10 players who only scored worldies as goal-shy Kovacic nets Chelsea stunner

Mateo Kovacic added to his Chelsea highlight reel with another stunner as they beat RB Salzburg 2-1 in the Champions League.

The Croatia international found the top corner with his weaker left foot to give the Blues the lead in Austria on Tuesday (October 25) night. It was only the fifth goal he's scored since joining from Real Madrid – but all of them have seemed to be eye-catching, long-range goals.

Kovacic has fallen into the category of players who rarely find the back of the net but when they do, they do it in style. With that in mind, Daily Star Sport is looking at 10 other stars who only ever scored worldies.

READ MORE: Mateo Kovacic's shanked strike flies in – and Chelsea fans gobsmacked it came off

Ruben Neves

It seems someone told Ruben Neves he couldn't shoot from inside the box when he was growing up because since joining Wolves in 2017, he's netted banger after banger.

The six goals he scored in their Championship-winning campaign were all ridiculous strikes, with the most memorable an outrageous volley against Derby County.

Stepping up to the Premier League hasn't phased him, having netted beauties against the likes of Liverpool and Manchester United.

Most of his goals from 18 yards or less have been penalties, which he's also phenomenal at taking.

Who have we missed off the list? Let us know in the comments section.

Philippe Coutinho

It hasn't been the return to English football Philippe Coutinho would've been hoping for at Aston Villa so far, but he'll always have his world-class spell with Liverpool.

The Brazilian magician scored an impressive 54 goals in his 201 Reds appearances, and more often than not they were from outside the box. There was little that could be done when he took aim from range, hence why Barcelona forked out a reported £142million to sign him in 2018.

Since then the goals have dried up somewhat, but Coutinho certainly still has something special in his locker.

Nemanja Matic

Before Kovacic at Chelsea there was Nemanja Matic, who was just as adept at walloping the ball from way out and sending it flying into the roof of the net.

He even did so in the high-pressure environment of the FA Cup final against Tottenham in 2017, helping the Blues to a 4-2 win.

Blink and you'll have missed his 30-yard thunderbolt which cannoned in off the underside of the crossbar. It was so good that it earned a nomination for that year's Puskas Award.


Few have been able to hit a ball like former Blackburn Rovers midfielder Tugay could – when he hit them, they stayed hit.

He only scored 12 goals in English football but literally of them were 10/10 finishes, with the closest coming from 17 yards out and the rest all from outside the box.

And the Turk did so while smoking "80 cigarettes a day", according to his former Rovers team-mate Craig Hignett. Tugay looks totally different now as a family man.


John Arne Riise

Liverpool legend John Arne Riise had a left foot like a traction engine, so much so that he once broke Alan Smith's leg with a shot during a game against Manchester United.

The full-back had a knack for creeping in at the back post and grabbing a goal, doing so 31 times in his seven-year Anfield stay.

However, Riise scored more worldies for Roma. Unfortunately for Fulham, he never bagged after joining them in 2011.

Thomas Hitzlsperger

In a similar vein to Tugay, German defensive mid Thomas Hitzlsperger's goals were few and far between but all of them left jaws on the floor.

His 12 goals for Villa between 2000 and 2005 were each as good as the last and he then reminded Prem fans what he could do with West Ham later in his career.

A left-footed strike from 25 yards against Burnley in February 2011 was a trademark Hitzlsperger goal.

Youri Tielemans

You daren't let Youri Tielemans have free rein on the edge of the box because you know he'll punish you every single time.

And the Belgium international saved his best goal to date to win the 2021 FA Cup for Leicester City as they edged Chelsea 1-0 at Wembley.

If he'd never scored again Tielemans would've still been happy but he's continued to rifle them. His curling effort against United last season sticks out.

He topped that with his volley in the 4-0 win at Wolves at the weekend which was simply unstoppable. It looks likely he's Arsenal bound come the end of the season.

Jonjo Shelvey

Jonjo Shelvey has never been a player who's set the world alight but his consistent performances have seen him tick along for Swansea City and now Newcastle after leaving Liverpool.

There's nothing particularly flashy about his game, aside from the screamers he seems to score once every six months.

He's another who only needs a split second to let fly from distance and when he does, it usually spells trouble for the opposition.

Laurent Robert

The player with perhaps the best Premier League goals highlight reel is former Magpies winger Laurent Robert.

As a set-piece specialist, Robert scored his fair share of free-kicks, with no angle too tight or no distance too far to stop him from arrowing the ball in.

He also had an eye for goal from open play and had racked them up for PSG too, but the goals dried up for the Frenchman as his career wound down after leaving St James' Park.

Ricardo Quaresma

Portugal winger Ricardo Quaresma was always playing in the shadow of team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo on the international stage.

While his career didn't take off like the Red Devils legend's did, Quaresma had just as much skill and trickery which saw him score countless worldies for club and country.

He repeatedly used the trivela outside of the boot shot to lethal effect, most notably at the 2018 World Cup against Iran.


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