Marcus Rashford, Aubameyang, Dembele and the Worst Finishers in Europe’s Top Five Leagues

Marcus Rashford, Aubameyang, Dembele and the Worst Finishers in Europe’s Top Five Leagues

Martin Moses
updated at February 13, 2024 at 11:54 AM
In this article:
Marcus Rashford logo
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Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang logo
P. Aubameyang
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  • Marcus Rashford leads a concerning list of the worst finishers in Europe's top five leagues
  • Rashford's loss of form has coincided with Manchester United's early season struggles
  • The statistics are a result of the expected goals a player is supposed to score

The race for top honours in different leagues is already in full flow more than 10 game weeks into the new season. Early season contenders have already emerged with a few surprise packages competing with the 'big boys,' like Girona in Spain.

Last season's top scorer and the recipient of the Gerd Muller Award, Erling Haaland, has continued from where he left off. Harry Kane has also settled well into his new surroundings, just like his international compatriot, Jude Bellingham.

Erling Haaland, Marcus Rashford, Ousmane Dembele, Iago Aspas
Manchester City striker Erling Haaland. Photo by Ryan Crockett.
Source: Getty Images

But on the other end are finishers who should probably have better tallies than what they have. Statistics from Planet Football show that they have worrying tallies based on their expected goals (xG).

The stats show their xG underperformance, which means they are wasting chances other players would score, or they have a lower-than-average finishing ability, as explained by Coaches Voice.

The list contains players who play in forward positions.

Ousmane Dembele - Paris Saint-Germain

The French star is yet to hit the heights that were expected of him when Barcelona forked out an excess of €105m for him in 2017.

He moved to Paris Saint-Germain this season, where he has yet to score a single goal, with his xG underperformance standing at -2.3.

Ianis Hagi - Alaves

Alaves are currently in midtable, having scored 10 goals in 12 games, but it should be more had Ianis Hagi converted his chances.

The attacking midfielder has an xG underperformance of -2.4, including the missed penalty on his debut vs. Almeria.

Cyle Larin - Mallorca

Mallorca are currently flirting with the relegation places, with only two points separating them from 18th place. They would possibly be higher on the standings had their new Canadian striker taken his chances.

Larin has a -2.5 xG underperformance rating.

Marcus Rashford - Manchester United

No player in Europe was near Rashford's incredible standards immediately after the Qatar World Cup. But his form waned gradually as the season drew to a close before he hit a new low this season.

He last scored in September and with his xG underperformance standing at -2.6, Erik ten Hag's side has struggled for form this season.

Jeremy Le Douaron - Brest

Brest have done magnificently well for themselves this season, sitting in sixth place in Ligue 1. They have scored 11 goals in the process, but it could have been more if Le Douaron didn't have an underperforming xG of -3.2. He only has one goal, with only 10 out of his 28 shots on target.

Rodrygo - Real Madrid

Karim Benzema's departure at the end of last season meant that Los Blancos needed another person to lead the attack. Lucky for them, Bellingham has hit the ground running, but Carlo Ancelotti could use some upturn in form for Rodrygo.

The Brazilian's underperformance xG is -3.2.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang - Marseille

After being largely unused by Chelsea last season, the Gabonese striker went off to France in search of regular game time. He has found the game time, but his struggles in front of goal continue.

He only has one goal in Ligue 1 this season, with an underperformance xG of -3.5

Iago Aspas

Iago Aspas' frustrations reached boiling point last weekend when he knocked down the VAR pitchside monitor.

For someone who scored double figures since he returned to the club in 2015, it is rather baffling that he is yet to get on the scoreboard this season. His xG underperformance is -3.8.

Ten Hag backs Rashford to rediscover form

Sports Brief previously reported that Marcus Rashford is struggling in front of goal after his goal-scoring form dipped close to the end of last season and is yet to recover, but Erik ten Hag is confident in his player.

His struggles this season have led to growing calls from fans and pundits to have Erik ten Hag drop him until he rediscovers himself, but the manager is adamant and is retaining his position game by game.

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Martin Moses
Martin Moses is a sports journalist with over five years of experience in media. He graduated from Multimedia University of Kenya (Bachelor of Journalism, 2017-2021)