The Premier League is the highest division of the English soccer league structure, sometimes referred to outside England as the English Premier League or the EPL. It's contested by 20 teams, and each one of them plays a total of 38 matches between home and away.
On 20 February 1992, after a vote by clubs in the Football League First Division, the competition was re-branded as the FA Premier League. Since then, 49 different clubs have competed in the league, and only seven have lifted the title at the end of the season. These clubs were usually led by a star player, who is known for bagging many goals.
These players have been excellent and deserve to be praised with the incredible goalscoring ability that most players on the list are strikers, but there is one outstanding goalscoring midfielder who went down as the lone non-striker in the Premier League's all-time top goalscorers.
20. Ian Wright – 133 goals
Ian Wright counted up to 133 goals while playing in the Premier League. He was introduced to the soccer world by Crystal Palace in 1985. He spent six years there, before moving to their city-rivals Arsenal in 1991.
Wright made a name for himself while playing for the Gunners. He scored 104 Premier League goals and an additional 24 in the First Division for Arsenal in his 7-year spell. He scored the remaining goals while wearing the Crystal Palace jersey, and the West Ham one.
19. Romelu Lukaku – 133 goals
Lukaku has played in the Premier League for eight years, from 2011 to 2019. He left Anderlecht to join Chelsea in 2011. Unfortunately, he failed to score any goal for the Blues in the Premier League.
The Belgian has scored 113 total goals, divided between three clubs. He scored 17 for West Bromwich Albion, 28 for Manchester United, and 68 for Everton.
19. Jamie Vardy – 114 goals
From zero to hero, the late bloomer Vardy blossomed in the late years of his career. Earlier he played for lower league sides in England, before joining Leicester in 2012.
He has gone on to become one of the most prolific strikers in the history of the Premier League. Out of the 143 total goals that he has scored for the Foxes, 114 were in the frame of the EPL.
18. Steven Gerrard – 120 goals
Gerrard came through the Liverpool academy, to become one of the greatest Liverpool legends ever. He was included in the first team in 1998, and he went on to make 710 appearances for the Reds in all competitions.
In the Premier League, he featured in 504 games, scoring 121 goals in total. The Englishman’s highest-scoring EPL season was 2008-09 when he managed to add 16 goals for Liverpool.
17. Dwight Yorke – 123 goals
Dwight Yorke spent the majority of his career playing for several English clubs in the Premier League. He is a youth product of Aston Villa, and he managed to make his breakthrough in the first team in 1990. In his 8 years spent at Villa, he scored a total of 60 goals in the EPL.
He also added another 47 while playing for Manchester United, and another 12 from his time at Blackburn Rovers. Yorke also scored two goals for Birmingham City, and he netted only once for Sunderland.
16. Nicolas Anelka – 125 goals
Nicolas Anelka is an infamous figure in the Premier League. The ‘Worldwide traveler’, as many like to call him, featured for six different Premier League clubs in his career, where he scored 126 goals overall.
Anelka wrote his name on the scoresheet 38 times for both Chelsea and Manchester City in the EPL. Also, he scored 23 for Arsenal, and two less for Bolton Wanderers. While featuring for Liverpool, he netted four times, in addition to the two goals he scored for West Bromwich Albion.
15. Robbie Keane – 126 goals
Robbie Keane is a very well-known player to all Premier League fans. Just like Anelka, he also played for six different clubs in England, but wherever he played, he left a significant mark.
The Irish ex-striker netted 91 goals for Tottenham in the Premier League, added to his 12 goals for each of Leeds and Coventry City. Keane scored five while playing at the Anfield for Liverpool, as well as two during his time at West Ham, and three for Aston Villa.
14. Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink – 127 goals
Hasselbaink made his name as a highly-rated talent while featuring in the Netherlands, and Portugal during the ‘90s. In 1997, Leeds noticed him and brought him in to feature in the Premier League.
In 69 league games for Leeds, the Suriname-born striker added 34 goals. However, that’s not his personal best record. He scored 70 goals while playing for Chelsea. In addition, there are also 23 strikes he made for Middlesbrough and another two for Charlton Athletic.
13. Robin van Persie – 144 goals
Emerged in 2001, Robin van Persie thrived for Feyenoord for three years. In 2004, Arsenal signed the talented youngster and that’s where it all began. He spent 11 years in England, scoring a total of 144 goals between Arsenal and Manchester United.
Van Persie netted impressive 96 goals for the Gunners from 2004 to 2012. In summer 2012, he opted to switch clubs, but he stayed in the Premier League. In his three years at the Old Trafford, the Dutchman scored 48 goals in the EPL.
12. Teddy Sheringham – 146 goals
Teddy Sheringham is a well-known player in the Premier League and his rise started in the early ‘90s. The English striker started his English adventure at Nottingham Forest, where he netted only once in the three EPL appearances.
Sheringham’s best record came when he played for Tottenham, scoring 98 goals in 236 Premier League games. He added 31 while wearing the Manchester United jersey, eight for West Ham, and nine at Portsmouth.
11. Les Ferdinand – 149 goals
Les Ferdinand began his career in 1986, at a smaller London club called Hayes. It didn’t take long before he was noticed by Queens Park Rangers. They signed him the following year.
Ferdinand went on to score 60 EPL goals for QPR from 1987 to 1995. In addition, he scored 33 goals for Tottenham, 41 for Newcastle, and 12 for Leicester. He also has two Premier League goals from his time at West Ham, and one at Bolton Wanderers.
10. Michael Owen – 150 goals
Michael Owen was a product of the famous Liverpool youth academy. He made his breakthrough to the first team in 1996. Little did he know at the time that he would end up scoring 150 goals in the Premier League by 2013. Owen managed 118 goals in total for Liverpool in the Premier League, before leaving for Real Madrid in La Liga.
His Spanish adventure lasted only one season, and he returned to England in 2005, with Newcastle United. There he scored 26 league goals. He added another five while at Manchester United and another goal at Stoke City.
9. Harry Kane – 153 goals
Harry Kane is the only player outside the Top 10 Premier League top goalscorers of all time who is still active. However, he looks set to break into the Top 10 very soon. He has scored 153 goals so far in the Spurs jersey.
The 27-year-old striker has so far made 223 Premier League appearances for Tottenham and scored 153 goals. He also played in three first-division games for Norwich City but was never lucky enough to score a goal in their kit.
8. Jermain Defoe – 163 goals
Jermain Defoe hasn’t won a Premier League title in his career, be he will go down as one of the most efficient goalscorers in England. It was with West Ham in 1999 when he started his Premier League stunt.
For Wesh Ham, he netted 18 goals in 74 league matches. However, Defoe made his name as a Tottenham player, scoring 91 total EPL goals. In addition, he netted 34 times for Sunderland, 16 for Portsmouth, and 4 for Bournemouth. He is currently playing for Rangers in Scotland.
7. Robbie Fowler – 162 goals
Just like Robbie Keane and Michael Owen, Robbie Fowler is another former Liverpool academy player who included in the Top 10 list of Premier League goalscorers of all-time. Folwer debuted for the Reds in 1993, and he went on to add 128 league goals until 2001.
He can also boast of scoring 20 goals while playing for Manchester City, and another 14 for Leeds. The Englishman also featured for Blackburn Rovers in the Premier League on three occasions, but he failed to mark his name on the scoresheet.
6. Thierry Henry – 175 goals
Before Henry could ever dream of becoming an Arsenal legend, he spent three years featuring for Monaco in his homeland. However, life wasn't always a box full of chocolates for the Frenchman. He had a failed spell at Juventus.
And just when everyone started doubting him, he joined Arsenal in 1999. Henry spent seven years in North London, before leaving in 2007. He did come back at the Emirates in 2012. Overall, he featured in 258 Premier League games for the Gunners, scoring 176 goals in his two spells.
5. Frank Lampard – 177 goals
Frank Lampard came through the youth ranks of West Ham. He debuted for the first team in 1995. In 2001, Chelsea noticed him and added him to their roster. Even though he had been a midfielder, he went on to become the club’s all-time top goalscorer with 211 total goals across all competitions.
177 of those goals he scored in the Premier League; 144 of which for Chelsea in the period from 2011 to 2014. In summer 2014, he made what could be described as one of the most peculiar transfers ever, moving to Manchester City. There, he scored 6 league goals, as well as 24 from his time at West Ham.
4. Sergio Aguero – 180 goals
Sergio Aguero arrived in the Premier League as a 23-year-old who already had a great experience playing in a top European club. The Argentine moved to the Citizens from Atletico Madrid in 2011. Little did everyone know that he would become Manchester City’s leading goalscorer with a total of 255 goals.
The 32-year-old has scored 180 of those goals while playing in the Premier League. He is already into his 10th season in England and it’s highly likely that he will pass Andrew Cole until the end of the campaign.
3. Andrew Cole – 187 goals
Andrew ‘Andy’ Cole began his career at Arsenal, after coming through their academy. However, he failed to make a single Premier League appearance in three years. Cole is most known for his time at Manchester United, where he scored 93 EPL goals.
In addition, he netted 27 goals for Blackburn Rovers, 43 for Newcastle United, and 12 strikes for Fulham. The former striker can also boast of another 9 goals for Manchester City, and 3 from his time at Portsmouth. He also featured for Sunderland but failed to register a league goal.
2. Wayne Rooney – 208 goals
Rooney is a product of the Everton youth academy, where he debuted at the age of just 17. Two years later, he left to join Manchester United. He stayed at the Old Trafford for 13 years, managing 393 overall appearances In the Premier League, and scoring 183 goals for the Red Devils.
In 2017, he returned to his boyhood club, Everton. Out of the 208 total Premier League goals, he scored 25 for the Merseyside club. His dream return lasted for a season, though. The 35-year-old forward is currently playing for Derby County in the Championship.
1. Alan Shearer – 260 goals
With 260 total goals divided by just two clubs in the span of 14 years, Alan Shearer is the Premier League’s leading goalscorer of all-time. Interestingly, Shearer went through the youth ranks of Southampton, and he entered into the first team in 1988. However, Southampton weren’t playing in the first division at the time.
In 1992, he joined Blackburn Rovers, where he netted incredible 112 goals in 138 league games. Four seasons later, Shearer was sold to Newcastle United. At Newcastle, he made history grabbing various individual accolades thanks to his unbreakable record of 148 Premier League goals by 2006.