Top 10 Best Free Kick Takers in Football (Soccer)

The Top Ten
1 Juninho Pernambucano Antônio Augusto Ribeiro Reis Jr., commonly known as Juninho or Juninho Pernambucano, is a retired Brazilian footballer who is the sporting director of French club Olympique Lyonnais. A dead-ball specialist noted for his bending free kicks, in particular the knuckleball technique which he developed,... read more

Juninho is one of the only players to score more than 40 free kicks in his career (Beckham was in the 30s). Not only is that impressive, but some of the spots he managed to score from were way outside the box. Talk about power and dipping skills. If the question was, "who puts the craziest curve on the ball during a free kick," then Beckham rules all day. Juninho was the most effective, and his statistics prove that.

Juninho is by far the best free-kick taker in the world, and this is due to range and consistency. The technique used for most of his styles is the knuckleball technique with topspin. This is one of the hardest techniques to master when striking the ball. Juninho's use of this technique has seen him beat some of the world's finest keepers, making some of them look like amateurs.

2 David Beckham David Robert Joseph Beckham is (born 2 May 1975) is an English former professional footballer, the current president & co-owner of Inter Miami CF and co-owner of Salford City.. He played for Manchester United, Preston North End, Real Madrid, Milan, LA Galaxy, Paris Saint-Germain and the England national... read more

He's one of the most famous soccer players ever. First, because he's handsome and looks good. And second, because he scores goals from far away. This English player is the master of the midfield position. He played for Manchester United, PSG, Los Angeles Galaxy, etc., and he's the highest-paid player and one of the sexiest players ever. He's also the richest player ever.

Additionally, he and his kids had a golden liquid splashed on their faces at the Disney awards.

How is he number 2? Come on, guys. There is a movie called Bend it like Beckham, all because of him. And why is Andrea Pirlo not in the top ten? He is definitely better than Messi at free kicks. Messi is a dribbler and someone who chips it over the goalie and makes the entire other team look pathetic with his awesomeness, but he doesn't even take free kicks for Barcelona. Xavi does.

3 Cristiano Ronaldo Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro (born 5 February 1985) is a Portuguese professional footballer who plays as a forward for Serie A club Juventus and captains the Portugal national team.

Ronaldo is simply prolific when it comes to set pieces. He has scored more than 50 free kicks throughout his career. The pace, power, and swerve are what make him so feared and set him apart from all other set piece specialists.

He is simply the greatest and most consistent footballer of his decade. He is football himself and is light years ahead of anyone playing the sport.

He is an active legend. There is nothing this man can't do. At times, he tries to put too much power into the free kick, causing him to miss occasionally, but when he hits the ball well, no one can stop the kick.

He is, in my opinion, the best active free-kick taker and definitely in the top 5 of all-time FK takers, if not top 3. By the end of his career, as he gains a bit more intelligence in FK and any other situation, I believe he can be the greatest of all time and the greatest free-kick taker.

4 Diego Maradona Diego Armando Maradona (October 30, 1960 - November 25, 2020) was an Argentine professional footballer. Widely regarded as one of the greatest players in the history of the sport, he was one of the two joint winners of the FIFA Player of the 20th Century award. Maradona was given the nickname "El Pibe... read more

There's nothing to say. He is simply the greatest of all time - magic. Go and see all his goals, and you'll understand why he was the best.

I'm speechless for this player. He's not human, but he's a God.

5 Roberto Carlos Roberto Carlos da Silva Rocha (born 10 April 1973), commonly known as Roberto Carlos, is a Brazilian former professional footballer who now works as a football ambassador. He started his career in Brazil as a forward but spent most of his career as a left back and has been described as the "most offensive-minded... read more

Come on, guys, Roberto Carlos had a free kick that could go faster than a Ferrari, Lamborghini, Formula 1 car, etc. If his free kicks were on target (which most of the time they were), it was almost certain to be a goal. Roberto Carlos also created probably the hardest free-kick style to do but arguably the most effective. He hits the ball with the outside of his foot to make the ball look like it's going out, but it curves back into the goal. Spectacular!

Roberto Carlos curves the ball when he shoots a free kick. In a 1997 match against France, he took an incredible long-distance shot. The ball curved around the jumping players and just chipped over the goalkeeper, leading to a one-nil victory for Brazil thanks to that amazing goal.

6 Siniša Mihajlović

Sinisa unleashes the bomba! He is a very rare left-footed free kick specialist who knew how to combine power, accuracy, and swerve altogether. For him, free kicks from 25 meters were like penalties. He was a free kick hat-trick hero against Sampdoria, scoring many beautiful goals, like the one where he netted a goal through the legs of the Udinese keeper from 30 meters out. It's too bad he didn't use the "knuckle ball" technique for free kicks. Who knows what would have happened if he had...

Rumor has it that his powerful left foot shot reached a top speed of 165 km/h during research from the Department of Physics at the University in Belgrade. He is the best free kick taker in the world.

7 Ronaldinho Ronaldo de Assis Moreira (born 21 March 1980), commonly known as Ronaldinho Gaúcho or simply Ronaldinho, is a Brazilian former professional footballer and current ambassador for Barcelona. He played mostly as an attacking midfielder, but was also deployed as a winger. Often considered one of the best... read more

Here are the facts: Beckham may have a bit more skill than Ronaldinho, but he can't curl a ball into a goal like Ronaldinho can. Ronnie can do it from anywhere on the pitch. He scored an incredible goal against England in the 2002 World Cup, from at least 35-40 meters away from the goal. In contrast, Beckham usually takes them from about 25-30 meters. If it's farther than that, Madrid will call on Roberto Carlos to power-shot one into the goal.

Also, in the year Barcelona won the Champions League (the 2005-2006 season), Ronnie and Barca played against the Italian team Udinese. Ronaldinho scored a hat trick from three direct free kicks. If you don't believe me, check the statistics yourself.

8 Steven Gerrard Steven George Gerrard (born 30 May 1980) is an English professional football manager and former Liverpool player who currently manages Scottish Premiership club Rangers.

Not only is he an amazing striker of the ball, but he also delivers results when they are most needed. Remember the F.A. Cup final against West Ham? Down three-nil at halftime, and the rest, as they say, is history.

He possesses both control and ability. He is the best free-kick taker and should be in the top ten. While players like Messi and Ronaldo are good with the ball in the field, they are not free kickers. Gerrard is the best.

Does nothing fancy but still achieves the best result. Some people, AKA Ronaldo, try to do too much, and their free kicks end up in the crowd!

9 Lionel Messi Lionel Andrés "Leo" Messi was born on June 24, 1987. He is an Argentine professional footballer who plays as a forward for the American club, Inter Miami CF, in the MLS. Messi is widely regarded as one of the greatest football players of all time. His birthplace is Rosario, Argentina.

Messi is not just one of the best. He is the best at free kicks. His free kick curves are just amazing, as are his direct goals from a free kick. He is the best and one of the best I have ever seen. Sure, he sometimes misses, but everyone does that. Everyone misses from time to time.

But when he scores, it is just amazing the way he does it and the way he just puts it at the back of the net. Just magical. Messi is a magician, a great magician, and he deserves number 1. He needs to be number 1 because of the journey he came from, from being the poorest of the poor to a legend. So he is, and deserves, number 1.

10 Andrea Pirlo

Pirlo played with AC Milan and Juventus in his career. He's considered the best Italian free kick taker ever, surpassing Alessandro Del Piero. He served as the captain of AC Milan and was a leading figure in every team he joined, embodying the role of a king.

He led AC Milan to win three Italian titles and similarly led Juventus to three Italian titles. He's also one of the players with the most caps in Italy.

He was my favorite midfielder, and in FIFA 11, he was supposed to be a good free-kick taker, which I agree with. In 2010, he scored from a distance of 35 meters, forcing the goalkeeper to fully stretch.

The Contenders
11 Pierre van Hooijdonk

The best footballer ever! He just punished all goalkeepers game after game.

He scored 14 goals in all competitions in his first season in Rotterdam. I have never seen anything like it.

Such a great free kick taker. I will always remember the one against Freiburg.

12 Juan Arango

He is unquestionably the best left-footer. Arguably the most underrated free-kick taker in the world, he should easily be in the top five. Unfortunately, he has played for less renowned teams such as Mallorca and Borussia Mönchengladbach.

How is this guy not on the list? I have seen about 50 goals on free kicks from him, but many people undervalue his skills.

His high accuracy at long distances is simply magical. When he kicks the ball, he makes the difficult look easy.

13 Alessandro del Piero Alessandro Del Piero Ufficiale is an Italian former professional footballer who played as a deep-lying forward.

He had a great percentage of goals from free kicks. He has been scoring from free kicks since he was young. Juninho scored from free kicks in the second part of his career. Every Del Piero free kick was dangerous and in proximity to the corners. He transformed free kicks from every position. He also scored long-range goals with both feet. Unbelievable talent.

Del Piero scored the most free kicks in the history of Serie A and the European Champions League. He is the best on this list, hands down.

One more thing you have to bear in mind is that Del Piero scored in the Italian League (Serie A), which has the best defenses and the most experienced goalkeepers (compared to the French League or any league, for that matter).

14 Shunsuke Nakamura

Any list of great free-kick takers that doesn't include Nakamura is drawn up by the ignorant. I'm not sure what his percentage was, but I seem to remember him scoring from direct free kicks just as often as he missed. It was almost like a penalty.

He also scored them when it mattered in the Champions League. He had perfect technique and the courage to match.

His technique is unrivaled. Watching him curl a free kick right into the top corner is a thing of beauty. A free kick is like a penalty if he is on your team. A Celtic legend! He makes Van der Sar look like Stretch Armstrong.

15 Wesley Sneijder Wesley Sneijder is a Dutch professional footballer who plays for Turkish club Galatasaray and the Netherlands national team.

Yeo, because he plays for the best team, Real Madrid, he has scored four goals this year, and three were on a free kick. P.S. Madrid are going to smash Roma in the Champions League.

16 Ryan Giggs Ryan Joseph Giggs is a Welsh football coach and former player who is currently the assistant manager at Manchester United and co-owner of Salford City.

The best and most talented free kick taker.

17 Rivaldo

Power, curve, and genius placement: Rivellino scored absolutely classic game-changing direct-free-kick goals against Czechoslovakia and East Germany upon the biggest World stage. Yet, he gunned his shots in while the balls were still heavy and slow. Rivellino must be a top 10 direct-kick specialist of all times, perhaps top 5.

Go watch footage of Rivellino. You will not be sorry. He was the original master of elastico and had rare close-control dribble mastery in dense traffic. All-time greats like Ronaldinho and Maradona are self-proclaimed disciples of his. As one of the original direct-kick specialists, he introduced shots that few can ever repeat.

18 Diego Forlán
19 Zico

Arrgh! These lists are terrible! Zico is the best ever, or at least in the top 10, yet he is beaten by the likes of Van Persie, Drogba, and Nobby Solano!

I don't care what anyone says. I firmly believe Zico is the best on free kicks. He has no match.

He is the only one to have scored more than Juninho, and it's "only" about 30 more.

20 Alex

Guys! Alex stands out from other free-kick takers because he has the ability to fire his bullet shot precisely to his preferred position. Ultimately, the goalkeeper will not get a chance to touch the ball. That's Alex for you!

21 Juan Román Riquelme

He is the most creative midfielder in soccer right now. His free kicks are just too accurate. For me, he is the best, along with Nakamura.

He is a real specialist compared to others higher in this list. He hits the goal more consistently. He is always dangerous.

22 Gheorghe Hagi

He could score from any distance, not just outside of the box. In addition, he could score from any angle, as demonstrated in international team matches as well as Champions League and domestic league matches. Without a doubt, he is the most frequent and best free-kick taker in history!

Hagi was undoubtedly the greatest left-footed player of all times. To this day, I have not seen a goalkeeper who could easily stop one of his long-range "torpedoes". Let's leave the popular names aside and give these players the recognition they deserve: "Hagi-Juninho-Beckham!"

23 Leighton Baines Leighton John Baines is an English professional footballer who plays as a left-back for Premier League club Everton and the England national team.

54? You can't be serious! He is better than all of these minor league players in the Middle East above him. If you don't believe me, watch clips on YouTube!

Baines is very consistent because if he doesn't score a free kick, it either gets on target or hits the frame of the goal.

Leighton Baines is the set-piece king without a doubt.

24 Franck Ribéry Franck Henry Pierre Ribéry is a French professional footballer who plays for German club Bayern Munich.
25 Robin van Persie Robin van Persie is a Dutch coach and former professional footballer who played as a striker. Regarded as one of the best strikers of his generation, he is the all-time top scorer for the Netherlands men's national team. He is currently an assistant manager at boyhood club Feyenoord in his first managerial... read more

With killer class and a left foot, he lost it because of injuries, but videos are still evidence. He can still come back to the same level.

He has amazing speed, curve, and power in his kicks. I think he has the best left foot in the Premier League. He is awesome.

His free kicks are so accurate. I haven't seen one better than his free kick against Everton some years back.

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