The 10 players to score 50 Premier League goals for the Reds
Anthony Martial joined an exclusive club of legendary Manchester United names after netting our second goal in the 2-2 draw with Southampton on Monday night.
The Frenchman’s strike, midway through the first-half, was his 50th Premier League goal for the Reds – a mark previously reached by only nine other players, which is actually more than any other club has managed.
Anthony, who has played 142 matches in the top-flight, has now achieved a feat that eluded the likes of Robin van Persie, Dwight Yorke and Dimitar Berbatov (all scored 48 league goals for the Reds), but who are the other men to hit 50 since the division was rebranded in 1992?
Scroll down to find out...
9. DAVID BECKHAM (62 goals in 265 appearances)
Martial is still a little way off the next man in our list of highest Premier League goalscorers, David Beckham. The homegrown midfielder struck his first top-flight goal on the opening day of the 1995/96 season and went on to score a further 61 over the next seven campaigns, including a record 18 free-kicks.
8. ERIC CANTONA – 64 in 143
‘Le Roi’ is the only Frenchman other than Martial to reach a half-century for the Reds in the league. After scoring six in 13 for Leeds United, at the beginning of the inaugural campaign, he moved to Old Trafford and added a further nine to help us to a first title in 26 years. He reached double figures in each of the following four seasons – including his suspension-shortened 1994/95 – before retiring in 1997.
7. CRISTIANO RONALDO – 84 in 196
Viva Ronaldo! The Portuguese winger dazzled United fans with his tricks from day one in Manchester, but truly exploded during the 2006/07 season, when he netted 17 goals – just one fewer than he’d managed in his first three campaigns combined. Cristiano went one better (well, 14 actually – he scored 31!) the following year as we retained the title and he ultimately ended up with 84 league goals in a red shirt.
6. OLE GUNNAR SOLSKJAER – 91 in 235
Like Martial, the boss scored shortly after being introduced as a substitute on his Premier League debut, in 1996 – and the Norwegian went on to finish as United’s leading marksman that term, with 18 goals. He hit double figures four times in the following five seasons, before a combination of injury problems and being moved to the right wing slowed his scoring somewhat. Still, 91 top-flight goals is more than all but one overseas Reds forward!
5. ANDY COLE – 93 in 195
Coley was already a Premier League Golden Boot-winner with Newcastle United when he transferred to the Reds in 1995, and he picked up where he left off, memorably netting five in one game against Ipswich Town shortly after joining. Andy brought up his 50 during the Treble-winning campaign and continued to score at a prolific rate until he was sold to Blackburn Rovers midway through 2001/02.
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4. RUUD VAN NISTELROOY – 95 in 150
United’s leading Premier League hitman in terms of goals per game, Ruud netted two on his top-flight debut against Fulham and barely stopped after that, reaching goal no.50 in just his 68th match in the division – fittingly, it was also the strike which set a then-record of scoring in 10 consecutive Premier League matches. Ruud’s best campaign came in 2002/03, when his 25 goals were a major reason behind Sir Alex Ferguson’s side reclaiming the Premier League trophy.
3. PAUL SCHOLES – 107 in 499
Scholesy is the first of three United men to register over a hundred goals in the top-flight since 1992. The bulk of the Salford-born star's strikes came in the first half of his career, with effort no.50 registered against Newcastle in February 2002. A career-best 2002/03 campaign followed – 14 goals in 33 games – but the scoring eased up as Paul played more of a holding role in his later career, although there was still time to edge into three figures, with the century arriving during a 1-0 win over Wolves at Molineux in March 2010.
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2. RYAN GIGGS – 109 in 632
Giggs squeaks in at no.2, just ahead of his long-time team-mate. The mercurial Welsh winger only actually hit double figures twice in a Premier League season – 13 in 1993/94 and 11 in 1995/96 – but scored in a record 21 different campaigns. Giggsy hit goal no.50 in 1999, during a 3-1 defeat to Spurs, but his 100th Premier League goal came 10 years later in happier circumstances: a 4-1 rout of Portsmouth at Fratton Park.
1. WAYNE ROONEY – 183 in 393
Unsurprisingly, our all-time record goalscorer is way out on top in our list of leading Premier League goalscorers. Wayne Rooney plundered 183 top-flight goals in all for the Reds, netting his first in the memorable game which ended Arsenal’s long unbeaten record, in 2004. Wazza’s 50th top-flight effort for the club came in a 4-0 thrashing of Aston Villa in 2008, and he took under two years to hit 100 – fittingly, that goal came against the Gunners. Incredibly, Rooney made it into double figures for league goals in each of his first 11 seasons with the Reds, with his 27 in 34 games in 2011/12 standing as his personal best.
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