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Over 200 players have scored hat-tricks in the Premier League, yet they still remain rare enough to inspire a special kind of reverence.
One player netting three goals in a single game is rare, but there were still 12 of them in the top flight 2020/21 season.
They all deserve remembering – from Eric Cantona’s first in Leeds’ 5-0 win over Tottenham in August 1992 to the most recent, Bruno Fernandes’ in Manchester United’s 5-1 thrashing of Leeds three weeks ago.
But only a select few can really lay claim to being truly iconic. Here are Star Sport’s top 10 Premier League hat-tricks…
Southampton 6-1 Aston Villa – May 16, 2015
Sergio Aguero holds the record of the most Premier League hat-tricks, having netted a whopping 12, and yet none are particularly memorable, generally coming in Manchester City thrashings.
By contrast, Mane has scored just two hat-tricks, but one of them happens to be the fastest in the league’s 29-year history.
The Senegalese forward took just two minutes and 56 seconds to put Saints 3-0 up at St Mary’s against Villa that day.
The goals themselves are not that memorable – two close-range shots into empty nets following chaotic Villa defending and a nicely-taken side-footer into the top corner – but the speed will stand the test of time.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
Nottingham Forest 1-8 Manchester United – February 6, 1999
The Manchester United manager did not earn his title of “Super Sub” for no reason.
Only Jermain Defoe (24 goals), Olivier Giroud (20) and Javier Hernandez (19) have netted more than Solskjaer, who grabbed 17 in his time with United.
The fact that four of those came in a 12-minute spell in the closing stages of a match against Nottingham Forest is pretty remarkable.
A trademark tap-in, one smashed into the top corner, the hat-trick strike volleyed in and a final side-footer into the bottom corner barely even prompted much of a celebration from the curly-haired Norwegian.
Newcastle 1-4 Liverpool – August 30, 1998
Owen scored 10 hat-tricks in total for Liverpool across all competitions, eight of which came in the Premier League.
He became the Premier League’s youngest scorer of a hat-trick against Sheffield Wednesday in February 1998 at 18 years and 62 days, but his second at the start of the following season is more fondly remembered.
Owen, still only 18, scored two from close range within a few minutes to make it 2-0 before rounding it off with a brilliant run and chip over Shay Given. Textbook stuff.
Leeds 4-3 Liverpool – November 4, 2000
Games don’t come much better than this for a striker: four goals against fierce rivals in a closely-fought match in front of a raucous crowd.
Viduka got 17 goals for Leeds in the 2000/01 Premier League campaign – the same number as Thierry Henry – but he was on fire against Liverpool that day in particular.
Leeds were 2-0 down thanks to some sloppy defending from set pieces before the Australian striker came to their rescue.
He chipped the first before half-time, headed the second from the near post to make it 2-2, spun and smashed a low finish off the inside of the post for 3-3 and then kept his composure to dink a classy winning fourth over Sander Westerveld.
What is your favourite Premier League hat-trick? Have your say in the comments section below.
Manchester United 8-2 Arsenal – August 28, 2011
You know it’s an iconic game when it has its own Wikipedia page.
A penalty save from David de Gea, not one but two stunning curlers from Ashley Young, a lovely dink from Nani and a red card for Carl Jenkinson all helped create one of the most memorable scorelines in the Premier League’s history.
Rooney was simply one of the chief architect’s in Arsenal’s demise that day.
His efforts came via a beautiful free-kick over the wall, a nicely disguised free-kick into the bottom corner and a composed penalty.
Leicester 3-3 Arsenal – August 27, 1997
The Dutch master was truly on song this day.
He started by accepting a short corner and placing a perfect shot into the far corner from the edge of the area, doubled Arsenal’s lead with a smart touch and lifted finish over the onrushing goalkeeper and later made it 3-2 with a quite frankly absurd piece of skill.
Accepting a chipped pass from midfield, Bergkamp takes one touch to control it, one to bamboozle the defender, a third to kill it on the ground and a fourth to stroke it into the net.
The fact that Leicester denied Arsenal three points with a spirited comeback does little to take away from Bergkamp’s mastery.
Liverpool 5-1 Norwich – December 4, 2013
Suarez absolutely loved playing against Norwich. The Uruguayan scored a staggering 12 times in just six outings against the canaries, as well as contributing three assists during his time with Liverpool.
This particular day saw him at his very best as Brendan Rodgers’ exciting side put Norwich to the sword.
A dipping volley from 40 yards got things up and running before a near-post finish from a corner made it 2-0 after 29 minutes.
His stunning snap-shot half-volley from 18 yards completed the hat-trick, but he wasn’t done, curling in a 30-yard free-kick for good measure.
Simply one of the highest quality goalscoring displays you’re likely to see.
Middlesbrough 3-3 Liverpool – August 17, 1996
This is iconic, but not for the quality of goals.
Ravanelli’s strikes consisted of a blasted penalty, a back-post tap-in and a scuffed shot on the turn, but his contribution was all about the emotion and narrative of that day.
The silver-haired Italian had joined Boro from Juventus on a £7million transfer and was making his debut in the Premier League.
He became the first player to score a hat-trick on his Premier League debut that day – and his carefree shirt-over-the-head celebration endeared him to fans.
The Italian netted 16 times in the 1996/97 season, but Boro were still relegated.
Newcastle 4-3 Leicester City – February 2, 1997
Shearer is the Premier League’s all-time record goalscorer, with 260 goals and he has 11 hat-tricks – one short of Aguero’s record.
This one was a particular classic because it came when Newcastle were 3-1 down against Leicester and was wrapped up in injury-time with a winner.
First Shearer took the net off with a rocket of a free-kick in the 77th minute. Then he equalised with a low strike into the bottom corner in the 83rd.
And finally he capped it with a back-post tap-in after a flowing team move. His trademark one arm raised celebration was, of course, on show thereafter.
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Arsenal 4-2 Liverpool – April 9, 2004
One of the matches which showcased Arsenal’s brilliance during their famous Invincibles season – and it was defined by their talisman.
A cool finish into the corner from Robert Pires’ chipped through ball got Henry underway to make it 1-1 and – after Michael Owen and Pires had traded goals – that’s when the classic Henry came out.
Collecting a pass deep in midfield, the Frenchman danced past Didi Hamann, before a balletic sidestep sent Jamie Carragher and Igor Biscan into another postcode and he was in to produce a trademark open-bodied side-foot finish.
His third was a touch fortunate, coming from a ricochet involving keeper Jerzy Dudek, but it was deserved.
Arsenal maintained their unbeaten league record, went seven points clear at the top and banished their recent woes from FA Cup and Champions League exits.
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