Goalscorers are a different breed to other footballers. They are the match-winners, the glory boys, the men who can turn one point into three in a split second. They can mean the difference between success and failure.
As a result, the top strikers always command the top wages and at some clubs vast differences exist between the financial rewards of some players compared to others, but not at West Bromwich Albion.
Manager Tony Mowbray is a big believer that every player, regardless of position, plays an equally vital role and like a line of Christmas lights, if one fails to function, the set fails to function, therefore they are all important.
Mowbray has always maintained his wish that the wage structure at Albion be distributed equally to help foster team morale and guard against dressing-room unrest.
However, as his side slip towards the Championship, he admits that may have to be reviewed if and when Albion get another crack at the Premier League.
“It has always been a belief of mine that you should try to keep some sort of parity in the dressing room with salaries and structures,” he said.
“I think the dressing room is almost a living, breathing organism that you need to manage so it goes against the grain for me, when you are trying to build a team ethos, to have certain players on two, three or four times the salary of other players who are just as important cogs.
“I find the concept of paying the centre forward five times more than the right back, left back or centre half not right, because the left back has got to mark Cristiano Ronaldo.
“But there is an understanding that if the centre forward can score 25 goals that might keep the team in the league and, even if he is earning more money, the players might not mind as long as he keeps banging goals in.
“It goes against my own ethos, philosophies and beliefs because I like to keep parity on salaries, and yet it hasn’t worked this year. I can’t sit here and say we have missed the quality of a 25 goal-a-season striker or a centre half who has played 400 games in the Premier League because we wouldn’t be able to afford those players’ salaries.
“That is something we have talked about and if we do find ourselves out of the division and manage to bounce straight back it is something that would need further discussion.
“If we felt changing the policy would benefit the club that is something that might have to happen but we’re not in that scenario at the moment and we can all sit here and say that is the only reason. But I don’t believe it is. I watched my team at the weekend and I am pretty sure some of the players at Manchester City are on bigger salaries than my players are on, but I still saw high-quality footballers in yellow shirts so I know you can get footballers who can play at a certain price. It’s not all about paying £20?million for them. It can be about getting quality.
“This year I believe, within our means and our structure, if we had been able to find the couple of players our team needs we could have been very competitive. It’s not necessarily about how much money you play, it’s about their quality on the pitch. Maybe the finance just opens a bigger catchment area. If you pay more money maybe you’ve got more players to choose from to do a job.”