Saturday 15 February 2014
With the penalty that earned Liverpool an important 3-2 victory over Fulham on Wednesday, Steven Gerrard moved level with former Arsenal forward Thierry Henry in number of spot-kicks converted in the Barclays Premier League.
The Liverpool captain has scored 23 goals from the spot in the Barclays Premier League, joint fourth with Henry, and Gerrard has third spot in his sights. He is just three successful penalties away from going alongside Matt Le Tissier's 26 spot-kicks.
Gerrard remains a fair distance behind the top two penalty-takers in the Barclays Premier League. Alan Shearer leads the way with 56 goals, followed by Frank Lampard with 43. To reach Henry's total Gerrard required five more attempts than the Frenchman. Indeed the conversion rate of Gerrard is worst in the top five and, in the top 10 of penalties scored, only Gareth Barry has a poorer record. However, it could be argued that with greater technology in the game nowadays for goalkeepers to research penalty takers as well as more athletic glovemen, Gerrard faces a more difficult task than players of relative yore.
So is Gerrard the best taker of penalties the Barclays Premier League has had? Or are the other four better? You can vote in our poll on the premierleague.com homepage.
The player with the best record from the spot is Everton's Leighton Baines, who has yet to miss one of his 11 penalties taken. He is followed by Le Tissier who converted all but one his 26 spot-kicks (96%). From the players who have taken a minimum 10 penalties, the worst conversion rate belongs to former Aston Villa striker Juan Pablo Angel, who scored with half of his 10 spot-kicks.
This season is on course for the best conversion rate for penalties in the history of the Barclays Premier League. Of the 53 penalties awarded, only nine have been missed, a conversion rate of 83%. This is beating by 1% point the rate of the opening season in the Barclays Premier League, 1992/93, when 81 out of 99 spot-kicks were successfully converted (81.8%).
The goalkeeper with the most saves from penalties is David James, who stopped 13 spot-kicks, about one in five of every spot-kick he faced. However, the goalkeeper with the best rate of preventing penalties is David Seaman, the former Arsenal stopper, who kept out almost one in three of the 22 penalties he faced.
|Player||Pens Taken||pens Goals
|Matthew le Tissier||26||25||96.15|
|Ruud van Nistelrooy||22||18||81.82|
|Matthew Le Tissier||26||25||96.20%|
|Juan Pablo Angel||10||5||50.00%|
|Season||Pens Taken||Pen scored||success rate
|Goalkeeper||Pens Saved||Pens Faced||Success rate
|Edwin van der Sar