How the Premier League overshadowed Jimmy Greaves’ phenomenal goalscoring record

jimmy greaves

Nobody came close to Jimmy Greaves’ goalscoring record.

On September 12th, Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah scored the first goal in his side’s 3-0 win over Leeds United and in doing so, became the 30th player to join the Premier League’s so-called ‘100 club.’

The elite group consists of players who have notched at least 100 goals in the competition since its inception in 1992 and like the other 29 members, Salah’s introduction was much-deserved.

Jimmy Greaves passed away on Sunday.

However, the sad news of the passing of Jimmy Greaves on Sunday has shone a light at how pre-1992 football in England is often ignored when speaking about individual and team achievements.

Ask most youngsters today who the greatest goalscorer in English league history is and they’re likely to point to Alan Shearer, due to the constant references to the former Newcastle striker’s Premier League record.

Standing at 260 Premier League goals, the achievement is always referred to when people ponder whether the likes of Harry Kane will one day surpass him, but even Shearer is hard done by when it comes to the obsession with the modern game.

Jimmy Greaves head and shoulders above the rest.

Shearer’s early career straddled the changeover from the old First Division to the Premier League and if you take into account his pre-1992 top flight goals, Shearer is actually on an even more impressive 283.

It’s still dwarfed in comparison to Greaves, who stands at the summit of the list of all-time top flight goalscorers in England, hitting a whopping 357 in 516 matches over the course of his career.

Nobody has come near to the ex-Tottenham and Chelsea man before or since, with Steve Bloomer of Derby County and Middlesbrough fame coming next on 314 goals in England’s top division.

Jimmy Greaves goalscoring record unlikely to be beaten.

Dixie Dean and Gordon Hodgson come next on 310 and 287 goals respectively, before Shearer takes his rightful place in England’s pantheon of goalscoring greats in fifth position. Still not a bad innings from the current Match of the Day pundit.

While Kane (currently on 166) matching Shearer’s Premier League record should be considered a distinct possibility, he has a long way to go to overtake his fellow Spurs man as the actual greatest goalscorer in English top flight history.

In fact, such is Greaves’ incredible feat that it is unlikely that anyone will catch him any time soon and whoever is able to do so, we probably haven’t even heard their name yet.

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