Strikers | The Art of Goalscoring | Documentary

Strikers | The Art of Goalscoring | Documentary


You’re the hero if you score the goals, you’re
the main man! That’s a good thing. It’s a team game, but I think at the end of it
for a striker it’s all about goals. When you do it the first time, you think, ‘I want to
do this again’. Goals! Goals! Goals! Goals! And how to win a game, that’s the most important thing. Course every time I go on the pitch I think I’m going to score a goal. Sometimes it takes you somewhere and you just want to stay there for the longest time. It’s nice, it’s a good feeling. Oh it’s a brilliant feeling, especially when you were playing at home and you know
what you’ve just done has made 95% of the stadium that you’re playing in just erupt
and go mental for a few seconds. You lose sense of where you are sometimes and you’re
not even aware of the the crowd’s reaction quite often, but it is a feeling of ecstasy
and then in the five minutes following it you’re really jogging about but you’re still
thinking about that goal. Listen when you score a goal and you get that surge of adrenaline, that depending on how big the goal is, depends on how big that surge is. It’s an addictive
feeling alright. I remember the first time I scored a goal, that was it for me. Just fell in love, you know, just wanted that feeling over and over again. It’s just the best feeling.
I think it started from like the school playground. Obviously growing up, I had a footballing
family, my uncles used to play, my dad played. I think it was in me from an early age because
within my family everybody was a striker. I would be going to watch Coventry play at
Highfield Road and watching the likes of Noel Whelan and Darren Huckerby and Dion Dublin
and people like that to then watching the likes of Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen and just
seeing what they do and how they do it and just being fascinated by it and trying to
replicate that on the Sunday. We used to play across from where I live. There were some shops and there was a square we used to call it and there was two lamp posts at the end
of each square and we used to play games. Occasionally then we would turn it around
and put a goal up against a hedging, there was a hedge and we would kind of put things
up to make it look like a goal and we would do crossing and I would get the smaller lads,
they were tricky wingers, they were to cross it and I was the big centre forward coming in
and that’s how I started learning how to head the ball. Then we would have a prize for the
best celebration and stuff like that. We were all a bit daft I suppose. I think natural goalscorers are born, I think they’ve got an instinct in them, which I think comes very naturally to them. Very difficult I think some of the skills of the art of goalscoring, very difficult to try and teach and pass on to somebody who doesn’t get it. From the time I could walk really, I always had a ball in the house because my nan used to go mad because
I used to smash everything in the house. But what I used to do is, you know the chairs,
so what I used to do is put the chairs together and you know the two legs, I used to throw
the ball against the wall and volley it in between. I remember doing that, I remember
doing that for like hours, but no one told me to do it, I don’t know, I just did it. I would say born. I would say born, I think you get natural, natural gifted centre forwards who can score goals, like Ian Wright Robbie Fowler, Alan Shearer, Henry. People like that,
they are natural, they naturally score goals, that’s what they do. You see other players,
you’ve seen it last season with Vardy, who’ll score goals, but he never scored goals the
year before that, he never scored the goals the year before that, and he’s not scoring
goals this year so that’s not a natural goalscorer. Them players I just rounded off they are natural,
you are born with that. You can teach people where to go positional wise, but you can’t
teach someone to score a goal in my opinion because as I said the top ones always have
that extra second of composure. I went through periods where I couldn’t wait for the ball to come across, then you hit bad patches as well and I think that’s kind of proof again
that you’re not really bred to do it, it’s about having a trade, a craft, developing
that craft as best you can and when that craft starts to play tricks on you and make you
work even harder to get it back, but that said your lads like Michael Owen came along
and Robbie Fowler back in the day and they just made it look so ridiculously easy that
maybe they were just bred, it was never going to be anything different, but people like
me we had to work hard. They’re confidence players, they need goals and I think after training I love to see them out there spending 15-20 minutes finishing. I remember having
a spell with Yakubu at Portsmouth. I bought Luther Blissett in to work with him and Luther
was great for him. I would let him go and spend most of the morning with Yakubu, take
a couple of strikers, but Yakubu, if he wanted a couple of defenders, whatever he wanted
and he’d spend an hour with Yak that morning just finishing, finishing, getting in positions,
scoring and Yak scored 27-28 goals that year for us and Luther was a big part of what he
achieved. It’s just constantly practice. As a centre forward you want to see the ball hit the back of the net. Doesn’t matter position you are, what range of shooting you’re doing, when you’ve got confidence, confidence you’ve worked on things then introduce a goalkeeper
and then put it into practice. Strikers are very unique. They have a completely different mindset to any other player in the rest of the team. Strikers have to be three things
– they have to be clinical first and foremost, they have to be composed and they have to
be confident under pressure in the moment when it matters. We know that when a striker
is confident a different part of the brain is activated. The presence of anxiety changes
the way that the brain behaves because of that the striker has to learn to cope and
deal with anxious moments like taking a penalty for example, to equalise in the final minute
of the game. In the kids I teach you definitely can see natural goalscorers in them and a lot of the time you see it is when do things wrong they get frustrated with themselves
because they know they can do better and that’s a good trait to have as a centre forward and
you’ll see that even in the professional game. A striker will miss a chance and for a few
seconds he’ll be disappointed in himself, but he’ll be switched back on to the next
chance and that’s something in the young lads that I’m teaching that I really look for. It’s interesting, you look the strikers and they tend to be, I’m not saying selfish people, but they tend to be the people, not self-centred either, but they know what they want. They
tend to be the ones that quite enjoy the limelight. Someone like Ian Wright was an incredible
player, great personality and it kind of went with him and they’re all the same – the Gary
Linekers, the Shearers, I now work with these guys. I like to think that the defenders were
the more reliable people. I’ve said it before we never really lost our front door key, whereas
some of the midfielders players would turn up with half their gear each day or turn up late. If we played on the weekend and say we’ve won 10-0 and you haven’t scored as a striker, but the team has got three points you are not happy. You’re happy for the club
because you’ve got three points, but you can’t be totally happy. You go home and you think,
‘Pfff’, because you just want to score. There’s a selfishness about a centre forward I think,
which you’re not proud to admit, but it’s a fact. Nice people and I mean that in best
sense of the word, nice people can’t make centre forwards on the pitch. You have to be
a horrible, little selfish thing that’s arrogant and whatever and as soon as you cross the
white line and be as nice as you want off it. I think strikers have to have a different
mindset, you have to be concentrated on yourself but also you’re putting in a big part
for the team. You’re arguably playing the furthest away from the rest of your teammates
so there’s often a bigger distance between you and your teammates than there is for other
positions and there’s pressure to score goals and it’s how you react to scoring goals and
missing chances and mentally it’s arguably as important as the technique side of finishing. The very best strikers are able to perform in what I call present moment focus. They’re undistracted by previous mistakes so this ability to snap back, to concentrate, to maintain this present
moment focus, that’s part of a striker’s mentality, that’s part of the greatest strikers’
ability to stay focused and be confident, ready for the next opportunity. Goals! Goals! Goals! Goals! And how to win a game. That’s the most important thing, like for me as go on to the pitch I want know how can I score. I have to believe that I can score every single game
and how will I score and how will I help my teammates win the game. You also have to create
your signature move, your signature move and that’s something what my agent told me. He
told me, ‘Rom you have to have your signature move’ and in the way that if you have any
trouble in the game you know when you get the ball, you know you’re going to do your
signature move and that’s it. I would probably say Jermain was the most obsessed and that’s the reason why he’s 34 and still scoring goals now because you know he more than any player
that I played with loved scoring goals. You would be walking past him in the gym and he’ll
try and slot one past you. He would just see a goal, he’d make a goal out of anything.
You didn’t even know you were in goal, but he saw that you were in goal for some reason
and just put it past you. I watch a lot of goals, I watch my own personal ones, I know of other forwards that do the same thing. Some people listen to music, certain types
of music. If you’ve worn a certain pair of boots and scored like a hat-trick then obviously you’re going to want to wear those boots again the next game. There are strange quirky little things like I have to put my left boot on and left shinpad on and my left sock on every time, I don’t know why. Sometimes if you have a week, say like on a Thursday you do a finishing session and you go into the weekend and then you’re on fire, you score a couple of goals,
the next Thursday you think, ‘I’ve got to do the same thing, I’ve got to do the same
thing I did last week’. I’ve heard of people changing their boots or going and getting a haircut, for instance. They’re having a few bad games so they go and get a haircut
and they suddenly feel better. If I’m doing a finishing session after training. Even if
the manager says, ‘Ok last shot each’, if I don’t score I say, ‘Nah, give me another
one.’ Always like to put the ball in the net and then I’ll go in. What’s the hardest skill in
football? And I would say, ‘Scoring goals’. You get me a goalscorer because they come in all shapes and sizes, they’ve got a variety of different attributes. Obviously pace is
a great advantage in that, but if you’ve got calm head and look at some of the finishes
that when you wait for the goalkeeper to go down early? Or do you wait for him to stand up? Or
do you try and lob it over him? Or do you go round him? The strikers that are the best
strikers are the ones that make the right decisions. The best goalscorer I’ve ever seen
was Jimmy Greaves. Jimmy was a genius. Genius. The whole world stood still, everything stopped
when Jimmy got the ball in the box. The ball would come to Jim and a defender would come
sliding in to block it and Jim would make out he was going to shoot and just move the
ball and then another defender would come in and throw himself in the way and Jimmy
would move the ball and then he would just roll it into the corner of the goal, side foot it. I remember Wrighty (Ian Wright) always saying to me, ‘Be attracted to the goalkeeper’, I said, ‘What do you mean?’ Midfielder has got the ball outside the box. If you make your run you can’t get it, if he’s going to shoot be attracted to the goalkeeper like
a magnet so you’re almost like – he shoots, you’re running toward the goalkeeper, save
it, bang, rebound. I always think for a goalkeeper, if they’re, obviously they’re like this and
as soon as they jump it’s impossible for a goalkeeper to jump and then set themselves
and get down from there. If you hit the target and you direct it, for a goalkeeper to get
from there to there – it’s impossible. And that’s when you’ve obviously got to stay relaxed
and really concentrate on the strike and if you can, if you can have that slight little
look at the goalkeeper and see when they jump and then you, bang, it’s impossible – they
can’t react. You can switch off as centre forwards, switch off and as much as the defender is thinking you’re switching off secretly you’re not. You’re there, ‘Right I’m not interested’,
look non-interested, BANG! And then you’re away. You’re playing cat and mouse with the
defender really and that’s really how I work. The trouble with being a defender and the
opposite of being a striker is you can have a great game and mess up in the 90th minute.
For that reason, defensively you have to really be concentrated throughout the 90 minutes
and it’s best not to say too much until the game is finished, just because you can always
get caught out or slip up. Defenders as well are becoming athletic you know. You have lots of defenders who are fast as well and strong and you know they can do everything the same
as strikers except scoring goals. I think it’s really important to maintain the sharpness
in your body, the explosiveness and the strength and the power. I’ve never in all the time I’ve been in football, I’ve never not been looking for a striker so I think that says it all. They’re very, very, few and far between and certainly at Premier League level they are, they’ve very scarce and very difficult and also come with big price tags and also
they come with a big transfer fee. It’s a pressure that I’ve always enjoyed because I think, ‘Well if you’re going to put that sort of pressure on me and I deliver’, then again you can feel good about yourself, you know the love that you get from the football club and the fans, it just helps you. It helps you want to work even harder. I remember Jermain Defoe’s mum when I took him to Portsmouth. I didn’t get involved in contract discussions but she was in the room with the agent and with Milan Mandaric the chairman and Peter Storrie, the chief executive and they came
out and Peter Storrie said, ‘Look Harry I think you better come in, we’re getting anywhere here, we’re
struggling.” I said, “What’s the problem?” We went back in and Jermain’s mum was a lovely
lady, but she said, “We want a goal bonus”, and I said, “What do you think we’re paying
him £50,000 a week for, to miss them?” I still message him now. I love him, he’s funny.
“Just score goals.” That’s when he used to phone me, “JD”, “Yes Harry”, “I just want
you to come here and score goals”, “Ok”, “Forget the medical, you don’t need to do a medical,
just come, just sign and score goals.” Well the game moved along and changed and I think
the influx of foreign coaches into our leagues probably saw a different type of approach
in attacking as you know now and Leicester were proving it last year, you don’t have
to have the ball to win things. In our day we thought you did and so that change of philosophy
has meant that the idea that a targetman is needed to get you into the game – that’s been
dispensed with a little bit. When I was growing up it was always two centre forwards and it’s how you could work together, how you could link together as a big man and little man and I think the introduction, in my eyes anyway, of Didier Drogba at Chelsea when Jose Mourinho
brought him and just played him upfront on his own and then that got a lot of people
thinking, ‘We can get one big man to do a bit of everything’. I think it’s changed significantly,
I think the goalscoring burden is shared around maybe four attackers if you’re playing a
4-2-3-1 the wide players getting into the box and score and I think that’s why there’s been a shift towards a striker who either is good at holding the ball up, he’s good at dropping deep and linking play, you need, to be unpredictable, you need to have multiple
sources of attack and it’s been a massive shift over the last, five or six years, towards
players like Aguero, Sanchez, Roberto Firmino, not necessarily out and out number nines,
they do score goals, but maybe their main feature is they’re good at linking play, good
at getting their teammates into goalscoring positions themselves. I mean the essence of a striker’s job is still the same, he’s expected to get into good positions in the box – no
point being out the box if there ball is going in there and getting himself on the end of
it, you know that’s never going to change. Goals win games, obviously not just the forwards
can score, anyone can score, but the strikers are the ones that are meant to score. Like
I mentioned about people expecting you to score and it is an art because it’s something
you rehearse every day, you practice, you get different scenarios around the box, you
practice it day-in, day-out in training. Great defenders, goalkeepers, they can play a major
part in the football industry, but the true excitement of celebration is when you score
a goal and that’s why, whether they like it or not, strikers are the most valuable. I was a striker so I’m going to say strikers are the most important part of the team. You can’t win games unless you score goals. To be honest with you, favourite way of scoring
a goal – they all count don’t they, that’s how I see it. You just feel so powerful, your teammates jumping on you, I don’t know you might have won the game for your team, your family, the fans, the club. Scoring goals is the most important thing on the pitch and every good striker is selfish we don’t need to deny that. It’s definitely the best feeling in the world. Definitely the best feeling in the world and you have to embrace every moment because I know when I finish football, I’ll definitely miss it.

100 thoughts on “Strikers | The Art of Goalscoring | Documentary”

  1. this is great insight, and nothing but the truth coming from the players about what it takes to be a striker. and strikers are bred, but from a young age and over time. repetition and practice in front of goal and in games. Keep it up with videos like this!

  2. A whole Documentary about the Art of Goalscoring, involving loads of BPL players and not a single mention of one of the greatest at this art: Van Nistelrooy! A bit disappointed

  3. Quality video. Fully anticipating that I'll be the Sunday League Lukaku this weekend after watching this. Realistically I'll still just be the Sunday League Simone Zaza.

  4. I really enjoyed that and will watch again. It's clearly a different experience for strikers – they're the most valuable because their task is the crucial one.
    I think the best are simply the ones that enjoy scoring the most – after a goal, there are feelings of power, validation and importance, emotions strong enough to live for.

  5. Best penalty box striker = Van Nistolroy.
    Best finisher at speed = Eto.
    Best header = Shearer.
    Best back to goal = Drogba.
    Best movement = Lewandowski.
    Best power shot = Zlatan.
    Best at volleying. = Batistuta/ Cavani.
    Best double footed striker = Suarez.
    Best close control of a striker = Aguero/Romario.
    Best all round striker = Henry/ Ronaldo R9.

  6. I haven't scored a goal for two years as a CDM and then I scored a header and I was so happy for the entire day 😀

  7. perhaps more natural born strikers like chicharito, inzaghi, forlan, lewa, makaay, shearer, falcao, milito to their own instinct could enlighten footballs in future

  8. So when a coach tells you your not meant to play striker or born to play striker your gonna quit? No try again you don't need to be born with a gift you just need to have the mindset to outwork the so called talented to keep going.

  9. Natural goalscorers-rubbish!! it's from Practice Practice and Practice. C.Ronaldo at 18 and C.Ronaldo now. Case in point.

  10. I play as a striker, and one thing I realize every time I score is I don't know how it was done, and I think that's a sign that you're a good striker, you didn't think about how to score, it just happens.

  11. And then there's messi. He's a playmaker a goal scorer. A dribbler. A winger. Attacking midfielder. Goodness me. How can someone be able to do all these things at such a high level.

  12. Decent video, but quite poorly edited. The same clip of Jermaine scoring in the far left corner over and over again and the same clip of him talking about being 'attracted to the keeper' repeated. Pretty poor tbh

  13. To be honest, Jermaine Defoe is a born striker hes just been unlucky that he hasnt signed for a top top team. give him 2 chances he will score 1 , so him getting a team that will give him 4-5 chances a game he'll be betting braces weekly

  14. Imagine if you're cristiano or messi who practically scores a goal every game. Now that's the art of goalscoring.

  15. maybe I just have a soft spot for him but Super Pippo needs a mention. that guy scored anyway he could. There is an art I think to being in the right place or even just forcing the damn thing in anyway you can. They all count and that boy has a lot of winners medals scoring boat loads of ugly goals.

  16. Interesting doc. Got me thinking that I would love to see mini series doc exploring the art of 'Player Roles' i.e False Nine, Regista, Sweeper etc. The understanding, philosophy and origination of the system and its roles.

  17. I'm a CAM (Sometimes LAM or RAM) and I can pass, chip, make assist, drible, jungle record is 354, and I have been playing soccer for soon 11 years. I can (In my opinion) everything you need. But I cant freaking score a goal. Of course I do score goals, but i miss too many chances. I cant just get the Ball into the goal, without curling it around the keeper, drible the only defender wich is twenty feet away, make a fake shot… you got it. I'm currently playing in the second best League for my age (13). What should I do?

  18. anyone who thinks you are born with the gift is a fucking idiot, every player that guy mentioned has worked their fucking ass off to be that good. 4:01

  19. This is one of the best documentary I've ever watched and defoe's mentality is perfect for a striker he's concentrated on box as I understood.

  20. Merson is a knob. Obviously Jamie Vardy is nowhere near the level of Henry, Shearer, etc. but the man has shown he can be deadly and clinical in front of goal. To single him out like that was kind of a dick move.

  21. Have to disagree with Paul Mersons opinion about goal scorers being born. Henry started as a Winger and even admits himself that he's not a natural goal scorer like David Trezeguet is. It's just about hard work, repetition and training. That hard work bred Henry into a goal machine, a mon avis.

  22. Vardy is one hell of a striker and natural goal scorer he’s gotten plenty of goals in the premier league since they moved up and is definitely an underrated player that deserves more recognition

  23. I’m 12 I was dribbling through the whole team and then this guy fouled me, I fell on my leg bent it and fractured it

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