There are few better sights in football than a free-kick specialist setting up the ball in position, scanning the wall and eventually connecting impeccably to send the ball flying into the back of the net. Luckily, the Premier League has had its fair share.
It doesn’t matter if it's Lionel Messi’s beautifully-placed near post effort or Roberto Carlos’ physics-defying stunner from 30 yards, free-kicks are the most beautiful art form in football.
The Premier League has had plenty of legendary free-kick takers over the years. Scratch that, the league has witnessed arguably the best free-kick takers in the history of the sport.
So, let us dive in and take a look at the 10 best free-kick takers in the Premier League history.
#10 Juan Mata (8 free-kicks)
Juan Mata has scored eight free-kick goals in the Premier League while playing for two powerhouses of English football, Manchester United and Chelsea. Despite that, the Spaniard remains one of the most underrated free-kick takers in the league's history.
Mata’s simple two-step run-up and perfect connection with the inside of his left foot leaves goalkeepers rooted to the spot more often than not. And the wall? It hardly bothers him!
Most of Mata’s eight free-kick goals have come for United, but he did showcase his dead-ball magic against the Red Devils back in the 2012-13 season during his time with Chelsea.
#9 Christian Eriksen (8 free-kicks)
In the last decade, there have been few better playmakers than Christian Eriksen in the Premier League. And while you can make fun of the former Tottenham Hotspur star for finding the first man at corners, no one can argue his brilliance from free-kicks.
The Danish international, like Mata, also scored eight free-kick goals for Spurs. The angle has never been a problem for Eriksen, as the right-footed midfielder has commonly scored from both the right and left side of the pitch.
#8 Ian Harte (10 free-kicks)
Wing-backs standing over the free-kick is no longer a surprising image thanks to the likes of Trent Alexander-Arnold and Marcos Alonso. But to this date, there are not many who can match the standards set by Leeds United’s Ian Harte in the '90s.
The left-back used to wear 6.5 instead of 8.5 boots, two sizes small to help him with free-kicks, and it sure did. Harte scored some of the most memorable dead-ball goals with Leeds.
Harte went on to score 10 free-kick goals in the Premier League during his time at Elland Road.