Penalties have always been a topic of fascinating discourse for football afficionados and experts alike. They are rare moments of one-on-one situations in a team game that can decide the course of a match or title, an aspect of the sport that couldn't have been appreciated more by last season's La Liga winners Real Madrid.
Los Blancos scored 15% of their La Liga goals (11 of 70) last season from the penalty spot and were the only team in the competition's top five to score from all their spot-kicks. Captain Sergio Ramos led from the front by scoring six successful penalties, two of them being game-winners, as Real Madrid won their first La Liga title in three years.
Top five active penalty takers in La Liga
Ramos has an impressive penalty conversion rate in the Spanish top flight; he has only missed one spot-kick during his 16-season La Liga career. Let us find out if the Real Madrid captain is among the five active La Liga players with the most successful penalties in the competition.
#5 Alvaro Negredo (Cadiz) - 19 penalties
Sergio Ramos misses out on a place in the top-five as the much-travelled Alvaro Negredo, who has been signed up by newly-promoted Cadiz, has the fifth-most number of successful penalties by an active player in the La Liga.
Negredo has scored 19 penalties (from 24 attempts) in the La Liga, a tally that consists of one successful spot-kick for Valencia, 11 for Sevilla and seven for Almeria.
His last penalty in La Liga proved to be the match-winner for Valencia against Getafe in the 2014-15 edition of the competition.
#4 Raul Garcia (Athletic Bilbao) - 17 penalties
34-year-old Athletic Bilbao midfielder Raul Garcia has scored 17 (of 20) penalties in the La Liga, with all but one coming for his present club.
In a career-best season in 2019-20, Garcia scored 15 goals in the La Liga, a tally that comprised of a league-high seven successful spot-kicks, with Bilbao winning four of these seven games and drawing three.