The Tuesday 10: Premier League centurions
With Wayne Rooney having notched his 100th top-flight goal, Dan Ross celebrates some of the Premier League's centurions. Click the pics to watch the videos!
Wayne Rooney - 100 Premier League goals (so far)
With a sublime touch and an unerring eye for goal, Rooney was always going to get a century of strikes; the only question was how quickly.
Two wonderful goals against Arsenal sandwich a 98-goal collection featuring an astonishing array of finishes, from unreal volleys (against Newcastle), to mazy dribbles (Leeds) and inch perfect chips (Portsmouth).
Expect more of the same as he chases the totals set by these characters...
Alan Shearer - 260 goals
Streets ahead as the Premier League's record goalscorer, almost 50 percent clear of his nearest rival.
Pace and finesse weren't Shearer's strong points, but power and accuracy more than made up for it.
Firing Blackburn to the 1995 Premier League and Newcastle to numerous near-misses, Shearer plundered his first ton within 124 Premier League matches, making him the LeagueÃ¢ÂÂs quickest centurion.
If Rooney continues to score at the same rate as his first 100, he'll have to play until he's nearly 40 to catch the Geordie.
Andy Cole - 187
'Goal King Cole' exploded onto the Premier League scene in 1993 upon Newcastle's return to the top flight, netting 34 goals in 40 games and being voted PFA Young Player of the Year.
His next season was heading in the same direction when Alex Ferguson shelled out a British-record ÃÂ£7million for him in January 1995.
Although he never again managed to score more than 20 in a season, he still notched 187 Premier League strikes in a trophy-laden career.
Thierry Henry - 174
Arsenal's relationship with their mercurial French legend was a symbiotic one.
Arsene Wenger gave Thierry the platform on which he could make himself one of the gameÃ¢ÂÂs finest forwards, proving his Juventus critics wrong.
Henry returned the favour by transforming Arsenal into the Ã¢ÂÂinvincibleÃ¢ÂÂ side that destroyed FergieÃ¢ÂÂs monopoly.
Defences couldnÃ¢ÂÂt handle his trademark incisive runs and finishing from the left wing, and in eight seasons with the Gunners, Henry hit the back of the net 174 times.
Robbie Fowler - 163
Ã¢ÂÂGodÃ¢ÂÂ to the Kop, and blessed with a brilliant football brain and a wonderful touch, Fowler was a handful to mark despite his lack of pace or physical presence.
As a result, he scored goals. Lots of them.
Unfortunately, after a blistering start his career was hampered by injuries and the rise of a young stripling called Michael Owen.
Fowler moved on to Leeds and then Manchester City without recapturing his early form. He's now best remembered for controversies in a career that should have produced so much more.
Frank Lampard - 116*
Since making his West Ham debut back in 1996, Lampard's keen eye for goal combined with remarkable stamina and consistency make him a constant threat around the penalty area.
Since his move to Chelsea in 2001, Lampard has been the driving force in their revolution, setting records for consecutive appearances in the league, and hitting almost 100 league strikes for the Blues alone - he's on 93 and counting.
Ian Wright - 113
The first Arsenal icon to reach a century of Premier League strikes, long before Mr Va Va Voom, Wright had pace, power and remarkable finishing ability.
The number of goals he racked up was far from surprising. That he was only given 17 starts for England is shocking.
WrightyÃ¢ÂÂs 113-goal haul for the Gunners (and Hammers!) is even more impressive when you consider that his career had actually started seven years before the inception of the glamorous new competition.
In total, he scored 387 goals, each greeted with that grin.
Emile Heskey - 106*
ThatÃ¢ÂÂs right, Emile Heskey is a member of the 100 club.
Like the fable of the tortoise and the hare, HeskeyÃ¢ÂÂs slow and steady approach to goal collection has seen him break that elite barrier with 105 strikes in 15 Premier League campaigns Ã¢ÂÂ an average of seven goals a season.
HeskeyÃ¢ÂÂs first two full seasons in the top flight with Martin OÃ¢ÂÂNeillÃ¢ÂÂs Leicester each brought 10 goals.
Since then, he has only managed double figures twice Ã¢ÂÂ at Liverpool and Birmingham Ã¢ÂÂ but OÃ¢ÂÂNeill was happy to re-sign him last January.
Four goals later, he's on course for South Africa and the Champions League.
Matt Le Tissier - 101
A technically gifted attacking midfielder, Le Tiss was that rarity Ã¢ÂÂ such a great scorer of goals and a scorer of great goals that almost all football fans liked him.
The Ronaldinho of his time, he put bums on seats at the Dell with spectacular performances that would leave home fans drooling and the opposition applauding.
Exciting and effective in equal measure, some of Le TissÃ¢ÂÂs 101 goals have gone down as the finest the Premier League has ever seen, with ball-juggling volleys, long-range blasts, delicate lobs and leg-twisting dribbled goals just some of the efforts he showcased on a freakishly regular basis.
Ryan Giggs - 100*
If anyone was to be crowned Mr Premier League, it would be the man who has scored in every one of its 18 seasons Ã¢ÂÂ a remarkable feat, and one that only he has achieved.
Giggs rose to prominence in 1991/92's old First Division, winning the PFA Young Player of the Year award during a season when Gary Lineker still stalked top-flight defences.
Almost two decades on, Giggs has adapted his game from speedy winger to wily campaigner.
And his team still keep winning the league.
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