Teddy Sheringham is one of the greatest strikers in the history of the Premier League and I will fight you if you think differently. His legacy speaks for itself, and it’s a damn shame that he isn’t remembered as fondly as he should be.
The first – and perhaps only – thing you need to do is look at his track record. He graced the likes of Nottingham Forest, Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester United and West Ham with his presence and there was even a Champions League final goal in there somewhere.
Teddy lived for the big moments, and his true never say die attitude was a rarity in strikers and still is to this day. In terms of the national squad, the now-50-year-old will forever be known as one of the most underrated strikers for England and he deserved more than what he got – common theme that for the Three Lions, with the likes of Ian Wright and Andy Cole.
“When he left Manchester United, I didn’t think Teddy would still be playing now,”
“In a way, it is not surprising because pace was never a factor in his game and he still has the same intelligence.”
Sir Alex Ferguson
With a career spanning nearly a quarter of a century, you cannot deny Sheringham’s phenomenal longevity within the sport. Not many men can claim to have lasted as long as he did – whilst maintaining a respectable level of play – and only one can say they hold the title of the oldest player to score in a Premier League match; Teddy, himself.
With that big grin on his face, you could always rely on him to pop up with a vital equaliser or winning goal when it was needed. Then again, if he wasn’t scoring, then the Englishman was often found setting up his teammates and bringing others into the game.
When you talk about it purely from an ability point of view, then there is still no doubt regarding his greatness. Teddy had a versatility to his game that was unrivalled, with his vision and ability to read the game superseding 95% of forwards in the world.
Then if you needed it, he could transition into a more creative role where his assists came in extremely handy as his pace slowed down in the later years of his career. Sheringham was the ultimate opportunist and every other week you’d see his name on the scoresheet, much to the annoyance of his opponents.
All you’ve got to do is just look at the numbers. Over 300 career goals including a brief stint in Sweden, aswell as being able to replicate his form and adapt with age for United, Spurs, West Ham, Colchester, Forest and more. He scored 11 goals for England including two at UEFA Euro 1996 and was instrumental in a string of top partnerships that terrorised defences for years.
He’s in the English Football Hall of Fame, won the first ever Premier League Golden Boot and has even taken his quality down to the Championship when helping the Hammers gain promotion back to the top flight through the play-offs.
Essentially, he’s just a beautiful human really. On the pitch there are few fans who can say they didn’t look on in pure envy or joy depending on who they supported, and throughout his generation nobody else could really hold a candle to the things Teddy could do with a football at his feet.