is awkwardly poor in one-on-one situations and always takes too much time before getting the shot away. His shooting arsenal is quite limited and apart from side-foot finishes, you won't see much there.

Sterling squandered some big chances against the likes of Chelsea, West Ham United, West Bromwich Albion and Leeds United to name a few, and his nine goals from 27 Premier League appearances is a little flattering for his ability in front of goal.

#4 Sadio Mane - Liverpool

Real Madrid v Liverpool FC - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final: Leg One
Real Madrid v Liverpool FC - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final: Leg One

Sadio Mane had scored 20+ goals across all competitions in each of his last three seasons at Liverpool. As such, it is frustrating to see the Senegalese international act like he has lost the knack for it this term.

Liverpool's injury woes are pertinent to their poor Premier League title defense and their having a forgettable season, but the fact that their forwards, apart from Mohamed Salah, are having their worst season yet shouldn't be overlooked.

Mane has scored just eight goals in the Premier League from 30 appearances and looks a shadow of his former self. The fearsome trio of Mane, Firmino and Salah look pretty tame right now. More than anything, Mane seems to have lost a lot of confidence.

In past seasons, he wouldn't have any qualms about putting his laces through the ball and smashing it home when presented with the opportunity. But this season, even when he has been played through on goal, the 29-year-old tries to play it safe and has often rolls the ball into the goalkeeper's hands.

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Published 28 Apr 2021
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