Premier League 2015-16 — the five best goals


London (AFP) – Following the conclusion of the 2015-16 Premier League season, AFP Sport selects the five most memorable goals from the campaign:

Christian Benteke (Manchester United 3-1 Liverpool)

Belgium striker Benteke endured a dismal debut season at Liverpool following his 32.5 million pounds ($46.9 million, 41.1 million euros) transfer from Aston Villa, but he netted a stupendous scissors kick in their defeat at Old Trafford in September. With Liverpool trailing 2-0, substitute Jordon Ibe sent a cross into the box from the right wing that was headed into the air by United centre-back Daley Blind at the near post. Loitering at the back post, Benteke readjusted his feet and met the ball with a blistering mid-air volley that flew into the top-right corner.

Cuco Martina (Southampton 4-0 Arsenal)

Martina opened the scoring in memorable fashion in Southampton’s stunning Boxing Day demolition of Arsenal to become the first player from Curacao to score in the English top flight. Ryan Bertrand’s cross from the left was headed clear at the near post by the stooping Per Mertesacker, but Martina, cantering infield from right-back, met it on the full around 25 yards from goal, brilliantly using the outside of his right foot to steer the ball around the dive of Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech and inside the left-hand post.

Dele Alli (Crystal Palace 1-3 Tottenham Hotspur)

The season’s outstanding strike, Alli’s sensational effort at Selhurst Park in January confirmed his emergence as the most exciting young talent in the English game. In the 84th minute, and with the score 1-1, Harry Kane’s crossfield pass to the left flank was headed back to Alli by Christian Eriksen. The Spurs number 20 took one touch to keep the ball airborne, another to flick it over the head of Palace midfielder Mile Jedinak and then spun to smash a crisp right-foot volley into the bottom-left corner from outside the box.

Jamie Vardy (Leicester City 2-0 Liverpool)

The pick of Vardy’s 24 goals, which fired Leicester to the title, was a thunderbolt at the King Power Stadium that inspired his side to victory over Liverpool. The game had reached the hour-mark without a goal when Riyad Mahrez released Vardy with a high ball into the inside-right channel from deep inside his own half. The England international striker, running in behind Mamadou Sakho, allowed the ball to bounce once before unleashing a ferocious, dipping shot from the right-hand apex of the area that flashed over Simon Mignolet and into the net.

Dimitri Payet (West Ham United 2-2 Crystal Palace)

Payet turned the Boleyn Ground into his own personal playground following his close-season move from Marseille and the France international scored his best goal of the campaign in last month’s draw with Palace. From a free-kick around 22 yards from goal, and slightly to the left of centre, Payet used his right instep to whip a magnificent, curling shot over the wall and into the top-right corner.

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