10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

Set-pieces in soccer are moments of sheer precision, where a player’s skill can turn the tide of a match in an instant.

From free-kicks to corners, these opportunities demand finesse, accuracy, and a keen understanding of the game.

In this article, we dig into the domain of set-piece mastery, analyzing the top 10 players known for their abilities in dead-ball situations.

1. Lionel Messi

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

Often considered the greatest footballer of all time, proves his genius not only in open play but also in set-pieces.

The Inter Miami star is unrivaled when it comes to delivering danger around the penalty box.

His vision and technique allow him to be a formidable threat from any distance, making him a true master of set-piece execution.

Messi’s exceptional talent extends to dead-ball situations, where his ability to bend and place the ball with precision makes him the most dangerous player in the world around the penalty box.

2. James Ward-Prowse

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

James Ward-Prowse is regarded as one of the most lethal direct set-piece takers in the English Premier League.

He is renowned for his dead-ball expertise and consistently delivers pinpoint and highly threatening balls from various set-piece situations.

Pep Guardiola, the esteemed manager of Manchester City, has lauded Ward-Prowse as the finest free-kick taker he has ever witnessed.

His reputation precedes him, with his wicked delivery from both corners and free-kicks proving to be a pivotal asset for West Ham and the England national team alike.

3. Trent Alexander-Arnold

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

Liverpool’s dynamic full-back has a lethal right foot that poses a constant threat to opposing defenders.

His skill in curling in crosses and delivering dangerous free-kicks has been pivotal in Liverpool’s attacking strategy, contributing significantly to their success.

Famed for his overlapping runs, pinpoint long balls and wicked crosses, Alexander-Arnold’s mastery of set-pieces is well-known throughout the footballing world.

His adeptness in providing assists further solidifies his reputation not only as one of the premier right-backs but also as a formidable playmaker on the pitch.

Despite his defensive role, Alexander-Arnold’s influence transcends traditional expectations, as he consistently shapes matches with his exceptional skill set.

4. Kevin De Bruyne

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

Kevin De Bruyne is a midfield maestro for Manchester City, known for his incredible vision, pinpoint passing, and dead-ball expertise. He’s considered one of the best midfielders in the world because he’s just so good at everything he does.

His passing is out of this world, setting up beautiful goals with his incredible range.

But what’s even more impressive is his skill in set-pieces. Whether he’s whipping in perfect crosses or curling in goals from free-kicks, De Bruyne is always a threat during dead-ball situations.

In short, De Bruyne’s ability to control the game with his passing and then make magic happen during set-pieces makes him one of the most dangerous players on the field.

5. Joshua Kimmich

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

Joshua Kimmich is a fantastic midfielder for Bayern Munich and Germany.

He’s really good at everything he does on the pitch. Whether he’s playing defense or midfield, he’s always making a big impact.

One thing he’s especially good at is set-pieces.

He’s got a deadly right foot, so whether he’s taking long-range free kicks or sending in corners, he’s always causing trouble for the other team. His deliveries are just so hard to defend against.

Kimmich is not only a great player in open play, but he’s also a huge threat during set-piece situations, making him a key player for both club and country.



6. Toni Kroos

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

The stalwart midfielder for both Real Madrid and the German national team, is widely recognized for his exceptional passing range and set-piece expertise.

Known for his calmness under pressure, Kroos is a reliable asset during crucial moments in a match.

Kroos’ technical prowess shines through in his ability to deliver pinpoint crosses and lethal free-kicks, making him a constant threat from various set-piece situations.

Whether it’s long-range free kicks, corners, precise long balls, or curling swingers, Kroos’ repertoire is extensive, keeping defenders on their toes.

Moreover, Kroos’ passing ability is second to none.

His vision and precision allow him to dictate the tempo of the game, setting up scoring opportunities with remarkable ease. His proficiency in both short and long passes makes him a vital cog in any team’s midfield engine.

7. Hakan Çalhanoğlu

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

Çalhanoğlu is known for his deadly left foot, especially when it comes to set-pieces.

Ever since his days at Bayer Leverkusen and AC Milan, Çalhanoğlu has been recognized as one of the best in the game at taking set pieces.

Now playing for Inter, Çalhanoğlu has been entrusted with the responsibility of taking set-pieces, despite the presence of more established stars at San Siro.

He has proven himself more than capable of the task.

Whether it’s curling in free-kicks with finesse or whipping in dangerous crosses with power, Çalhanoğlu’s precision and technique make him a constant threat during dead-ball situations.

8. Bruno Fernandes

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

Bruno Fernandes has been a game-changer since he arrived at Old Trafford, making a significant impact with his set-piece expertise.

His ability to deliver precise crosses and deadly free-kicks has been crucial to Manchester United’s attacking strategy.

While Fernandes is best known for his penalty-taking abilities, his delivery from free-kicks is equally dangerous and often leads to scoring opportunities for United.

Whether he’s setting up teammates with pinpoint accuracy or going for a goal himself, Fernandes’ creativity and execution from dead-ball situations make him a formidable weapon on the field.

He has proven himself to be one of the best midfielders in football. His overall contribution to the game goes beyond just set pieces, as he consistently proves his vision, passing, and goal-scoring ability.

9. Dani Parejo

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

A seasoned veteran in La Liga, Dani Parejo has earned widespread recognition for his expertise in set pieces throughout his career.

Parejo’s knack for creating scoring opportunities from dead-ball situations has made him an invaluable asset for both Valencia and Villarreal.

While Parejo’s set-piece ability is well-known among La Liga fans, his skills have also caught the attention of followers of the UEFA Champions League and Europa League.

His ability to consistently deliver quality deliveries in high-pressure situations has made him a standout performer on the European stage as well.

Despite his undeniable talent and contributions to his teams, Parejo remains somewhat underrated in the broader footballing world.

10. Cristiano Ronaldo

10 Best Set-Piece Takers In Soccer | 2024

No list of set-piece takers could be considered complete without mentioning Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Portuguese superstar’s combination of athleticism, technique, and sheer determination has led to numerous goals from free-kicks and headers throughout his remarkable career.

One of the key factors behind Ronaldo’s success in set-pieces is his exceptional ability to generate immense power and spin on the ball.

This makes it incredibly challenging for goalkeepers to anticipate and save his strikes.

Also, Ronaldo’s aerial skill allows him to rise above defenders and direct the ball with pinpoint accuracy, consistently posing a threat during set-piece situations.

Other Best Set-Pieces Taker In Football

  • Vincenzo Grifo
  • Luis Alberto
  • Kieran Trippier
  • Andreas Pereira
  • Eberechi Eze
  • David Alaba
  • Julian Alvarez
  • James Maddison
  • Douglas Luiz
  • Dimitri Payet