With the Premier League back in action, the fans are once again ready to witness the footballing magic on the pitch. Arguably the greatest domestic league, over the years it has seen some remarkable and weird records being created and broken.
Today we look at few of the greatest Premier League records.
Oldest Player – John Burridge – Manchester City – 43 years and 162 days
John Burridge had a remarkable career that started in 1969 and almost went on till the new millennium, ending in 1997.
When the veteran goalkeeper did hang up his boots, he had played for 29 clubs and was 46 years old. His final appearance, though, came three years prior to that, in 1995.
Burridge, 43 at the time, was part of the Manchester City squad in a mentor-cum-player role. On May 14, 1995, City finally called upon Burridge after an injury to their regular keeper Tony Coton, which saw Burridge enter the pitch at 43 years of age. Even though Coton had conceded two goals, Burridge managed to keep a clean sheet and help City go past Queens Park Rangers 3-2.
It is unlikely, though, that we will see another 43-year-old in the Premier League with the youth being given the preference in today’s day and age.
Well, that is unless Zlatan decides to return to the Premier League.
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Most yellow cards for a single team in one game – Nine (Tottenham – Tottenham Hotspur vs. Chelsea – 2016
This is one record Spurs probably wouldn’t want. They became the first Premier League side to rack up nine yellow cards in a single game. NINE! Yes, you read it right. And what was even more remarkable was that no one was sent off.
Kyle Walker was the first to be booked inside 27 minutes, and soon his defence partner Jan Vertonghen was booked too in the 38th minute. Fullback Danny Rose added his name on the list when he was booked just on the cusp of half time at 45 minutes.
Argentine Erik Lamela got the bookings underway in the second half when he picked up his booking in the 51st minute. Christian Eriksen joined in too with a reckless lunge at Eden Hazard that saw the referee take the Dane’s name, before Eric Dier got into a scuffle with multiple Chelsea players and picked up a booking as well. The final minutes of the game saw an ugly brawl breakout which saw Harry Kane, Moussa Dembélé and Ryan Mason get booked.
As the players left the pitch, the only two players who weren’t booked for Spurs were Toby Alderweireld and Son Heung-min.
Fewest wins in a single season – One – Derby County – 2007/08
If you Google ‘worst premier league teams ever”, your first hit will be Derby County’s 2007/08 side. That’s how bad it was for the Rams.
After qualifying to the Premier League on a high, Derby had a horror season, one which if looked back upon now still puts a lot of people in disbelief. Their solitary win came against Newcastle United at home, where they won 1-0. Barring that there really was nothing else to show for.
By the end of the season, not only did Derby get relegated, they also went down with some of the worst records one could hope for. They finished the season with one solitary win, which till date is lowest number of wins in a season. Their points tally was 11, which is the lowest in the Premier League era. They also suffered the most number of defeats in a season – 29 – and scored the least amount of goals in a season – 20. They even conceded the most number of goals in a season with 89 and were the earliest to get relegated, by end March.
Cristiano Ronaldo, Fernando Torres and Emmanuel Adebayor all had more individual goals that season than the entire Derby squad.
Most assists – 162 (Ryan Giggs)
Manchester United‘s Welsh magician has many accolades to his name and one of which is a record which probably won’t be touched any time soon.
Giggs’ first assist came way back in September 1992 when he set up Andrei Kanchelskis against Leeds United, and his final assist was for Robin van Persie in May 2014 against Hull City. In between those 22 years, Giggs raked up 162 assists, becoming a critical clog in the well-oiled Man United machine under Sir Alex Ferguson.
From Denis Irwin to Dwight Yorke, to Mark Hughes and even Gary Neville, Giggs’ vision helped everyone find the back of the net. The closest on the list of most assists is Cesc Fàbregas, who is more than 50 assists behind and unlikely to play in the Premier League again. The closest active players are James Milner on 85, who is nearing the end of his career, and Kevin De Bruyne on 78, who probably is the only one who can go near Giggs’ record.
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Most goals in one half – Five (Jermain Defoe)
Tottenham Hotspur’s 9-1 demolition of Wigan Athletic was memorable in many ways. Not only was it their highest topflight win but it also saw their striker Jermain Defoe pump five goals in one half itself.
Peter Crouch had given Spurs an early lead and it stayed that way until half time. Once the players got back on the pitch, the floodgates opened. Defoe scored his first in the 51st minute and had completed his hat-trick by the 58th minute. Although Wigan pulled one back in the 57th minute, that was it for them. Defoe made them pay and scored in the 69th and 87th minute again to end up with five on the night.
Defoe was the third player to achieve the feat of putting five in the net on a single night and even though Dimitar Berbatov and Sergio Agüero have managed to score five in a game since then, no one has managed to score five in a half in the Premier League.
Longest unbeaten run – 49 games (Arsenal) – 2003/04
Played 49, won 36, drawn 13, lost NONE. Yes. This actually happened and isn’t a stat out of Football Manager.
After coming agonisingly close to a title the previous season, the Gunners went on an incredible run in the 2003/04 season that saw them go undefeated in their entire Premier League campaign. Quite aptly, the 2004 Arsenal squad is referred to as “The Invincibles”.
The Gunners started the season strongly with four wins on the trot but were almost defeated in the eighth game of the season at Old Trafford, when Ruud van Nisterlrooy got a late penalty, with the score at 0-0. Luckily for Arsenal, his shot went off the crossbar and that was probably the closest game for the Gunners. The North London side went on to dominate the entire season as they put in memorable performances week in, week out. From Robert Pires’ winner at Liverpool to basically every Thierry Henry goal, it was just a joy to watch Arsène Wenger’s men that season.
When Arsenal ended the season unbeaten, they matched Preston North End’s record of going unbeaten in the entire season, which was set way back in 1889, although Preston had done it in a 22-game season. Arsenal’s 49-game unbeaten record also saw them go past Nottingham Forest’s 26-year-old record of 42 games unbeaten. Their run did finally come to an end with a 0-2 loss to Manchester United in October 2004, but that takes nothing away from The Invincibles and their place in footballing history.
Most goals in the Premier League – 260 (Alan Shearer)
Out of all the aforementioned records, if any of them will remain untouched, it probably will have to be this one. This one is an ode to Shearer’s individual brilliance.
Between 1992 and 2006, Alan Shearer found the net 260 times in 441 games, which is almost once every two games. Given the longevity of his career, that makes it even more remarkable.
Known as the most complete striker, Shearer was as lethal from the air as he was from inside the box or from long range. The Englishman was at his peak during the 1994/95 and 1995/96 seasons when he went on to win back-to-back Golden Boots and even won the Premier League title with Blackburn Rovers in 1994/95.
The closest person to Shearer’s record was Wayne Rooney, when he finished his career on 208 Premier League goals. Sergio Agüero could have had a chance, but with injuries plaguing him towards the end of his Premier League career, the Argentine left the Premier League with 184 goals, almost 80 behind Shearer.
The only person who technically might come close to Shearer is Harry Kane, who is on 166 goals, almost a full hundred behind Shearer, but given the workload of the players and the number of games players go through in a season, Kane would need to have five to six out-of-the-world seasons to catch Shearer.