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10th Feb 2016

Willian takes inspiration for deadly free-kicks from two of the world’s best players

Good role models

Kevin McGillicuddy

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

And if you want to try and be the best free-kick taker in world football, then you may be better off looking to two men who knew how to strike a ball perfectly to get it up and over a wall from almost any distance.

This season Chelsea’s Willian has been absolutely deadly from dead-ball situations in case you didn’t know.

The Blues midfielder has scored some scorchers this season, and today’s he’s revealed that he tries to emulate two of the best place-kicking experts of the last 20 years when he lines up in front of a terrified wall of defenders.

Six of his eight goals this term have been from free-kicks, and he told  that a Premier League legend, and a Barcelona genius, are the men to thank for his unerring accuracy.

“Ronaldinho and David Beckham, they took free-kicks and took them very well, so there are some players I always try to follow and to learn important things from so that I am able to score goals.”

Beckham’s technique was probably one of the most unusual in world football, while Ronaldinho also had a special knack for putting huge amounts of top spin on a ball to fool defenders, and goalkeepers time and time again.

For Chelsea fans who have endured a miserable season, Willian, and his magical right boot, has been one of the highlights.

And those same fans have two men, whom the club were hurt by numerous times in the past, to thank for it.

Funny world.

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