Dundee United striker Lawrence Shankland was back with a bang with his wonder strike against St Mirren on Saturday.
There is plenty of choice but Ian Roache has undergone the arduous task of narrowing the Scotland star’s goals to a top five.
1 – Opening goal. United 2 St Mirren 1. Premiership at Tannadice. September 19, 2020.
It is his last but certainly not the least of Shankland’s goals. In fact, it shoots right to the top of the charts.
🗣️ 'His technique is just incredible and what a finish' 😯⚽️
— BBC Sport Scotland (@BBCSportScot) September 21, 2020
The technique he showed to twist his body and then almost cushion the volley was sublime.
The only down side is there wasn’t an 8,000-strong crowd inside Tannadice to witness it. It goes straight into the number one slot.
2 – Opening goal. Hibs 4 United 2. Scottish Cup replay at Easter Road. January 29, 2020.
Before the one against the Buddies, this was my particular favourite. Shankland had been under some pressure to show he could mix it with top-flight opposition and, with only 10 minutes gone, against Hibs he answered any doubts with this brilliant take of a Pater Pawlett forward ball on his chest before smashing his shot home from 20 yards.
The Hibees would go on and score four goals but none were better than Shankland’s strike.
3 – Second goal. Dundee 0 United 2. Championship at Dens Park. November 8, 2019.
For obvious reasons, this counter will be the pick of many a United fan. It was a cracker.
Shankland was alert to take possession off Dundee’s Andrew Nelson, ran away from every challenge, took his time and then sent Dark Blues keeper Conor Hazard the wrong way with his left-foot shot.
It was that result more than the 6-2 derby win in August that told you who would end up as the city’s top team that season.
His boss at the time, Robbie Neilson, said: “You get him in front of goal and nine times out of 10 he scores. That’s what he’s done all season and we’re delighted with him.”
4 – Winner. United 2 Arbroath 1. Championship at Tannadice. September 21, 2019.
Shankland was the saviour of the Tangerines this day. This goal gets the “nod” not just for the brilliance of the header but the timing – two minutes into stoppage-time. The striker had just scored a fine goal with 88 minutes on the clock to make it 1-1 but that wasn’t enough for him – he wanted to win.
When Liam Smith sent over a superb cross from the right Shankland hung in the air to bullet the ball home with his head.
It was a taps-aff celebration for the striker and the importance of that particular goal to United’s promotion campaign can’t be overstated.
Neilson said: “They were very hard to break down and the two centre-halves took care of Shankland for the majority of the game but when you start getting that quality into him, he does what he’s good at.”
5 – Third goal. Partick Thistle 1 United 4. Championship at Firhill. January 11, 2020.
Shankland was already on the scoresheet with the opener and his team were sitting 2-0 up when he worked his magic again. This makes it onto the list for the sheer gallusness of the Glaswegian.
🗣️ "After two games without a goal, the SPFL top scorer rattled in a perfect hat-trick – left foot, right foot, header – as United saw off Partick Thistle 4-1"
— SPFL (@spfl) January 14, 2020
There seemed little danger when he cut in from the left but he tormented and teased the Thistle defence time after time with dummy shots before finally slamming the ball low into the net from just inside the box.
The win sent the Tannadice men 17 points clear at the top of the table.