There are some players who just seem to score at the right time. When it truly matters, they are always there to snatch victory or salvage a stalemate from the jaws of defeat. Until now this has largely been an unquantifiable notion.
A feeling you get when watching a player, without knowing how accurate the sentiment is. Well that was then, this is now.
Because, here are the top 10 players from the Premier League since 2014/15 with the most valuable goals, quantified by points accrued.
10. Diego Costa – 52 goals – 34 points
Chelsea fans knew they had lost something special when Diego Costa departed the club, and this has only been amplified by the toiling attempts of his successors in the proceeding years, but they probably didn’t realise just how much they actually lost.
The 34 points that Costa earned his side from his 52 league goals would’ve been enough to save a club from relegation in 2010. Think about that.
9. Christian Benteke – 40 goals – 34 points
Crystal Palace fans will be bemused and furious in equal measure, and Liverpool fans won’t be too happy either, but this is surely a remnant from Christian Benteke’s glory days at Aston Villa.
A time when he was actually worth the combined £70m or so that both those clubs splashed out on him. Although, weirdly, considering the current antipathy, Benteke’s best haul in this period came during the 16/17 season with Palace, when he managed 15 strikes.
And just to be clear, the Belgian gets in ahead of Costa because it took 12 less goals for him to amass the same amount of points – thus making them far more valuable.
8. Sadio Mane: 51 goals – 35 points
The Senegalese international came to the Premier League at the start of the 2014/15 season, and has reached double figures in the goals column for each of the four seasons he’s completed.
His current tally of seven puts him well on his way to retaining this record. His best total so far (13) came in his debut campaign for Liverpool, and he is one of those player who seems to find another level of composure in the dying seconds of a game.
7. Eden Hazard: 54 goals – 38 points
Another one that’s hardly surprising, though it is worth noting that the persisting knock – at least until his start to this season – on Eden Hazard has been his lack of goalscoring chops.
And yet, here he is, providing 38 points for his team from his 54 goals. How about that, eh?
6. Riyad Mahrez: 44 goals – 39 points
We all knew that Riyad Mahrez was a vital cog in the Leicester City machine, but maybe we didn’t acknowledge this enough. Because 39 points is a worthy, worthy haul.
And, with 17 of those 44 goals coming in that Premier League title winning season of 2015/16, the value of those points cannot be understated.
5. Romelu Lukaku: 75 goals – 40 points
He may have a propensity to go missing in the biggest games. He may not be giant killer. He may pray on the weak and defenceless for the majority of his goals. But it’s definitely paid off here for Romelu Lukaku.
With those 40 points, if he wanted to, the Manchester United man, who’s also played for Everton during this time, could set himself up as his own club, just to perpetually survive relegation. Food for thought.
4. Alexis Sanchez: 63 goals – 40 points
With just three Premier League goals for the Red Devils thus far, it’s evident that almost all those club-saving 40 points were garnered for Arsenal.
In his current malaise, it’s easy to forgot just how potent Alexis Sanchez was for the Gunners. Never dipping below 13 goals in his three completed campaigns, the Chilean’s greatest haul came in 2016/17 – when he scored an astonishing 24, providing 11 assists to boot.
3. Sergio Aguero: 99 goals – 44 points
Sergio Aguero has comfortably scored the second most goals on this list, but is only good enough for third place.
In this case, unfortunately what has undone him is the quality of his team during this period. The Argentine is a goalscoring phenomenon, but clearly far too often those scores come in games which the Citizens would romp home in regardless.
2. Jamie Vardy: 67 goals – 46 points
Obviously, as with Mahrez, Jamie Vardy owes much of these stats to that title winning season of 2015/16, in which he scored 24 goals, having netted just five teams in the prior campaign.
However, with Vardy, it’s even more specific than that. Indeed, you could attribute a large portion of those 46 points to that 11-game goal stretch which propelled Leicester at the start of the 15/16 season. We haven’t seen anything like it since.
1. Harry Kane: 114 goals – 73 points
Wow. Just take that in. 73 points…WOW.
That is ridiculous. Of course, it helps that this time frame coincides perfectly with Harry Kane’s rise – in the season prior he managed just three league goals. But still, one more victory claiming score, and the Englishman would have a big enough points total to beat Manchester United to the title in 1996/97.
That’s pretty incredible. All hail Harry Kane.