Who were the best strikers from the World Cup group stage? Featuring Van Persie and Benzema

Arsenal and Manchester United current stars and transfer targets both feature.

The strikers are arguably the most important players in any team because they’re the players who have to get on the end of the midfield’s hard work and score the goals.

There were some awesome strikes during the World Cup group stage with Lionel Messi, Manchester United’s Robin Van Persie and ex-Everton star Tim Cahill all scoring some awesome goals.

We’ve decided to take a look at five different areas to see who were the best strikers in each.


Lionel Messi Argentina FW 4 3 243
Thomas Müller Germany FW 4 3 262
Neymar Brazil FW 4 3 249
Karim Benzema France FW 3 3 270
Robin Van Persie Netherlands FW 3 2 166

Three players currently lead the race for the World Cup’s golden boot. Louis van Gaal will probably be kicking himself for not being able to go after Bayern Munich’s Thomas Muller for Manchester United, but Robin Van Persie has three goals himself and isn’t far behind.


  CountryPosGoal AssistAppsMins
Karim Benzema France FW 2 3 270
Josip Drmic Switzerland FW 2 3 169
Emmanuel Emenike Nigeria FW 2 3 270
Joel Campbell Costa Rica FW 1 3 229
Edinson Cavani Uruguay FW 1 3 270

There is double reason for Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger to be happy looking at this list. Transfer target Karim Benzema is showing good composure in the final third while Joel Campbell is doing everything possible to feature for the Gunners next season.


Keisuke Honda Japan FW 227 3 270
Lionel Messi Argentina FW 209 3 243
Alexis Sánchez Chile FW 206 3 270
Neymar Brazil FW 190 3 249
Cristiano Ronaldo Portugal FW 162 3 270

We’ve chosen touches as a stat to look at because it shows how much a player is getting into a game. It’s easy to see why the likes of Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United were all linked with Honda based on this as he mixes with some of the best players in the world for this section.

Accurate Passes

  CountryPosAccurate PassAppsMins
Keisuke Honda Japan FW 127 3 270
Lionel Messi Argentina FW 118 3 243
Bryan Ruiz Costa Rica FW 96 3 254
Neymar Brazil FW 84 3 249
Karim Benzema France FW 78 3 270

Honda also features with more accurate passes than any other player. A possible reason could be his ability to drop off and play in midfield, which is something he’s very experienced at doing. It’s a case of familiar names though ex-Fulham star Bryan Ruiz also protected the ball well.

Tackles Won

  CountryPosWon TackleAppsMins
Admir Mehmedi Switzerland FW 8 3 225
Ivica Olic Croatia FW 8 3 228
Georgios Samaras Greece FW 5 3 270
Keisuke Honda Japan FW 4 3 270
Peter Odemwingie Nigeria FW 4 3 191

Although tackling is predominantly a defensive trait, it’s important for strikers to tackle well and win the ball back high up the pitch to stop the opposition from building pressure. No player was more effective at doing this than Switzerland’s Admir Mehmedi.

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch