The Very Best Of Hakan Calhanoglu: Bayer Leverkusen Free-Kick Master’s Greatest Hits…So Far (Videos)

Chris Wright

1st, December 2014


By Chris Wright

Germany Soccer Bundesliga

No doubt you’ll have caught wind of the name by now, but it would appear that first Hamburg and now Bayer Leverkusen have procured themselves something of a gem in the shape of Turkish midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu.

Indeed, his name would probably be reverberating on a few more people’s lips outside of Germany were it a little easier to pronounce (“Hakan Shal-an-ollu”, we think we’re right in saying).

Anyway, the 20-year-old playmaker is fast cementing his reputation as one of the sweetest set-piece takers in the game, having dispatched a veritable panoply of delicious dead balls since he began to make waves with Hamburg at the start of last season – his latest being a simply perfect curling strike in Leverkusen’s 5-1 mauling of Köln at the weekend…

You don’t have to go back far to find another equally sumptuous strike, with Calhanoglu sticking a pearler past Schalke ‘keeper Ralf Fährmann at the tail-end of October…

With struggling Hamburg narrowly avoiding relegation via the play-off on away goals the season previous, it was Calhanoglu who provided several of the few highlights – with his monstrous 41-metre free-kick against Borussia Dortmund in February not only ending a seven-game losing streak for HSV but also going on to be voted as the Bundesliga Goal of the Season…

As if warming up for his 41-metre masterpiece, Calhanoglou (just about) managed to thwack one in from a mere 38 metres out against Wolfsburg a couple of months beforehand…

And last but by no means least, coming right back at the beginning of the 2013/14 season, Calhanoglou scored the free-kick that started tongues wagging by tucking away a textbook curler against newly-promoted Braunschweig…

Now, Pies would posit that Juninho Pernambucano is perhaps the finest, most consistent striker of a set-piece we’ve seen in European football in the past 15 years or so, but it would appear that Herr Calhanoglou is well on his way to emulating the diminutive Brazilian master.

Long may it continue, that’s what we say!

Posted in Bundesliga, Featured, Newsnow, Skills, Videos

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  1. London Broncos Rugby League Fan says:

    A quite wonderful array of freekicks. Thank you for this footy education Pies!….The knucklepunch free kick a la cr7 was particularly great to watch at all angles and especially from the kicker’s view high up. Thanks Pies!

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