The Premier League has witnessed some great goals in its glorious history. It shouldn’t be a surprise, given the quality of players in the English top flight.
Football has evolved over the years, and players have been using ingenious methods to score goals. Newer set-piece training routines are more focused on creating goals via smarter ways that do not necessarily use the traditional heading techniques.
Premier League players have unique characteristic traits
A footballer develops his signature method of scoring, depending on his physical stature and style of play. Each player brings his unique touch to the pitch, which leads to an array of spectacular goals.
While we are not taking anything away from the beauty of headed goals, our primary aim here is to look at how long a player has gone on a run of goals without using his head.
Take a look at the five players who have the longest streak of Premier League goals scored without a single header.
#5 Patrik Berger - 38
Patrik Berger started his football career in 1991 with Slavia Prague, then moved to Germany and spent a year at Borussia Dortmund. He was then signed by Liverpool in 1996 and spent seven years in the Premier League.
He has scored 38 goals and provided 34 assists in the Premier League. Berger scored all of these goals without heading the ball. The former Czech Republic international has tasted quite a lot of success in his career that has spanned 19 years.
Berger was part of Liverpool’s squad that won the Europa League in 2001. He has also won the FA Cup, two League Cups, and the UEFA Super Cup with the Reds. Although he spent just one year in Germany, he won the Bundesliga title and the German Super Cup with Dortmund.
#4 Mark Noble - 47
West Ham United’s Mark Noble is the epitome of a one-club man. The 34-year-old, who has been West Ham’s mainstay for nearly 20 years, is in the final year of his contract. Noble has made an incredible 539 appearances for the Hammers.
The midfielder had 47 Premier League goals to his name in succession without a header. Noble has not been a feature of David Moyes’ squad this season. He has played in just four matches so far. However, Moyes insists that their club captain will have a crucial role to play for the remainder of their campaign.
Noble revealed that this would be his final season as a West Ham player and he wishes to end his time with them with an FA Cup victory. The Hammers recently entered the fourth round following a win against Leeds. West Ham continue their impressive campaign on both the European and domestic fronts. If they manage to win the FA Cup, it would be a perfect farewell for Noble.
#3 Kevin De Bruyne - 47
Manchester City's midfield magician, De Bruyne has been one of the most impressive players in the Premier League over the past few seasons. The Belgian has a knack for finding teammates with sublime passes and is a striker’s dream. De Bruyne has scored 47 Premier League goals without a header.
However, the Belgian has scored five goals and provided just one assist in the league this season, which is uncharacteristic of him. De Bruyne can be forgiven for his shortcomings as his season was disrupted by a coronavirus infection and other injuries as well.
Pep Guardiola has heaped praise on De Bruyne and said his resurgence will be vital for City for the remainder of the season. Manchester City, who are currently 10 points clear at the top of the table, appear to be headed towards another league title.
#2 Ashley Young - 48
Aston Villa’s Ashley Young is still going strong in a career that has spanned nearly two decades. Young has scored 48 goals without a header in the Premier League. He also has more league assists than any other Aston Villa player in the competition's history. He has set up 47 goals for the Villans.
Young has won the Premier League, Europa League, FA Cup, and the League Cup with Manchester United. He then moved to Italy where he won Serie A with Inter Milan.
Ashley Young made his Aston Villa comeback this season. The 36-year-old’s versatility has been a feature that managers have particularly appreciated.
#1 Damien Duff - 54
Damien Duff has had quite an eventful career and has played in four different domestic leagues. He began his career with the Blackburn Rovers U-18 team and was soon promoted to the senior squad before signing for Chelsea in 2003. Duff has also played for Newcastle and Fulham.
Duff has scored 54 goals and provided 48 assists in 392 appearances in the Premier League. The 5’8" Irishman has a streak of 54 goals in the Premier League without a header. Duff later moved to Australia to play for Melbourne City. His final footballing stint was with Shamrock Rovers, following which he retired in 2015.
Duff has won quite a few trophies in his 19-year long playing career, including two Premier League titles and a League Cup with Chelsea. He also won the League Cup with Blackburn Rovers and was part of the famous Fulham side which reached the 2010 UEFA Europa League final. Duff was named the head coach of the Irish League’s Shelbourne FC in late 2021.