FIFA 21: Best Heading Strikers to Sign

Heading is far from a lost art: not only are these strikers evidence of this, but they are the best at it.


Headed goals are less frequent than their footed counterparts, although some attacking areas of the game still allow the aerial threats to thrive, particularly set pieces.

Having a player who carries this type of threat causes defenders to take note, with the attacking team benefitting from link-up play as well as the final product. Strikers who slot into this category may not be the most glamorous of players, but they get the job done in a way that others simply can’t.



If you’re a team struggling for goals in FIFA 21, substance is always more important than style, so consider signing one of the best heading strikers in Career Mode or pick a team with the best heading striker in a Kick-Off match.

Choosing the best heading strikers of FIFA 21

Players who fall into this category carry a particular set of skills and traits. They all have the Aerial Threat speciality, and they all have a very high heading accuracy rating. To be considered among the best heading strikers, they must also play have striker or centre forward down as their primary position.

As headed goals are the focus, all of the top heading strikers have been sorted by their heading accuracy. However, other important factors such as age and potential are mentioned to assist you in choosing the best option for your Career Mode.

Leonardo Pavoletti (93 Heading Accuracy)

Team: Cagliari
Best Position: ST
Age: 31
Overall/Potential: 74 OVR / 74 POT
Value: £3.2 million
Weak Foot: Three-Star
Best Attributes: 93 Heading Accuracy, 86 Jumping, 80 Positioning


Leonardo Pavoletti moved to his current club, Cagliari, from Napoli in 2017. Since the move, he has 31 goals in 97 games to date. Struggling this season, Pavoletti has only two goals as of his 24th Serie A match of 2020/21.

The 32-year-old stands at 6’2’’ and is known for his heading ability, scoring a high percentage of goals with his head. In the 2018/2019 season, out of the 16 goals that Pavoletti scored in Serie A, over half of were headed goals.

Pavoletti boasts a 93 heading accuracy to go along with 86 jumping. His 80 positioning and high work rate also allow him to get in the right place at the right time. These ratings allow Pavoletti to carry the Power Header trait and the Aerial Threat player speciality. That said, he does carry the Injury Prone trait as well.

Luuk de Jong (93 Heading Accuracy)

Team: Sevilla FC
Best Position: ST
Age: 29
Overall/Potential: 80 OVR / 80 POT
Value: £19 million
Weak Foot: Five-Star
Best Attributes: 93 Heading Accuracy, 88 Jumping, 85 Positioning

Luuk de Jong has played in the Premier League, La Liga, and the Bundesliga, but it’s his record in the Eredivisie that stands out. Through 248 games in the Dutch top flight, De Jong scored 135 goals, and he only turned 30-years-old this season.

The Swiss-born Dutchman’s second stint in the Eredivisie came to an end in the summer of 2019, when he moved to Sevilla from PSV Eindhoven. Since then, he has scored 19 goals in 85 matches for the La Liga side and has been a key part of Sevilla’s recent success – scoring twice in the team’s triumphant Europa League final in last season.

With 93 heading accuracy, 88 jumping, and 84 strength, De Jong has the ability to out-jump and outmuscle many defenders in FIFA 21. After that, he then has the technical ability to head the ball into the back of the net. He also boasts 85 positioning, so you know that he’ll be in the box when needed.

Matheus Bardeira (91 Heading Accuracy)

Team: São Paulo
Best Position: ST
Age: 20
Overall/Potential: 78 OVR / 78 POT
Value: £14.5 million
Weak Foot: Three-Star
Best Attributes: 91 Heading Accuracy, 89 Jumping, 87 Shot Power

Matheus Bardeira is a unique player on this list for the simple fact that he isn’t a real player, only being generated to populate one of FIFA 21’s Brazilian clubs. However, that does not take away from his ability to make a real impact in Career Mode.

Bardeira has 91 heading accuracy and 86 finishing to go along with 87 shot power: at 20-years-old that is nothing short of world-class. Although he technically doesn’t have any room for growth, with a 78 overall and 78 potential rating, the dynamic potential feature in FIFA 21 means that he could grow beyond the first season.

The generated Brazilian is listed at 6’2’’ and is an ideal candidate to be a target man, thanks to his 89 jumping. However, where some target men may not be so adept without the ball, Bardeira also has a high attacking work rate and a high defensive work rate. So, for those not concerned about the real-life connection, Bardeira one of the best young target men to sign in FIFA 21’s Career Mode.

Bas Dost (91 Heading Accuracy)

Team: Club Brugge
Best Position: ST
Age: 31
Overall/Potential: 78 OVR / 78 POT
Value: £10.5 million
Weak Foot: Three-Star
Best Attributes: 91 Heading Accuracy, 90 Penalties, 89 Strength

Bas Dost joined Club Brugge in January 2021 and has hit the ground running, scoring seven goals in his first nine league matches for the Belgian side. At 31-years-old, Dost is a seasoned professional who’s closing in on 250 career goals in all competitions. That said, he’s only scored once in 18 games for the Netherlands.

Dost’s best season came in Liga NOS in the 2016/17 season for Sporting Lisbon, during which he accomplished the rare stat of averaging over one goal per game, with 34 goals in 31 games. Throughout the season, he had nailed three hattricks and a further four-goal game to his name.

Not surprisingly, the 6’5’’ centre forward is a physical presence on FIFA 21 with 89 strength and 81 shot power. His 91 heading accuracy, 85 positioning, and 81 composure mean that he is lethal in the penalty box. Also, just in case he’s called up to the spot, Dost boasts a 90 penalties rating.

Matt Smith (91 Heading Accuracy)

Team: Millwall
Best Position: ST
Age: 31
Overall/Potential: 69 OVR / 69 POT
Value: £1.1 million
Weak Foot: Three-Star
Best Attributes: 93 Strength, 91 Heading Accuracy, 75 Positioning

Matt Smith may be the least-known among the best heading strikers featured here, but at 6’6”, you couldn’t miss him if you tried. Currently playing for Millwall, Smith has played over 250 matches in the Championship without ever playing the Premier League.

With over 90 career goals in over 380 games at the time of writing, Smith’s goalscoring record isn’t exemplary. However, he provides an option and a focal point for his teams to utilise.

Smith has 60 jumping on FIFA 21, but it’s his 93 strength and 91 heading accuracy that put him on this list. With the Power Header trait and both the Aerial Threat and Strength Player speciality, the English frontman has a very specific set of skills that can be deadly in the opposition’s box.

All the best heading strikers in FIFA 21

Below, you will find a table with all of the best heading strikers to sign in FIFA 21 Career Mode. They have been sorted by their heading accuracy ability, but also have their potential listed so that you can work out who’d fit your team the best.

NameTeamPositionHeading AccuracyPotentialOverall
Leonardo PavolettiCagliariST937474
Luuk de JongSevilla FCST938080
Matheus BardeiraSão PauloST917878
Bas DostClub Brugge KVST917878
Matt SmithMillwallST916969
Andy CarrollNewcastle UnitedST907373
Raúl GarcíaAthletic BilbaoST, CAM908080
Cristiano RonaldoJuventusST, LW909292
Olivier GiroudChelseaST907979
Fernando LlorenteUdineseST907474
Robert LewandowskiBayern MunichST909292
Wout WeghorstVfL WolfsburgST908282
Shin Wook KimShanghai Greenland ShenhuaST877676
Graziano PellèParmaST867474
Stefan MaierhoferWürzburger KickersST846464
Zlatan IbrahimovicMilanST838484
Ludovic AjorqueRC Strasbourg AlsaceST837877
Fabian KlosDSC Arminia BielefeldST837575
Simon MakienokFC St PauliST826666
Vincent VermeijMSV DuisburgST826866
SimyCrotoneST817171
Tammy AbrahamChelseaST818578

With all of the information about the best heading strikers above, which player will climb above the rest and sign for your club?


Tim M

Tim is an avid football and basketball fan supporting West Ham and Toronto Raptors respectively. He also enjoys playing their digital counterparts FIFA and NBA 2K. When he’s not watching or playing, you’d find him relaxing in front of the tv with his fiancee and a glass of wine.
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