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Ranking the 5 best strikers of the Premier League era

When Sergio Aguero departed English football, there was a lot of debate where he stands in among the greatest we’ve seen on these shores. He certainly ranks among the 5 best strikers of the Premier League era, but where? And who else makes up the list?

You’ll probably disagree with the order here, but here’s my top 5 forwards! Feel free to argue your case in the comments below.

#5 – Didier Drogba (Chelsea)

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A Chelsea icon and one of the most feared strikers of his generation, Didier Drogba was unstoppable at his peak. Jose Mourinho signed the forward from Marseille for what turned out to be a modest £24million.

He epitomised everything good about those early Mourinho Chelsea teams. He was intelligent and skilful, with pace and power. And possessed an eye for goal that produced on the big stage again and again.

Often, Drogba would produce a goal to decide the biggest games, especially Cup finals where he thrived. He won the Premier League Golden Boot on 2 occasions, and is the kind of goal scorer that Chelsea have struggled to replace since his departure in 2015. Iconic.

#4 – Wayne Rooney (Everton, Manchester United)

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English football’s wonderkid Wayne Rooney burst onto the scene at Everton, but it was at Manchester United where he really made his name in world football. A £30million outlay for an 18 year-old seemed like a gamble at the time, but what a signing that turned out to be.

United’s record goal scorer, England’s record goal scorer, with a highlights reel of some of the most spectacular goals you’ll see. Rooney brought an energy and ability rarely seen in a modern striker.

Like Drogba, Rooney loved the biggest stages, and who can forget the iconic bicycle kick in the Manchester Derby?

#3 – Thierry Henry (Arsenal)

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The Arsene Wenger years at Arsenal were packed with star names and big characters. One who epitomised those swashbuckling teams was Thierry Henry. Respected globally, Arsenal’s slick attack was spearheaded by one of the most technically gifted forwards to have graced the Premier League.

Henry came from Juventus with very little fanfare, and initially as a winger. But Wenger managed Henry at Monaco, so knew the talent he possessed. Even he can’t have imagined how prolific he’d become.

Currently the club’s all-time leading goal scorer, Henry also won the Golden Boot in 3 consecutive years.

#2 Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)

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Sergio Aguero’s move to England in 2011 was seismic for Manchester City and the Premier League. With City’s new-found wealth came a renewed expectation to win trophies, especially the Premier League itself. And when that trophy arrived, Aguero’s role will be forever etched in history.

His winning goal with the last shot of the 2011-12 season sealed the club’s first title of many, in the most dramatic fashion. His “Agueeerrrooooooo!” moment is probably the most memorable in Premier League history.

But let’s not forget just how prolific and central to City’s play he was at his peak. Currently their highest-ever goal scorer and unlikely to be surpassed, Aguero will forever be a Premier League great.

#1 – Alan Shearer (Blackburn Rovers, Newcastle United)

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You can’t possibly talk about the best 5 strikers of the Premier League era, without mentioning Alan Shearer! Still the highest-ever goal scorer in the Premier League – although a certain Harry Kane will soon have something to say about that – Shearer was a powerhouse of a striker.

For context, the Premier League in its early years was a physical and demanding league. Quite often it was survival of the fittest – and nastiest. And Shearer would often come out on top against the very toughest defenders.

A streetwise player, physical, with unbelievable shooting ability, Shearer was the prime example of a 90s centre forward. His eye for goal won an unlikely title for Blackburn Rovers in 1995. For a while, his ruthless striker’s instinct was truly world class, and there will never be another one like him.

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