Most penalty missed player in the world

Most penalty missed player in the world

With 48 penalty misses in his career, Gyan holds the unfortunate record for having missed the most penalties by any player in world football. While he has scored over 100 goals for Ghana and converted many penalties as well, it’s the crucial ones he’s missed in big tournaments that fans remember most.

2010 World Cup Quarterfinal vs Uruguay

Arguably the most infamous of Gyan’s penalty misses came in the 2010 World Cup quarterfinals against Uruguay. With the score at 1-1 in extra time, Luis Suarez deliberately handled the ball on the goal line, denying Ghana a certain winning goal. Gyan stepped up to take the resulting penalty, but his shot cannoned off the crossbar and stayed out. Uruguay went on to win the shootout and eliminate Ghana. This miss has haunted Gyan and Ghana football ever since.

2015 Africa Cup of Nations Final vs Ivory Coast

Ghana met Ivory Coast in the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations final in Equatorial Guinea. With the score at 0-0 after 120 goalless minutes, the match went to penalties. Gyan missed his kick in the shootout as Ivory Coast prevailed 9-8 to be crowned African champions. Ghana were left devastated once again in a major final.


So what has led to Gyan’s struggles from the penalty spot in pressure situations? Some reasons that have been suggested include:

  • Over-eagerness to blast the ball hard instead of placing it
  • Losing composure and technique in high stakes moments
  • Shooting straight at the goalkeeper too often
  • Failure to change strategy based on goalkeeper’s movement

For a striker of his quality, Gyan’s overall penalty conversation rate of around 75% isn’t terribly low. But his tendency to fluff lines in the big games has certainly left a blot on his career.

Advice for Punters

What lessons can punters take from Gyan’s misses when betting on penalties, shootouts or football specials?

  • Consider a player’s psychological make-up and temperament in pressure situations
  • Research their penalty record in important tournaments and finals
  • Don’t assume the best players or top scorers will always convert penalties
  • Watch replays of a player’s previous penalty misses to identify flaws

While Asamoah Gyan enjoyed many successes, his World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations heartbreaks make him football’s poster boy for penalty taking gone wrong. Gamblers certainly need to account for the psychological aspect of football betting.

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