Top 10 all-time Premier League goalscorers

Ajax v Manchester United - UEFA Europa League Final
Wayne Rooney
Ben Winfield

As Wayne Rooney leaves Everton to join DC United, one of the greatest goal scorers in the history of the Premier League leaves the country. Rooney heads off to the States after just one season back at Everton, ending a 16-year long Premier League career.

Rooney is one of 28 players to have scored more than 100 Premier League goals. Of those players, just four are still playing for a Premier League club: Jermain Defoe, Sergio Aguero, Harry Kane, and Romelu Lukaku.

Not many players burst onto the scene in the same way Rooney did when he came off the bench to score the winner against Arsenal at the age of 16, but he is not the only great goal scorer the Premier League has seen.

In recent times it has been the likes of Kane and Mo Salah, but the Premier League era has been dominated by players such as Thierry Henry and Frank Lampard, whose goalscoring exploits have brought their club success.

Every one of the top five in this list has won at least one Premier League title, and that's one of the things that sets them apart from other goal scorers, and something the likes of Kane and Lukaku will have to achieve if they are no be remembered amongst the greats.

So, with Rooney leaving Everton, here are the 10 players who have scored the most Premier League goals:

#10 Teddy Sheringham (146 goals)

Teddy Sheringham
Teddy Sheringham

Sheringham is perhaps best known for his performances as a substitute in the 1999 Champions League Final, coming off the bench to score the equaliser, and then set up Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to win Manchester United the title. However, in England, Sheringham played for six Premier League clubs, accumulating 146 goals during his league career.

The former England striker made his name at Tottenham, scoring 75 goals for the North London club, before moving to Old Trafford. He was often used as a substitute in Manchester, and passed 100 Premier League goals while there, before returning to Tottenham. He ended his career in England’s top flight with a spell at West Ham United, during which he became the oldest goalscorer in Premier League history, scoring against Portsmouth at the age of 40 years and 266 days.

#9 Les Ferdinand (149 goals)

Ferdinand celebrates scoring 2nd goal
Les Ferdinand

Ferdinand did much of his best work in the early years of the Premier League and had 100 Premier League goals by the end of the 1996/97 season. His first three seasons in the division were spent at QPR, where he scored an impressive 60 goals, before a £6 million move to Newcastle United. There he added 41 goals in two years, including his hundredth towards the end of his final season with the club.

This was followed by a move to Tottenham, where despite spending five and a half seasons, he never hit top form. He scored just 33 league goals in his time there but netted the 10,000th Premier League goal against Fulham in 2001. He spent short spells at five clubs, including West Ham and Leicester City, before retiring from football in 2006.

#8 Michael Owen (150 goals)

Michael Owen
Michael Owen

Owen is the only Englishman to win the Ballon D’or in the Premier League era, and just one of two England-based players to win it in that period. Owen made his name at Liverpool after making his debut at the edge of 17. He played 216 league games for the Merseyside club, scoring 118 goals, earning him a move to Real Madrid.

He returned to the Premier League after just a single year in Spain, signing for Newcastle United for a fee of £17 million. Owen consistently suffered from injuries during his four years with the Magpies, restricting him to just 71 appearances. He made the surprise move to Manchester United in 2009 and scored only five goals in his three seasons there, including famously getting the winner against Manchester City in their 4-3 victory in 2009.

Owen finished his career with a single season with Stoke, where he was once again restricted by injuries. He is remembered though as one of the best strikers we have seen in England, and certainly one of the best natural finishers to have played in the Premier League.

#7 Jermain Defoe- 162 goals

Crystal Palace v Sunderland - Premier League
Jermain Defoe

Now Rooney has left the Premier League to head to the USA, Defoe is the only man in this top 10 still playing in England. Defoe started his career with West Ham, where he played for two seasons in the Premier League before the Hammers were relegated to the Championship. After a season in the second division, he moved to Tottenham, where he scored 43 goals in five seasons.

After a season and a half with Portsmouth, Defoe returned to Tottenham, where during his five seasons he passed the 100-goal mark in the Premier League. He left Tottenham to join Toronto FC in Canada, but following a brief spell there, he returned to England with Sunderland as part of a swap deal with Jozy Altidore.

He was a key player for Sunderland in his two and a half years there, scoring 34 goals before the club’s relegation in 2017. He has since returned to Bournemouth, where he had a short but successful loan spell early on in his career, and scored four goals in his first season back. He has two years left on his contract with the south-coast club, so will hope to score a lot more Premier League goals.

#6 Robbie Fowler- 163 goals

Robbie Fowler
Robbie Fowler

Fowler’s name is one that will be forever associated with Liverpool. He started his career at Anfield, and in eight years with the club, he scored 120 goals in just 236 games. He was a favourite with the fans, who nicknamed him “God”, after his impressive performances. However, he fell out with manager Gerard Houllier in 2001 and was forced out of the club, leaving for Leeds United in a £12 million deal.

He suffered from a recurring hip problem in his time at Elland Road but kept up his impressive goal record, scoring 15 goals in 31 games. Leeds were hit with financial problems towards the end of the 2002/03 season, and they were forced to sell him to Manchester City. Injuries continued to trouble Fowler, and it began to affect his form at City. In January 2006, Rafa Benitez brought him back to Liverpool, where he stayed for a year, during which he made his final Premier League appearances.

#5 Thierry Henry- 175 goals

Arsenal v Blackburn Rovers
Thierry Henry

Henry is the only foreign player on this list, and also the only one to have scored all his goals for a single club. Many see Henry as the best player in Premier League, and it is easy to see why. He was signed by Arsene Wenger from Juventus as a winger in 1999, but he immediately moulded him into a striker to replace Nicolas Anelka.

The Frenchman was a sensation in England, and when he left for Barcelona in 2007, he had scored 175 Premier League goals in just 254 matches. He is the only player to score 20 goals in five consecutive Premier League seasons, including getting 30 goals in the Invincible season in 2003/04. He fittingly scored a hat-trick against Wigan in the final match at Highbury, and earlier on in that season became Arsenal’s all-time top scorer.

#4 Frank Lampard- 177 goals

Stoke City v Chelsea - Premier League
Frank Lam

Lampard is the highest scoring midfielder in Premier League, having netted 57 more than the next highest, Steven Gerrard. Even though he is best known for his success at Chelsea, Lampard began his career at West Ham under the management of his uncle Harry Redknapp. He scored 24 times for the Hammers, before making the move across London to join Chelsea for £11 million.

Lampard established himself as a goalscoring midfielder at Stamford Bridge, and between the 2003/04 and 2012/13 seasons, scored league 10 goals in every campaign. He won three Premier League titles with the Blues and became the club’s all-time top scorer in 2013 with a double against Aston Villa. His final Premier League action came in a strange loan spell at Manchester City, during we which he scored the equaliser against Chelsea at the Etihad.

#3 Andy Cole- 187 goals

Andy Cole
Andy Cole

Cole made his Premier League debut for Newcastle in 1993, and it led to a record-breaking season. He scored 34 goals that year, and that remains a joint-record for most goals in a single Premier League season, though these came during a 42-game season. He scored 43 goals in 58 league goals for the Magpies before moving to Manchester United.

He spent eight years at United, during which he scored 93 goals, without ever really holding down a starting spot at Old Trafford. He left in 2002 to join Blackburn Rovers, where he stayed for three seasons, scoring 27 goals. Before he retired, he had short spells in the Premier League at Fulham, Manchester City and Portsmouth, but it’s his time at Newcastle and Manchester United that he is most fondly remembered for.

#2 Wayne Rooney- 208 goals

Manchester United v Stoke City - Premier League
Wayne Rooney

As mentioned earlier in the article, Rooney is one of the greatest goal scorers we have seen in this country. The former England captain broke Frank Lampard’s record of scoring 10 goals in the most consecutive seasons when he went to double figures for the 11th straight seasons in 2015.

Rooney is also the only player to have scored 100 goals at one Premier League ground, Old Trafford. He became Manchester United’s all-time goal scorer in 2017, when his brilliant free kick against Stoke took him past Sir Bobby Charlton to 249, reaching the landmark 215 matches faster than Charlton.

#1 Alan Shearer- 260 goals

Newcastle United v Sunderland Premier League 1997
Alan Shearer

Shearer leads this list by quite some way, after a brilliant career in England. He began his Premier League career with Blackburn Rovers, and in his four seasons there, he scored 112 goals in just 138 games. In that time, he equalled Andy Cole’s record of 34 goals in a single season, in the year Blackburn won their only Premier League title.

A year later he made the move to his boyhood club Newcastle United, for a then-world record £15 million. He would score another 148 goals for Magpies, and in the process become their all-time top scorer. He was the first man to reach 100 Premier League goals, achieving the record in 1995, and he has continued to lead the division’s scoring charts ever since.

Edited by Zeeshan Ali


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