How many games it’ll take Harry Kane to beat Rooney and Shearer’s records

Quick Reads

Harry Kane was in brilliant form throughout England’s Euro 2020 qualifying games, and he is climbing up the all-time goalscoring list. 

The striker became the first England player to score in every game in a qualifying campaign, scoring 12 goals across the eight fixtures.

His strike against Kosovo also saw him become the first player to score in six straight England appearances. And it means he is well on his way to surpassing Wayne Rooney as England’s record goalscorer.

His record now stands at 32 goals in 45 appearances, putting him sixth in the list of all-time goalscorers, behind only Michael Owen (40), Jimmy Greaves (44), Gary Lineker (48), Bobby Charlton (49) and Wayne Rooney (53).

But Kane averages a remarkable 0.71 goals per game for his country, a better strike rate than all five of the players above him. For comparison, Rooney got his 53 England goals in 120 appearances at a rate of 0.44 goals per game.

With that in mind, we’ve done the maths to calculate how long it will take Kane to catch Rooney if he continues his current rate of scoring, obviously on the basis that he stays injury-free.

– To draw level with Owen in fifth place on 40 goals, it should take Kane another 11 games. Now we’re not making any Euro 2020 predictions just yet, but that could be the final at Wembley everything goes to plan next summer. Just saying.

– To go fourth and overtake Greaves, it will take Kane another 18 games – a figure that he should achieve by the start of 2021.

– To move level with Lineker in third place on 48 goals, Kane will have to score 16 more goals and it should take another 23 England appearances for him to do that – which roughly takes us to 2022.

– To reach half a century of England goals, he needs another 18 goals and at his current strike rate, he will get to that figure on his 71st England appearance.

– To become England’s all-time top scorer, overtaking Rooney on 53 goals, it will take Kane another 31 England appearances. Approximately this would be around 2023, when Kane would still only be 29 years old and would be winning his 76th cap.

Of course, it’s impossible to predict what will be happening in four years time and Kane would count himself lucky if he were to remain so prolific while also avoiding injuries.

However, let it sink in that should everything remain the same, Kane will break Rooney’s record in 44 fewer England appearances.

Premier League record

With another six goals from 11 games for Tottenham in the Premier League already this season, Kane has moved to 131 goals from 189 appearances in the competition.

He is currently 13th on the all-time goalscorers list, but he could well be in the top 10 by the end of the season with 18 needed to draw level with Les Ferdinand and 19 needed to move joint ninth with Michael Owen.

But the prospect that will really excite Kane is the honour of becoming the Premier League’s all-time leading goalscorer – and he’s bang on track to do it.

Indeed, he has only eight goals fewer than Alan Shearer had after his first 189 Premier League games, but whereas Shearer was 28 at that point, Kane is only 26.

Shearer, of course, continued to score regularly until he was 35 and hung up his boots with a ridiculous record of 260 goals in 441 Premier League games at a rate of 0.59 per game.

That is better than Kane’s current scoring rate of 0.69 per game, but having just passed the halfway mark to Shearer’s total, the Spurs man only needs to play another 189 games to set a new record should he continue at the same pace.

He would do remarkably well to do so for the six or so seasons it would take, of course, but the very fact we’re discussing it shows what a tremendous goalscorer has become. The man is a phenomenon.


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