He’s one of the greatest strikers England has ever produced, a Premier League winner with Blackburn, idolised on Tyneside and his iconic celebration has been replicated worldwide.
Alan Shearer has 409 career goals, 206 coming in the famous black and white stripes of his boyhood club, making him the Magpies record goal scorer. This isn’t his only record of course, his top flight tally of 260 makes him the Premier League’s leading marksman, a total unlikely to be topped for some time.
His story is iconic, leaving home at a young age to chase his dream on the south coast with Southampton, before making history with Blackburn and then completing his journey back to the Toon with a world record transfer at the time.
But what are his top 5 strikes? Read on to find out.
vs Everton – December 2002
The first goal that comes to mind, an absolute thunderbolt out of seemingly nothing.
Let’s set the
scene. It’s a bitterly cold December evening in the North East. Newcastle look
to be heading towards a 1-0 defeat to Everton. Step forward Alan Shearer.
The ball is pumped long by Laurent Robert, headed down by strike partner Shola Ameobi and without a second thought, Shearer unleashes a venomous volley, looping over the helpless Richard Wright in the Toffees goal, passing him before he knew what had happened.
This goal is encapsulated by its accompanying commentary. “What do they say? Cometh the hour, cometh the man!”
By the time the St James’ faithful had got their breath back, Craig Bellamy had them off their feet again. They had turned it around. But it wasn’t the comeback that had Geordies talking, it was that volley.
vs Netherlands – June 1996
It’s Euro ’96 and the nation is gripped. Football was well and truly coming home and the Three Lions were looking to progress to the knock out stages with a win against a talented Dutch side.
Shearer had struggled for goals in the build up to the tournament and his inclusion by Terry Venables had some scratching their heads. However, he repaid the faith bestowed upon him by the manager, and ended the tournament with the Golden Boot.
England trounced the Netherlands 4-1, with Shearer bagging a brace. But it was his second goal that had the fans purring.
Fellow Geordie Paul Gascoigne started the move, marauding in from the left before finding Teddy Sheringham, who put it on a plate for Shearer to rifle home into the top corner.
vs Wimbledon – April 1996
It would be remiss of us not to include a goal from his Blackburn Rovers’ days where he helped lead them to a top flight title in 1995.
This goal is from the following year in an end-of-season clash with Wimbledon, and reaffirms that Shearer just about had it all in his locker.
He had the ability to mix power and accuracy.
The ball is lobbed over the Dons’ midfield before landing at Shearer’s feet on the edge of the box. He takes a superb touch to give himself a yard of space before spinning and curling the ball into the top corner, the keeper didn’t even move. Beautiful.
vs Aston Villa – November 2001
If there is one word to describe this goal, it’s audacious.
Rob Lee spots Shearer making a run in behind the back of the Aston Villa defence, a side that were actually leading the table when these two teams met.
The run is timed superbly from the Newcastle number 9 and he looks set to tee it across to his strike partner for a simple tap in. But remember, this is Shearer and that would be far too easy.
Close to the goal line, he manages to take the weight out of the cross and deftly place it over the head of Peter Schmeichel in to the opposite corner. Exquisite.
Of course, it wasn’t the first time the Great Dane was lobbed at St James’, but maybe we’ll cover that in a future blog…
vs Portsmouth – February 2006
Possibly not the easiest on the eye, but has to be included for what it meant. Not just for Shearer himself, but his family and the whole of Tyneside.
The 35-year-old would hang up his boots come the end of this season and he was still searching for the goal that would take him past Jackie Milburn to the top step of NUFC goalscoring greatness.
It’s a long ball forward from Shay Given, Shearer flicks it down to Ameobi who, with the neatest of backheels, returns it in Big Al’s direction.
He takes a touch to set himself before poking it past the keeper. Record broken.
He reels away in celebration in trademark style, in front of the Gallowgate End where he used to stand as a boy, the roof is lifted off of St James’ Park in equal celebration and relief. He had done it: Shearer had the record as Newcastle’s all-time top scorer! What a moment, what a player.