England’s 5-0 thrashing of Albania saw captain Harry Kane make his return to form, the striker netting a first-half hat-trick to edge the Three Lions ever close to World Cup qualification.
That treble – which was the first ‘perfect’ hat-trick scored by an England player since David Platt in 1993 – was the Tottenham Hotspur forward’s fourth for his country at senior level, while it also moved him up to fourth on the all-time scorer’s list on 44 goals in just 66 games.
Equally, the 28-year-old has also edged himself into the top five list for most hat-trick’s by an Englishman at international level, joining an elite batch of forwards in the process.
Here’s a look then at who else makes up that top five for most hat-trick’s in an England shirt.
Viv Woodward – 4
An unfamiliar name to most, Vivian Woodward’s England career spanned eight years, beginning way back in 1903 as he netted twice on debut in a 4-0 win over Ireland.
That impressive brace set the tone for what would be a prolific next few years, the Tottenham and Chelsea forward netting 29 goals in just 23 appearances at international level, ensuring his place as the nation’s leading scorer until he was surpassed by Tom Finney in 1958.
Also the captain of Great Britain’s Olympic Gold medal-winning sides in 1908 and 1912, Woodward netted the first of his international hat-trick’s in a 7-1 thrashing of Wales in the 1907-08 British Home Championship, before bagging four a few months later in an 11-1 mauling of Austria in Vienna – the friendly also seeing Frank Bradshaw net a treble.
His third hat-trick for his country came in May 1909 as he plundered three in an 8-2 victory over Hungary in Budapest, before returning to haunt Austria once again by netting another treble the following day as England ran out 8-1 winners.
Woodward’s England career came to an end in 1911, while his playing career at club level was brought to a halt after his participation in the First World War, with a thigh injury sustained in service essentially bringing his playing days to a close.
Bobby Charlton – 4
One of the most iconic figures in English football, Bobby Charlton was the undoubted star of his generation, playing a pivotal role in the nation’s one and only World Cup triumph back in 1966 on home soil, alongside brother Jack.
The Manchester United icon made his international debut in 1958, endearing himself to supporters quickly after netting a sumptuous volley in a 4-0 win over rivals Scotland at Hampden Park, before netting a brace on his second outing in a 2-1 victory over Portugal at Wembley.
His first treble would come a year later in an 8-1 thrashing of the United States in Los Angeles, before he bagged his second hat-trick in October 1960, firing in three in a 9-0 drubbing of Luxembourg in a World Cup qualifier.
Charlton bagged another in an 8-0 win over Mexico to continue his blistering start to life at international level, with his fourth and final hat-trick coming against Switzerland in June 1963 to take him level with Finney and Nat Lofthouse on 30 England goals, before eventually surpassing those two great figures with a strike against Wales a few months later.
A member of four World Cup squads, his international career came to an end following the 1970 edition in Mexico, having made a then-record appearance total of 106 caps, while also netting another record tally of 49 goals in that time, with that standing until Wayne Rooney netted his 50th strike in 2015.
Harry Kane – 4
All the talk may be about Harry Kane’s dwindling club form, yet the skipper continues to perform for his country, bagging his fourth international hat-trick in the win over Albania and capping the treble in style with a stunning, acrobatic volley on the stroke of half-time.
With just a point required against minnows San Marino to secure a place in Qatar next winter, the 28-year-old is set to once again lead his into a major tournament, having done so to great success at the World Cup in 2018 and at this summer’s European Championship.
After a disappointing tournament debut at Euro 2016, the prolific forward came alive in Russia two years later, finishing the competition as the Golden Boot winner after plundering six goals, a tally that included a group stage hat-trick in a 6-1 win against Panama, comprised of two emphatic penalties and a fluky second-half goal.
He would bag his second three-goal haul a year later in a crushing 4-0 triumph over Bulgaria, before continuing his rich vein of form with another hat-trick just a few months later against Montenegro, the eventual 7-0 scoreline securing Gareth Southgate’s men a place at Euro 2020.
His four goals in the knockout stages of that tournament not only aided in England’s surge to the final, but also ensured he is now the joint-record holder for most goals scored at major competitions by an Englishman, alongside Gary Lineker on ten goals.
Not only does he seemingly have ample opportunity to surpass the former Leicester City striker, but is also likely to better all-time leading scorer Wayne Rooney, with Kane now only nine goals behind his former teammate’s tally of 53.
Gary Lineker – 5
The aforementioned Lineker enjoyed a stellar international career, playing a pivotal role in England’s semi-final run at the 1990 World Cup under Bobby Robson, while also having finished with the Golden Boot in Mexico four years earlier after netting six times in the competition.
He had originally made his international debut while on the books at Leicester in 1984 and would net his first-hattrick a year later, firing in three as Robson’s men recorded a 5-0 victory over Turkey in World Cup qualification.
After a prolific solitary season at Everton in the 1985/86 campaign, Lineker continued his form at that summer’s tournament, memorably netting a pivotal hat-trick against Poland in the group stage to ensure England’s progression, albeit with the Three Lions dumped out in the quarter-final’s against Diego Maradona’s Argentina.
His relentless goalscoring form continued on the international stage as he bagged four in a 4-2 victory over Spain in Madrid in February 1987, before netting a treble later that year – again against Turkey – in an 8-0 thrashing.
His fifth and final hat-trick for his country came four years later in a 4-2 friendly win over Malaysia, with the then Tottenham man eventually retiring from international duty following the 1992 European Championships, having fallen one shy of Bobby Charlton’s goalscoring record on 48 goals.
Jimmy Greaves – 6
Leading the way, perhaps unsurprisingly, is the late, great Jimmy Greaves, the prolific forward having been arguably the finest goalscorer England has ever produced, with his international record testament to that.
After making his debut in 1959, the legendary striker would go on to score 44 goals for his country in just 57 caps across the next eight years, with that tally currently leaving him alongside Kane in joint-fourth on the all-time scoring list.
The former Spurs man bagged his first treble in the 9-0 win over Luxembourg in October 1960 – the same game in which teammate Charlton also completed a hat-trick – before adding his second in a stunning 9-3 win over Scotland a year later at Wembley.
He would follow that up with a hat-trick against Peru in May 1962 and then recorded his first four-goal haul in an England shirt the following year, producing a devastating display to help crush Northern Ireland in an 8-3 home victory, with Terry Paine also scoring three times in the match.
Greaves would inflict even more misery on the same opposition in October 1964 as he netted three in a 4-3 win away in Belfast, before scoring his sixth and final hat-trick in a 6-1 win over Norway in the build-up to the 1966 World Cup – the second time he had scored four in one game for his country.
As Sir Alf Ramsey’s men surged to victory that summer, Greaves was forced to watch on from the sidelines after failing to regain his place in the side following an injury picked up in the group stage, with his replacement Geoff Hurst netting a hat-trick in the final. The top scorer in the history of the English top-flight (357), he would make just three more appearances for his country before retiring in 1967.
The post Ranking the five players with the most hat-tricks for England first appeared on The Football Faithful.
Author: Robbie Walls