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What Is a Striker in Football?

Updated: Apr 7


In the world of football, attackers often steal the limelight. Whether it's a player like Karim Benzema leading their team to a phenomenal victory in the Champions League or Kylian Mbappe taking centre stage at the World Cup, goal-scorers are the ones who tend to grab the headlines. But being a striker in modern football is not just about scoring goals; it's a multifaceted position that demands a diverse skill set. In this article, we'll delve into the intricacies of the striker role and explore the qualities that make a great football striker.


The Role of a Striker


Legendary Dutch footballer and coach Johan Cruyff once said


, "To win, you have to score one more goal than your opponent."

It may sound simplistic, but many attack-minded football thinkers would agree with this principle. And if you aspire to build your team's tactics around ambitious attacking football, there's one essential player: the striker.


In the current generation of football, Pacey Strikers has been the trend. The football played now has also changed drastically as now the pace is looked as a priority, the so-called "fast paced' football has taken some of the creative speciality from today's striker


A striker is one of the most crucial positions in football. Typically positioned at the forefront of the team's attack, their primary responsibility is to score goals and create opportunities for other attacking players.


What is a striker in football - striker's position
here the "center Forward" denotes the position of a striker

The striker's role can take on various forms as football has evolved over the years. Specialized types of strikers, like the false nine or the inverted winger, have emerged. In this article, we'll explore these different variations of striker play, focusing on the central striker, also known as the centre forward.


Traditionally, centre forwards are often referred to as "number 9s" due to the digit on the back of their shirts – a tradition carried on by players like Benzema, Robert Lewandowski, and Erling Haaland.


However, the game has evolved significantly, and the demands on strikers have never been greater. Let's examine the key attributes required for players in this position.


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The Key Qualities of a Football Striker


Depending on the team's formation, the striker's role can vary significantly. Some teams use two forwards in systems like 4-4-2 or 3-5-2, while others employ a lone striker. Regardless of the formation, several qualities are essential for a good striker. Here are the key skills that a striker needs:


1. Shooting Ability - Scoring goals is the striker's primary role, and this demands strong shooting skills. Strikers must pose a constant threat to the opponent's goal, scoring from various situations, including close-range tap-ins, low strikes inside the box, tight finishes from acute angles, and powerful shots from a distance. Additionally, the ability to convert penalties is crucial, as the team's main penalty taker is often the starting striker.


2. Composure - Scoring under pressure requires a high degree of composure and balance. Converting chances in high-pressure situations is a fundamental aspect of a striker's job. Often strikers face very tough opposition, A strong defender can easily defend against a striker if he is not composed. The likes of Sergio Ramos are the real reasons why strikers need a calm and composed mind and body.


3. Hold-Up Play - Effective hold-up play is a crucial skill in a striker's arsenal. This involves receiving the ball under pressure, using one's body to shield it, retaining possession, and involving teammates. It allows other players time to get into supporting positions before receiving a well-timed pass. Benzema can be cited as one of the best in the current era, As the former Real Madrid striker was responsible for holding up the play and releasing Vinicius Junoir down that left.


4. Technical Skill - Strikers at the elite level possess exceptional technical skills, including ball control, first touch, passing, and dribbling. These skills are critical for success in advanced positions on the field.


5. Intelligent Movement - Strikers must understand the types of runs to make and when to make them. Their movements can include dropping back to link up with playmakers, shifting wide to enable wingers to attack the central areas, or making direct runs into the box. Intelligent movement can disrupt and outwit defensive backlines.


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The Best Strikers in the World Right Now


These skills are abundant when watching the top strikers in the world. Here are some standout names, based on their style of play Benzema and Harry Kane are lot similar as both involved much more in playmaking than scoring goals whereas players like Erling Haalnad and Robert Lewandowski are polar opposites where they like to receive the ball from and are purely focused on scoring.



What is a striker in football/soccer - Top strikers in the world right now image
From Top Left "Robert Lewandowski" top right " Karim Benzema" Bottom left "Erling Haaland" and " Harry kane"


Playmaking Strikers -


Karim Benzema:

Winning the Ballon d'Or in 2022, France's Karim Benzema, at 35 years old, continues to shine for Real Madrid. He's known for his prolific scoring at both club and international levels. Karim Benzema is a striker who knows how to sacrifice, A striker who doesn't like to stay in the middle and receive the ball, in Real Madrid he is the one to link up play with other forwards by receiving the ball from the midfield and releasing the ball towards the wingers.


  • Want to read more about the Balon Do'r Winner in 2022 then Click Here -


Harry Kane:

England's talismanic striker is among the best attackers in the Premier League's history and is known for his versatility and goal-scoring prowess. Harry Kane is quite similar to Benzema when it comes to playing style. A striker who is not just focused on scoring goals but also has that playmaking ability. He likes to drift towards the Wings and link up with the wingers. Harry Kane has been a top striker for both his country and club right now



Pure Goal-Scoring Strikers


Robert Lewandowski:

The Polish striker, now at Barcelona, is renowned for his incredible goal-scoring ability. His prowess in the Bundesliga for Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund speaks for itself. Lewandowski didn't have to do much in Bayern as the team would pass the ball in the center searching for Lewandowski, his killer finishing and composed body would do all the work.


Erling Haaland:

At just 22 years old, the Manchester City forward is already considered one of the world's top strikers. His impressive stats and physical attributes set him apart. A pure striker who doesn't even bother going wide. He remains in that centre-forward position all the time. He has a killer instinct, A body that will allow him to reach anywhere in the air. Haaland doesn't focus on playmaking, rather he focuses on scoring goals as he is fed by Kevin De-Brune himself.





The Best Strikers of All Time


While the aforementioned players are on their way to legendary status, some strikers have already attained it:


  • Ronaldo: Often referred to as "the original Ronaldo" to distinguish him from Cristiano, the Brazilian striker made a significant impact on prestigious clubs like Real Madrid, Barcelona, AC Milan, and Inter.

  • Pele: With three World Cup wins, Pele is considered one of the greatest goal-scorers in the history of football. His record of over 600 goals for club and country speaks for itself.

  • Gerd Muller: The former German striker won numerous honours, including the Ballon d'Or and the 1974 World Cup. His prolific goal-scoring record remains legendary.

  • Eusebio: Portugal's greatest-ever striker scored an astounding 638 goals in his career and achieved remarkable success with Benfica.

  • Luis Suarez: The modern-day striker has been a player to beat in his primer, winning the Prestigious treble with Barcelona in 2015


These players have made quite a name for themselves as the new generation strikers have been inspired by them, During the mid-50s 50's style of football was different but the new players have found a way to excel using the same techniques as these legends.


Striker is a very important position in a team. No matter who your best striker is, their performance deserves praise.


Every striker deserves an award, and custom medals for them are recognition of their performance and ability. If you have a friend who plays as a striker on the team, or you're a striker, why not treat yourself to a custom medal? These medals can not only serve as a symbol of the striker's status but can also be used to decorate your room.


All the strikers have done a great job and deserve praise.



Strikers continue to shape the game and create unforgettable memories. Long may it continue. If you'd like to expand your knowledge of different football positions, check out our article on soccer positions explained, or explore the false nine position for a more in-depth look at an attacking role closely related to that of a striker.




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Πελάτης
11 Δεκ 2023

Luis Suarez has been the best amoung the given attackers but he had has a very limited time for his career. He just lacked Longetivity

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