Most penalties in Europe: Barcelona denied, mad Monaco streak continues

How do Real Madrid and their Clasico rivals fare on our leaderboard for spot-kick awards after a controversial weekend?

Barcelona were denied a penalty against Real Madrid Barcelona were denied a penalty against Real Madrid
10:56am on Monday 12th April 2021
Team FC

The biggest controversy of the weekend saw Barcelona incensed they were not awarded a penalty towards the end of El Clasico against Real Madrid.

Martin Braithwaite tangled with Ferland Mendy in the penalty box but a spot-kick was not awarded.

Madrid then held on to win 2-1 despite a late red card for Casemiro.

Our La Liga rankings for penalties, though, suggest it is Madrid who have missed out most when it comes to spot-kicks this season.

Milan remain top of our overall standings tracking the most penalties in Europe, but Monaco are making major moves after a remarkable streak.

Monaco have received four penalties in their last two Ligue 1 matches against Metz (a 4-0 win) and Dijon (a 3-0 win), two in each game.

Monaco scored three of the four and have received nine penalties since the start of 2021, surging up the standings in our intriguing list.

For good measure, they won a penalty shoot-out in the Coupe de France last week too.

There are now eight teams in Europe who have reached double figures, with Milan, Monaco, Villarreal, Strasbourg and Leicester City being joined by three new teams in the past week - Gladbach, Lens and Metz.

READ MORE: Who are the Champions League all-time top scorers?

There are not many subjects that produce more debate among football players, coaches and fans than the award of penalties.

VAR entering the game has led to an intense discussion over referees, spot-kicks and the process behind how they are awarded.

But arguments about which teams have received the most penalties have been around for decades.

We have looked into the data for the 2020/21 season to find which teams have the most penalties awarded, penalties scored and penalties missed.

READ MORE: European Golden Shoe standings

Having taken the top five leagues in Europe – the Premier League, La Liga, Serie A, Ligue 1 and the Bundesliga – into account, here is what we found.


2020/21 Penalties received and scored: Top 20

TeamPenalties ReceivedPenalties scored
Leicester City108
Man Utd98
Real Sociedad97
Real Betis96
Real Valladolid87
RB Leipzig86
Man City85

Milan were helped hugely by penalties awarded as they made a flying start to the Serie A season, with an astonishing 16 given in their favour - the most in Europe.

Stefano Pioli's side were initially poor at converting those and have four league penalties missed this season.

But turning to Franck Kessie has helped hugely, as he has now scored eight of his nine efforts from 12 yards this season.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic has taken six of Milan's league spot-kicks and is responsible for three of the misses, with Hakan Calhanoglu netting his only penalty attempt.

Milan had received penalties in two straight games, one in the 2-1 win over Roma and another to salvage a last-gasp 1-1 draw against Udinese on March 3, with Kessie scoring both.

But they have not received a spot-kick since then in Serie A.

Milan have found the net with 12 of their 16, but they now only hold a narrow lead over Primera Division outfit Villarreal (11) and Ligue 1 side Monaco (11) for the most penalties scored in Europe.

After Milan, the second Serie A team on our leaderboard is Sassuolo – they have eight and have scored them all, but the second-placed total in Italy remains only half that of Milan.

Leicester City have been boosted by penalties awarded. The Foxes have received 10 and scored eight of those.

READ MORE: Premier League top scorers - who will win the Golden Boot?

Real Sociedad and Real Betis are second to Villarreal in La Liga with nine penalty awards apiece.

Gladbach have the most penalties in the Bundesliga with 10. Bayern and RB Leipzig share second place with eight apiece.

Lyon have the best penalty conversion record in Europe this season with nine out of nine. Memphis Depay has scored 7/7, with Houssem Aouar netting both of his efforts.

Which team has had the most penalties in the Premier League?

PL penalties received and scored - All 20 teams

TeamPenalties ReceivedPenalties scored
Leicester City108
Man Utd98
Man City85
Aston Villa43
Sheffield United43
Crystal Palace33
West Brom22
West Ham21

VAR was in the spotlight this weekend during Tottenham v Man Utd but there were no Premier League penalties awarded in the most recent matchday.

Overall, though, spot-kicks in England’s top-flight this season have been coming thick and fast.

Jurgen Klopp and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer were involved in a debate this season over the penalties awarded to Man Utd.

Liverpool have not exactly fared badly, having been given six Premier League penalties and scoring all of them, with Mohamed Salah (6/6) lethal from the spot.

However, Man Utd have been awarded three more penalties than their rivals.

READ MORE: Who has the most assists in Europe?

Bruno Fernandes scored a penalty as Man Utd beat Newcastle 3-1 on February 21 and then netted another in the shock 2-0 derby win over Man City.

It means United have now received nine league penalties this season and scored eight, moving up to second in England's top flight. The Portugal star has taken every spot-kick.

The penalty award against City came after a fresh controversy at Stamford Bridge the previous week, with Solskjaer suggesting Chelsea had influenced referees.

Leicester are only one clear of Man Utd at the top. Amazingly, all of the Foxes' penalties came last year - they are yet to receive one in 2021.

Chelsea are also one of the highest-placed teams, with nine penalties awarded and seven converted.

The Blues have received four penalties since February 4 against Tottenham, Southampton, Sheffield United and Everton, all of which have been scored (Jorginho 3, Mason Mount 1).

Man City have also fared well with eight penalties awarded, though Kevin De Bruyne is responsible for two of the three misses from Pep Guardiola's side.

Most of the sides near the top of the table in England's top flight this season have been boosted by spot-kicks.

That perhaps makes West Ham's challenge for a Champions League place even more impressive – with David Moyes' men contending near the top despite only receiving two penalties.

They did get a rare one against Leeds on March 8. Jesse Lingard missed it, but scored the rebound.

West Ham’s record of two penalties received and one scored puts them bottom of the standings.

Fulham have missed three of their five penalties awarded – mistakes they cannot afford in a difficult fight against the drop.

Arsenal improved to 6/6 when Alexandre Lacazette netted a crucial penalty in the 2-1 comeback North London derby win over Tottenham on March 14.

Spurs have only had four penalties, all of which have been scored by England captain Harry Kane.

Which team has had the most penalties in La Liga?

La Liga penalties received and scored

TeamPenalties ReceivedPenalties scored
Real Sociedad97
Real Betis96
Real Valladolid87
Atletico Madrid75
Athletic Bilbao54
Celta Vigo33
Real Madrid22

While Real Valladolid and Huesca were awarded penalties this weekend, the Clasico controversy dominated the headlines with Barca head coach Ronald Koeman fuming at the decision not to give his side a spot-kick.

It is the biggest clubs who sit near the top of the Premier League penalty charts, but that is not the case with all three frontrunners in La Liga.

League leaders Atletico Madrid and Koeman's Barcelona - despite their Clasico frustration - have not done too badly.

Atletico are up to seven penalties received while Barcelona have been awarded six penalties, though that is still just half the total of Villarreal.

Villarreal strengthened their position at the top of the charts by being awarded two penalties in the recent 3-0 win at Granada.

Gerard Moreno scored both of them and ended the match with a hat-trick.

The prolific forward has scored 9/9 this season, with Paco Alcacer the only Villarreal player to miss one in La Liga.

Barca have struggled to score the penalties they have received, netting just three in the league. Lionel Messi has converted three of his four spot-kicks, but Antoine Griezmann and Martin Braithwaite have missed their only attempts from 12 yards.

Joao Felix and Saul Niguez have misses to their name for Atletico, but Suarez has scored all three of their 2021 spot-kicks.

Real Madrid have not fared anywhere near as well as their title rivals, only being awarded two all season. No other team has received a lower number of penalties in La Liga than Zinedine Zidane's side.

Madrid, though, do have 100% record scoring from the spot courtesy of Sergio Ramos (2/2).

Eibar have had eight penalties given this season but have missed (5) more than they have scored (3).

Cadiz had not been awarded a La Liga penalty until February 21 this season.

But it was worth the wait when they did finally receive a penalty, as it allowed Alex Fernandez to score a last-gasp spot-kick that earned them an impressive draw away to Barcelona.

Fernandez then scored another for Cadiz in the draw with Alaves this month.

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