10 longest EPL goal droughts

Timothy Wee Timothy Wee

FOX Sports Asia celebrates Andy Carroll and Shane Long ending their respective goal drought by bringing you the ten longest EPL goal droughts.

Hardly the consummate footballing role model, Spanish striker Diego Costa is still an effective footballer because he delivers when it matters the most – on the pitch!

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The ex-Chelsea hitman got off the mark in his second Atletico Madrid debut against Lleida Esportiu – scoring within five minutes after coming on as a 64th minute sub in the 4-0 Copa del Rey first-leg tie.

The 29-year-old might have left the London club under dubious circumstances, but he still covered himself in glory as the Blues’ top scorer last season with 20 league goals.

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The same, however, cannot be said for all EPL players. Particularly the goal-shy strikers.

Sure, we have all heard managers coming out to defend their misfiring forwards. However, there are only so many excuses that we can stomach before losing faith.

Below are the ten EPL players who you would not bet on scoring even if their life depended on it…

Fernando Torres (Chelsea)

Games without scoring: 18

Generally when a club forks out a then-record £50 million on a striker, they do not expect the player to go on an eighteen-game goal drought.

But that is exactly what Chelsea got after signing Fernando Torres from Liverpool.

The Spanish striker famously went eighteen EPL games without a goal between September 2011 to the following March and struggled to get his goal scoring rhythm while with the Blues.

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Torres only managed twenty goals in 110 league appearances despite winning the FA Cup, Champions League and Europa League.

Siem de Jong (Newcastle)

Games without scoring: 18

The Dutch are renowned for their attacking play, or more importantly, goals. However, that was not what Newcastle got when they signed Ajax captain Siem de Jong.

The attacking midfielder, who doubled up as a striker, incredibly went the entire 2015/16 season without a single league goal.

Is it any wonder then that Newcastle were relegated that season?

Georgios Samaras (Manchester City)

Games without scoring: 19

It is easy to point fingers at the misfiring striker when things are not going swimmingly well with your team; but in the case of Georgios Samaras, those accusations are probably well founded.

The ex-Manchester City forward was criticised by his own teammate Richard Dunne in 2007 while in midst of a nineteen-game goal drought that stretched between January to December 2007.

Mercifully, Celtic came in for the Greek striker and ended his league goal dry spell.

Julius Aghahowa (Wigan Athletic)

Games without scoring: 20

Despite establishing himself as one of the top scorers in the Ukrainian Premier League with Shakhtar Donetsk, Julius Aghahowa failed to translate his goal scoring form to England.

After signing in 2007 for Wigan Athletic, the Nigerian winger/striker did not score a single goal in his one-and-a-half year stay!

Strangely enough, though known for his outrageous back-flip goal celebrations, Aghahowa did not get a single chance to showcase it in the EPL before leaving for Kayserispor in June 2008.

Diego Forlan (Manchester United)

Games without scoring: 23

To this day, Diego Forlan is still a striker that defies expectations (and explanation).

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To the Spanish fans, the Uruguayan forward will be revered for winning the Europa League with Atletico Madrid.

But to Manchester United fans, Forlan will always be remembered as the flop who went on 23 games without finding the back of the net between Jan 2002 to Oct 2002.

He finally scored his first league, and the match-winning, goal against Southampton after coming on as a 79th minute sub.

Dong-Gook Lee (Middlesborough)

Games without scoring: 23

While we celebrate any Asian players who do make the step up to English football, there is little to cheer about in Lee Dong-Gook case.

The South Korean, who is a record scorer in the K-League, left Middlesborough after one and a half year without registering a single league goal in mid-2008.

Lee did, however, score two cup goals during his time in England.

Shane Long (Southampton)

Games without scoring: 26

Eleven months is a long time in our books. In fact, that is almost how long it takes us to crown a new EPL champion.

For Southampton’s Shane Long though, eleven months (February 2017 to January 2018) is exactly how long it took him to score a league goal.

Still, we are happy for the Republic of Ireland striker that he broke his 26-game scoring duck with the first goal in Tuesday’s 1-2 defeat to Crystal Palace. He last scored against Sunderland last February after coming on as a sub.

Nile Ranger (Newcastle United)

Games without scoring: 26

After showing promise as a youngster with Newcastle in the Championship, Nile Ranger was rewarded with a spot on the bench upon their return to the EPL in the 2010/11 season.

Despite the opportunity, the currently Southend United forward failed to capitalise on it.

Ranger stayed for another two seasons with the Toons before they realised that they had a striking dud on their hands. He scored one League Cup goal in his three-year stay on Tyneside.

Mattias Jonson (Norwich City)

Games without scoring: 28

Having appeared in two World Cups and one European Championship, you would expect Swedish winger Mattias Jonson to have the quality to be banging in goals in the EPL.

We are pretty sure that is what Norwich thought when they signed him back in 2004, but you know what people say about best laid plans…

Instead, the then-30-year-old struggled to hit the back of the net in 28 league games. Unsurprisingly, he left after one season when Norwich went down the EPL trapdoor.

El Hadji Diouf (Liverpool)

Games without scoring: 18 (August 2002 to March 2003) and 34 (March 2003 to April 2004)

More famous for finding the target with his spit than the ball, El Hadji Diouf is such a flop that he had not one, but two goal droughts during his time with Liverpool.

Universally hated by the fans and even his own Red teammates, it is not difficult to see why when you are not doing what the club pays you to do.

After scoring a brace against the Southampton on his home debut, the Senegalese striker went eighteen league games without a goal between August 2002 to the following March.

Though he did score again against Bolton that season, it ultimately proved to be his last league goal in red as he then embarked on a 34-league game goal drought that lasted from March 2003 to April 2004!

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Needless to say, there was probably little to no tears in the dressing room when he left for Bolton in mid-2004.

**Bonus**

Danny Simpson (Leicester City)

Games without scoring: 191

Here is a fun fact; did you know that Leicester’s Danny Simpson has never scored in the EPL?

As it stands, the former Manchester United, Newcastle and Queens Park Rangers defender holds the all-time record EPL goal drought for an outfield player – 191 games and counting!

Though to be fair, Simpson is a defender after all…

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