Explained: the science behind Messi and Ronaldo's free-kicks

Apr 24, 2020, 04:24 PM

Welcome back, Squawka Talker listeners.

In this special episode, Jake Entwistle is joined by Dr. Rajpal Brar, DPT of 3CB Performance to breakdown the free-kick technique of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo from a biomechanics perspective.

How do their techniques differ? Why is Cristiano Ronaldo struggling to score? From the run-up to ball-striking and what happens next, every step and every muscle is discussed.

If you enjoyed the audio description, then be sure to subscribe to Raj's YouTube channel (3CB Performance) for some visual explanations.


00:04:20 | Is there a reason for Cristiano Ronaldo's dramatic run-up?

"Ronaldo’s routine allows muscle memory to take over and his technique relies on the ‘recoil effect’ to generate shot power"

00:13:55 | Why Lionel Messi 'sprains' his ankle when taking free-kicks

“That's what makes Messi incredible...he's an artist”

00:20:30 | Why makes Messi the current free-kick king?

00:27:23 | How to do a knuckleball free-kick and why do footballers use it?

00:35:55 | Why do Bruno Fernandes and Jorginho use the hop, skip, jump, score penalty-taking technique?

00:44:05 | Explaining Messi's unique scoop technique and Happy Gilmore hip artistry

"That's the most mobile position for the hip in a human body!"

00:49:46 | Why can't Cristiano Ronaldo score free-kicks right now?

00:56:40 | Favourite Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo free-kicks

"It might be the best free-kick I've ever seen... it really summed up what Messi has become."