Pep Guardiola reached a goalscoring landmark as Manchester City thrashed Leeds on Tuesday, with the first goal in the club’s remarkable 7-0 win the 500th scored under the Spaniard in the Premier League.
Guardiola’s side has become one of the finest of the Premier League era in recent campaigns, winning three of the past four league titles and setting a whole host of divisional records.
Following the club’s 500th goal under Guardiola, we look at the fastest managers to have reached the goalscoring milestone.
Rafa Benitez: 329 games
Rafael Benitez has developed a reputation for pragmatism during his Premier League career, with a focus on defensive organisation and providing attacking threat on the counter.
The Spaniard ranks sixth amongst the fastest managers to have reached 500 goals, however, having achieved the feat in 329 fixtures in the division.
Benitez’s highest-scoring Premier League campaign came in 2008/09 as Liverpool finished as runners-up to Manchester United, scoring 77 league goals with Steven Gerrard (16) and Fernando Torres (14) leading the way for the Reds.
Benitez later had spells at Chelsea and Newcastle, before his appointment as manager of Liverpool’s Merseyside rivals Everton last summer.
Jose Mourinho: 289 games
Jose Mourinho ranks fifth, reaching 500 goals in 289 games in England’s top division.
Mourinho’s early success in the Premier League was built on defensive strength with Chelsea winning back-to-back league titles in 2005 and 2006, the first of those achieved with a record low of just 15 goals conceded.
Mourinho’s side posted identical figures of 72 goals scored during each of those title triumphs, with Frank Lampard finishing as the west London side’s leading scorer on each occasion.
The following season (2006/07) saw Didier Drogba win the Premier League’s Golden Boot despite a drop in goals scored, whilst the highest-scoring Mourinho season came during his second spell at Chelsea as the Blues hit 73 goals to win the 2014/15 title.
Arsene Wenger: 271 games
Arsene Wenger took 271 games to reach 500 goals in the Premier League, with the Frenchman’s arrival at Arsenal in the mid-nineties proving the catalyst behind the Gunners’ greatest triumphs of the modern era.
Wenger’s first full season saw the north London side win a Premier League and FA Cup double, before adding a second domestic double four seasons later in 2001/02.
Wenger also led Arsenal during the club’s most famous campaign, winning the Premier League in 2003/04 without losing a single fixture, becoming the first side since Preston North End 115 years previously to complete a top-flight campaign unbeaten.
Thierry Henry was often the chief source of goals for Wenger’s best Arsenal sides, winning a record four Premier League Golden Boots under his compatriot and becoming the first player to score 20+ goals in five consecutive campaigns.
Alex Ferguson: 265 games
The most successful manager in the division’s history with a record 13 title-winning teams, Sir Alex Ferguson remains the undisputed greatest when it comes to Premier League managers.
Ferguson guided Manchester United to the inaugural Premier League title in 1992/93, ending the Red Devils’ 26-year wait for a top-flight crown and starting an era of unprecedented domestic dominance.
13 – Sir Alex Ferguson won 13 top-flight English league titles as a manager – more than twice as many as any other manager in the history of the league and seven more than his nearest rivals; George Ramsay and Bob Paisley. Legendary. (3/10) pic.twitter.com/bmDpIaZ0Fd
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 31, 2019
United won seven of the first nine editions of the relaunched top division, with their highest-scoring season coming in 1999/2000 to set a then-record of 97 goals scored from 38 games.
Ferguson reached 500 goals in 265 games in the division, the third-fastest of any Premier League manager.
Jurgen Klopp: 234 games
Jurgen Klopp was the man to break Ferguson’s long-standing record, reaching 500 goals in 234 league games at Liverpool.
The early editions of Klopp’s side were full of entertainment, mixing forward threat with a susceptibility at the back as the German sought balance.
Several shrewd signings transformed Liverpool into one of Europe’s best sides, with Klopp guiding the Reds to back-to-back Champions League finals – winning the latter in 2019 – before ending the club’s three decade wait for a top-flight league title in 2019/20.
The firepower of Klopp’s side saw Liverpool score 84+ league goals in three consecutive campaigns between 2017 and 2019, with Mohamed Salah twice winning the Premier League’s Golden Boot during that period.
Pep Guardiola: 207 games
Phil Foden scored the 500th Premier League goal under Pep Guardiola’s management against Leeds, netting the first in an emphatic 7-0 win for the defending champions at the Etihad.
Guardiola has transformed City into one of the Premier League’s most watchable sides in recent campaigns, winning three titles in four seasons and often producing some spellbinding football.
City won the title with a record 100 points during the 2017/18 season, scoring a record-breaking 106 goals in the process.
Man City have now scored 500 Premier League goals in 207 games since Pep Guardiola took charge, at least 51 more than any other team in the division.
That’s 2.42 per game. 🤯 pic.twitter.com/l7BpLyMNVi
— William Hill (@WilliamHill) December 14, 2021
Guardiola’s team also registered over a century of goals (102) during last season’s title success, with City a side capable of blowing away opponents when their forward line clicks into gear.
Sergio Aguero leads the way for goals scored under Guardiola with 82, the Argentine followed in the rankings by Raheem Sterling (76) and Gabriel Jesus (52).
Read – Rating all of Arsenal’s captains in the Premier League era
Read Also – Midfield Magicians: The dreadlocked dynamo, Ruud Gullit
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