sports gazette

Crouching Peter, hidden striker

Published: 3 Feb 2017

Scoring 100 Premier League goals is a tall order for any player and it should be acknowledged as a real achievement and contribution to the English game.

On the 1st February 2017, England forward Peter Crouch netted his 100th goal in a 1-1 draw for Stoke City at home to Everton. The 36-year-old has become a household name domestically, with his goal-scoring record and overall play epitomising the phrase ‘don’t judge a book by its cover.’

It is notable that a man of such towering physique, sitting comfortably at 6ft 7inches, isn’t just known for his presence but for his gift.

And this gift hasn’t been limited to club level football but has been broadcast via his 42 international appearances for the English national team, scoring 22 goals in the process, thus earning more than a goal every two games goal ratio.

Despite ‘Crouchy’, as he if affectionately known, nearing the end of a career, which has seen him ply his trade all over the country at various football clubs including Queen’s Park Rangers, Portsmouth, Aston Villa, Norwich City, Southampton, Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and now Stoke City, still provides a great threat to any opposition and is now equipped with vast experience that will benefit those at Stoke City who play around him.

The stats don’t lie either. Throughout his career, his transfer dealings have seen clubs spend in total of over £47 million for his services. He has amassed more Premier League goals than the likes of Arsenal’s Dennis Bergkamp, Liverpool and Chelsea forward Fernando Torres and 16 more goals than recent Ballon D’Or award winning and former Manchester United great Cristiano Ronaldo.

He has also assisted players more times than midfield genius Paul Scholes, who made 718 appearances, Manchester United and England legend David Beckham, and Arsenal's beloved French winger Robert Pires.

It is notable that a man of such towering physique, sitting comfortably at 6ft 7inches, isn’t just known for his presence but for his gift.

But Crouch is more than just a skilled footballer. He is also a fantastic personality, which endears him to supporters around the country. He openly mocks his appearance and has previously said: “I think I was 5ft 9in at birth”.

When asked “What would you be if you were not a footballer?” he famously responded: “A virgin.” This subsequently lead to Crouch being named as the funniest man in sport back in 2010 winning 24% of the overall votes in a poll created by popular television show 'A League of their own'. 

Back in the early dawns of his career when he was at Queens Park Rangers, he was nicknamed ‘Rodders’ for his resemblance to Nicolas Lyndhurst’s portrayal of Rodney Trotter in ‘Only Fools and Horses'.

He also has a trademark celebration which he introduced internationally after he scored for England in a pre-World Cup friendly match against Hungary. After scoring, ‘the robot’ was born and his robotic dancing goal celebration would define the man until his 100th goal, where the celebration made a return, showing signs that it needed some oiling. 

‘Crouchy’ is still going strong and will surely continue to build on his 100 Premier League goals this season with more Premier League appearances for Stoke City. When he does decide to hang up those size 12 football boots, it begs the question; who will take on the robot mantle? 

'He's tall
he's mad
he dances like y' dad
it's Peter Crouch!'

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