Who are the highest scoring defenders in Premier League history or in other words defenders with most goals in Premier League ever? By nature, scoring for a defender is not a duty. A defender must defend, however, that hasn’t kept defenders from scoring.
And a defender who scores in one of the most or maybe the most major European league - we mean Premier League - must have some goal scoring talent, for sure, let alone those who are among the all-time Premier League's goal scoring defenders.
From among the highest scoring defenders in EPL of all time 5 are retired and 5 are still in the business - a perfect balance! - with the 10th position shared by 3 retired footballers two of whom are English and the other one from Ecuador.
Most goals scored by a defender in Premier League history? You want to know which defender has scored the most number of goals in Premier League history and how many goals he has scored? Read the rest of this post to know.
Please also consider that the number of goals counted here are actually the goals a player has scored in the Premier League. That means a player may have scored for a team a number of goals but only those goals are counted that have been scored when the aforementioned team competed in the Premier League.
The first and only player among the first 10 top scoring defenders in Premier League history who is not currently serving a Premier League club, Ashley Simon Young, simply known as Ashley Young, is a 35-year-old English footballer who has played both as a winger and full-back.
He’s a product of the Premier League club, Watford, and has also played for them for four seasons between 2003 and 2007 in one of which - actually 2006-07 season - they competed in the Premier League.
Other than Watford Young has served two other Premier League clubs, namely Aston Villa and Manchester United, for whom he has scored 45 goals in total, indeed, at league level - 30 goals for Aston Villa and 15 goals for Manchester United.
So, it’s Aston Villa that gets the highest share of Young’s goals. That number of goals (30) have been scored in the 157 appearances that Young has made for Aston Villa which means the 35-year-old defender has scored almost one goal in every 5 appearances that he has made for the Lions. Maybe Young owes that number of goals to the fact that he has also played as a winger? Maybe.
Ashley Young is currently serving the Serie A club, Inter Milan, and has scored 4 goals in the 22 appearances that he has made for them so far. He’s also been a member of England national team since 2007 and has also scored 7 goals in the 39 appearances that he has made for them since.
Although Young has scored for Aston Villa more than any other club during his career, it is with Manchester United that he has won the most number of titles among which are one Premier League title in 2012-13 season, one FA Cup in 2015-16 season, and one EFL Cup in 2016-17 season.
The second English footballer on the list of top scoring defenders in Premier League history, John Terry is a 39-year-old retired defender who scored 41 goals during his career for Premier League clubs. But unlike Ashley Young who scored most of his Premier League goals for Aston Villa, John Terry only scored one goal for them in the 32 appearances that he made for them in the final season of his career, namely 2017-18 season.
And the rest of his goals? Terry scored the rest of his goals (40) for only one Premier League club: Chelsea, and between 1998 and 2017 that he served them. Chelsea is actually the club Terry served the most during his career; actually for 19 years between 1998 and 2017 as mentioned above and during this time he made 492 appearances for them only at league level. So with that number of goals (40) that are also scored at league level, we can say Terry has scored almost one goal in every 12 appearances that he has made for the Blues.
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And it is with Chelsea that Terry has won all his club titles and trophies among which are 5 Premier League titles, 5 FA Cups, and 3 Football League Cups. Terry was also named UEFA Club Defender of the Year in 2005, 2008, and 2009 and Chelsea Player of the Year in 2000-01 and 2005-06 seasons. He also played for the English national team between 2003 and 2012 and during this time scored 6 goals in the 78 appearances that he made for them.
The first retired footballer on the list of top scoring defenders in Premier League history, David Unsworth is a 47-year-old former English footballer who served only English clubs - both Premier League and non-Premier-League ones - during his career.
He actually served 10 clubs with some of their Premier League ones being Aston Villa, West Ham United and Everton. The club that Unsworth has served the most and also has scored the most number of league goals for is Everton.
Unsworth actually served Everton in two time periods, namely from 1992 to 1997 and from 1998 to 2004 which sum up to 11 years, and during this time scored 34 goals for them. That means he has scored 89% of all his Premier League goals for Everton, and that’s no wonder since he’s also a product of Everton.
Unsworth kept his loyalty toward his origin club, Everton, even after retirement by working for their under-aged team, namely their U23 team, in 2013-14 season as an assistant and their senior team in 2016-17 season as a caretaker.
And it was with Everton that Unsworth won his two trophies, namely FA Cup and FA Charity Shield both in 1995. The only other club achievement Unsworth gained during his career was when his club, Sheffield United, finished second on the Championship table in 2005-06 season and promoted to the Premier League for the next season to come. The retired English footballer also appeared once for the English national team in 1995 but never scored a goal for them.
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And here comes another retired English footballer on the list of top scoring defenders in Premier League history: Ian Marshall. He is actually a 56-year-old retired footballer who served 6 English clubs during his career with some of the being Premier League ones such as Everton, Leicester City, and Ipswich Town - in fact for the whole or partly the time period he served them.
The club Marshall served the most during his career is Oldham Athletic for whom he made 170 appearances and scored 36 goals, however, he almost scored the same number of goals (actually 32) for the Premier League club, Ipswich town, but you should also consider that from all the 4 seasons he served Ipswich Town, three happened in the Premier League, so that number - we mean 32 - must be lower.
The second club Marshall scored the most number of goals for was Leicester City for whom he netted 18 goals in the 83 appearances that he made for them between 1996 and 2000. And this time, unlike Ipswich Town experience, all the seasons were the Premier League ones.
So that number is that, 18 and nothing less. All in all, Marshall scored 94 goals in the 411 league appearances that he made for the English clubs he served during his career which means he almost scored one goal in every 4 appearances he made during his career.
Marshall never served the English national team during his career and never worked as a manager after his retirement, however, he is the only footballer among the top 10 defenders with most goals in Premier League ever who has played as a striker too. Maybe that justifies that fact that he has scored almost in every 4 appearances that he has made during his career?
Halfway through the list of top scoring defenders in Premier League history, we come to Leighton Baines who sits on the 5th position with only one goal behind Ian Marshall. Baines only served two English clubs during his career: Everton and Wigan Athletic with the former a Premier League club all through the Baines’ career and the latter having competed for two seasons in the Premier League, namely 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons, during the time the 35-year-old recently retired English footballer served them; actually from 2002 to 2007.
If you ask us, Leighton Baines is more an Everton player than a Wigan Athletic one. Why? Because he has served Everton for 13 years between 2007 and 2020 which is two times longer than Wigan Athletic and has scored at least 7 times higher for them: 29 vs 4, and consider that some of these 4 goals for Wigan Atheltic might have been scored when the club didn’t actually compete in the Premier League.
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The interesting fact about Leighton Baines is that he’s the only footballer among the highest scoring defenders in Premier League history - at least among the top 10 - who has served only two clubs - the above-mentioned clubs - both in his youth and senior career. He also served the English national team between 2010 and 2015 and scored one goal in the 30 appearances that he made for them.
The first non-English footballer on the list of top scoring defenders in Premier League history, Ian Harte is a 43-year-old retired Irish footballer who has scored 28 Premier League goals during his career.
For the most part, Harte served English clubs both in the Premier League and not during his career, however, he also served the Spanish club, Levante, during this time - actually between 2004 and 2007, and even scored 10 goals in the 66 appearances that he made for them.
So if we just subtract these 10 goals from all the goals Harte has scored during his career, we can say that he has scored 63 goals for English clubs during his career from among which, as it’s clear, 28 have been scored for Premier League clubs.
We’d better say “Premier League club” because all the 28 goals Harte has scored at Premier League level have been scored for only one club: Leeds United, although the other English clubs he served during his career competed in one season or two in the Premier League at the same time.
And all the 28 goals Harte has scored for Leeds United scored in the 213 appearances that he made for them. That means he scored almost one goal in every 8 appearances that he made for the Whites. Almost a good record for a defender, and maybe that’s because he also played as a midfielder and Leeds was the club he served at the start of his career.
Harte also served the Irish national team between 1996 and 2007 and during this time scored 12 goals in the 64 appearances that he made for them which translates to almost one goal in every 5 appearances; a better record than his club one.
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Occupying the 7th position on the list of top scoring defenders in Premier League history, Gary Cahill is a 34-year-old English footballer who is currently serving the Premier League club, Crystal Palace, and has scored a total of 27 Premier League goals to this date.
Gary Cahill has only played for English clubs including Premier League ones during his career, and has scored 30 goals for them 27 of which, as you know, have been scored at Premier League level, and for three clubs, namely, Aston Villa, Chelsea, and Bolton Wanderers.
However, the share of Cahill Premier League goals is not evenly distributed among the three clubs mentioned above with Aston Villa only having a 1-goal share and Chelsea and Bolton Wanderers each a 13-goal one.
Despite the fact that Cahill has scored 13 goals for both Chelsea and Bolton Wanderers, indeed, at league level, it is Chelsea that Cahill has served the most during his career - actually for seven years between 2012 and 2019 - and also it is with Chelsea that the English center back has collected most of his club titles and trophies among which are two Premier League titles, two FA Cups, and one UEFA Champions League title.
And with Bolton Wonderers? Cahill won 3 Premier League titles and was named Bolton Wanderers Players' Player of the Year in 2008-09 season. Cahill has also played for the English national team between 2010 and 2018 and has scored 5 goals in the 61 appearances that he has made for them.
Another retired footballer on the list of top scoring defenders in Premier League history, Steve Watson is a 46-year-old former English footballer who managed to scored 26 goals at Premier League level during his career.
He only served English clubs during his career and scored a total of 32 goals for them at league level, so his Premier League goals actually comprise 81% of all the goals he has scored at league level.
From among all the 26 goals Steve Watson has scored at Premier League level 14 have been scored for Everton and during the time he served them which is actually between 2000 and 2005. Although Everton is not the club Watson has served the most during his career - that club is Newcastle United whom he has served for 8 years between 1990 and 1998, it is the club for whom he has scored the most number of goals.
As mentioned above, Watson has scored 14 goals for Everton while although he has served Newcastle United more and also has made more appearances for them - actually 208, he could manage to score only 12 goals for them.
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The first French footballer on the list of top scoring defenders in Premier League history, William Gallas is a 43-year-old retired footballer who has scored 25 goals at Premier League level during his career and for three clubs, namely Arsenal, Chelsea, and Tottenham Hotspur. From among all his 25 Premier League goals, Chelsea and Arsenal have the same share of 12 and Tottenham only one.
Chelsea is the club Gallas has served the most during his career; actually for 5 years between 2001 and 2006. It is also the club Gallas has made the most number of appearances for (159). And it is also the club Gallas won all his club titles with; actually 2 consecutive Premier League titles in 2004-05 and 2005-06 season, one Football League Cup in 2004-05 season and one FA Community Shield in 2005.
Despite all this, Chelsea in not the club Gallas has scored the most number of goals for; as already mentioned above he scored the same number of goals (12) for Chelsea and Arsenal during his career. The retired French footballer also served his country’s national team between 2002 and 2010 and during this time scored 5 goals in the 84 appearances that he made for them.
Occupying the 10th position on the list of highest scoring defenders in EPL of all time, Julian Dicks is a 52-year-old retired English footballer who has served only two Premier League clubs during his career: Liverpool and West Ham United with the latter having a greater share of Dicks’ years of service.
He actually served West Ham in two time periods: From 1988 to 1993 where they didn’t compete in the Premier League - they actually competed in Division 2 and 1 which are the third tiers of English football league system, and from 1994 to 1999 where they competed in the Premier League.
Dicks scored a total of 50 goals for West Ham during his career from among which 29 were scored in the first period (from 1988 to 1993), and 21 in the second period (1994 to 1999) where the Hammers actually competed in the Premier League.
The retired English footballer served Liverpool only for one season, namely 1993-94 season which was in between the two time periods he served West Ham, and during this time scored 3 goals in the 24 appearances for them. Dicks never served the English national team but was a member of England B team which is actually a secondary team in support of the main England national team and also made two appearances for them.
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Sharing the 10th position with Julian Dicks and another footballer form Ecuador who comes next on the list of top scoring defenders in Premier League ever, Kieran Richardson is a 36-year-old English footballer who is currently serving the Championship club, Cardiff City.
All the goals Richardson has scored during his career have been scored for four clubs: Manchester United, West Bromwich Albion, Sunderland, and Fulham actually when they competed in the Premier League. So, all Richardson’s goals have been scored at Premier League level to this date.
And what is the share of each team mentioned above from Richardson’s goals? Here are the results: Manchester United 2, West Bromwich Albion 3, Sunderland 14, and Fulham 5. So, as you see, Sunderland has the highest share with 14 goals which is from almost 3 to 7 time higher than other clubs Richardson has served during his career. Sunderland is also the club served the most - actually for 5 years between 2007 and 2012 - and made the most number of appearances for: 134.
Despite all this, Richardson has won all his club trophies with Manchester United which are actually one Premier League title in 2006-07 season, one Football League Cup in 2005-06 season, and one FA Community Shield trophy in 2003.
It is also noteworthy to mention that Richardson has not only played as a defender but also as a central midfielder and a winger. He served the English national team between 2006 and 2007 and during this time scored 2 goals in the 8 appearances that he made for them.
The last but not least on the list of highest scoring defenders in EPL of all time who also shares the 10th position on the list with the two previous footballers mentioned above, Luis Antonio Valencia is a 35-year-old Ecuadorian footballer who is not yet retired but has also no club; he’s actually a free agent right now. Valencia actually scored all his Premier League goals for two clubs: Manchester United and Wigan Athletic indeed when they competed in the Premier League between 2006 and 2009.
Manchester United actually gets a higher share of Valencia’s Premier League goals: 17 goals which is two times higher than the 7 goals Valencia has scored for the Latics. United is also the club Valencia has served the most during his career - actually for 10 years between 2010 and 2009 and even more than his mother club, El Nacional, whom he served 2 years between 2003 and 2005.
Valencia has also won almost all his club trophies with Manchester United with some of them being two Premier League titles in 2010-11 and 2012-13 seasons, one FA Cup in 2015-16 season and three FA Community Shield trophies in 2010, 2013 and 2016.