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Best football shooters according to the stats and Football Manager

Eduard Bănulescu

The art of football tactics is ever-changing. For the very best players, a few things remain the same. As Roy Keane once stated, “you need to run, pass and shoot”. Here’s a look at the best long-range shooters in football in 2020.

We’re using our own secret sauce data for this one. And, to double-check, we took Football Manager 2020 and FIFA 21, generally reliable sources of football info, also acting as guides.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Zlatan Ibrahimovic, AC MilanSource: Getty Images

Ibrahimovic remains one of the best and most beloved players in world football. Age has done little to slow the AC Milan player down. Still, the Swedish forward, in 2020, makes better use of skill and strength as ever before. He’s still known to test keepers with long term efforts. Back in 2016 one of his shots was clocked at 125 Km/h. Getting in front of that ball is like stepping into incoming traffic.

In Football Manager 2020, Ibrahimovic has a 16/20 long shot coefficient. In FIFA 21 he is rated as 88/100. Clearly, the Swede remains an elite striker.

Lionel Messi

Lionel Messi

Lionel Messi’s bag of footballing tricks is so rich that his long-shot efforts sometimes get overlooked. The Argentine is a player that can score or find a killer pas out of seemingly any position. Football stats show that Messi has scored, since 2013, more goals (43) from outside the box than any other player. Football Manager rates him with 17/20. FIFA 21 considers him the best player in the game, with a 94/100 long shot ability.

Cristiano Ronaldo

Cristiano Ronaldo excited about UCL knockout stage

Train like a warrior, live like a monk, looks to have been Ronaldo’s mantra throughout his career. While starting off as a genuinely talented player, CR7 has molded almost every aspect of his game.

Impossible long-range goals have always been part of his arsenal. One of the best football shooters on the planet, Ronaldo receives a 94/100 rating from FIFA, the highest in the game. Football Manager is of the same opinion, awarding him an 18/20 rating.

Ryan Babel

ryan babel

Ryan Babel is, without a doubt, one of our wild card choices here. Although without the star power and career highlights of Ronaldo or Messi, the Dutchman’s technical attributes have received much praise.

Babel plays for Galatasaray in the Turkish Super Lig, a competition hosted by FootballCoin. FIFA 21 rates his long-shots as 82/100 and FM20 thinks he deserves 18/20. The winger has spent his career playing for numerous, diverse clubs. Ajax Amsterdam, Fulham, or Al Ain are on his resume. Babel remains an underrated, long-shot specialist.

Philippe Coutinho

philippe coutinho

Philippe Coutinho’s career had its up and downs in recent years. The highlight was this period was Bayern Munchen’s Champions League victory in 2020. He also scored some important, usually close range, goals.

Before that, when he was still a Liverpool player, Coutinho was a real threat from outside the box. He has managed 24 such goals. Only Messi has scored more time from outside the box. Football Manager 20 reckon he deserves 16/20 points.

With a renewed sense of confidence and a brand new challenge, Coutinho looks to find his swagger now that he is back at FC Barcelona.

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