With the group stages of Euro 2016 now over and the last 16 set, WhoScored.com have identified the five players who attempted the most shots without scoring in the opening three games of the European Championship:
Sami Khedira (Germany) – 9 shots, 0 goals
While hardly Germany’s primary attacking threat, deep-lying midfielder Sami Khedira was willing to test his luck when the opportunity presented itself against Ukraine, Poland and Northern Ireland. All in all, the Juventus mustered a combined nine shots over the three games, taking three apiece in each fixture, heralding no goals. Germany may have progressed with minimal fuss, but will need to up their game in the knockout stages to become only the third team to hold the European Championship and World Cup at the same time. Indeed, Khedira is one whose performance levels need to rise for that to come to fruition.
Kevin De Bruyne (Belgium) – 10 shots, 0 goals
Like Germany, Belgium ultimately progressed to the next round of Euro 2016 in comfortable fashion, despite an opening-group defeat to Italy. The improvement in performance came with a change in shape by Marc Wilmots, who moved Kevin De Bruyne into a central berth; the Red Devils immediately became more fluid in attack. Yet while Belgium improved, De Bruyne failed to translate his impressive showings into goals, with the Manchester City man mustering 10 shots in the group stages, which returned zero goals.
Yevhen Konoplyanka (Ukraine) – 10 shots, 0 goals
Similarly, Yevhen Konoplyanka also mustered 10 shots in the group stages of Euro 2016, yet failed to hit the back of the net. Ukraine were largely reliant on their attacking options from wide to hit opponents on the counter attack, but were routinely let down by poor finishing, ending as the only nation who failed to score in the group stages. After a commendable debut campaign with Sevilla, much was expected of the 26-year-old in France. He flattered to deceive as Ukraine crashed out with nothing more than a whimper.
David Alaba (Austria) – 11 shots, 0 goals
Many tipped Austria as dark horses for Euro 2016, yet in what was perhaps the easiest group of the competition to navigate, they finished bottom of Group F. David Alaba has won many plaudits for his versatility and attacking quality for Bayern Munich, yet he struggled to leave a lasting impact despite coming close to a blistering start to the competition after striking the woodwork in the opening exchanges of the 2-0 defeat to Hungary. Nevertheless, 11 shots in total and zero goals saw Alaba fail to live up to expectations in France.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden) – 12 shots, 0 goals
Having bagged 38 league goals last season, Sweden had hoped captain Zlatan Ibrahimovic could continue his fine goalscoring form in France. However, while the 34-year-old played a key role in Ciaran Clark’s own goal in the 1-1 draw with Republic of Ireland, Ibrahimovic failed to transfer his club form to country for the tournament, despite a fine return of 12 goals in qualifying for Euro 2016. The out-of-contract forward managed to put the ball in the net against Belgium, only for his effort to be chalked off for an alleged foul in the build up.
That effectively compounded a miserable tournament for Ibrahimovic, who gained a disappointing WhoScored.com rating of just 6.37. Only Cristiano Ronaldo (30) and Gareth Bale (17) mustered more shots than Ibrahimovic (12) in the group stages of the competition, but he managed to hit the target with just one. Manchester United fans will be hoping this is a mere blip as he edges closer to a switch to Old Trafford.
All statistics courtesy of WhoScored.com, where you can find yet more stats, including live in-game data and unique player and team ratings. You can follow all the scores, statistics, live player and team ratings with the new free-to-download WhoScored iOS app.