Here in a trip down nostalgia lane we’ve looked the greats to wear the iconic no. 9 shirt during the Premier League era – with plenty stats, facts & history to whet your appetite.
Andrew Alexander Cole (1993-1995)
Andy Cole joined table-topping NUFC (Division One, now Championship) in February 1993 for a then club record £1.75m from Bristol City where he’d established himself as one of the hottest prospects in British football. In the 92/93 campaign he scored 12 in 12 as we cruised to the Division One title.
In our return to the Premier League Andy netted 34 times in 40 league appearances seeing us to a third place finish and firmly cementing himself in Kevin Keegan’s “entertainers”. His final tally for the 93/94 season was 41 goals in all competitions, breaking the club’s goal-scoring record for a single season (a record set by Hughie Gallagher nearly 70 years prior). Cole was subsequently awarded the PFA Young Player of the Year award 93/94.
94/95 began with 9 goals in 18 games before was controversially sold to Manchester United for a British record transfer fee in a deal worth £7m (£6m + £1m-rated Keith Gillespie). Kevin Keegan then famously confronted NUFC fans on the Milburn steps asking for patience. “I’ve got to be allowed to manage. If you think I’m making a mess of things then chant for me to go.” Keegan proclaimed.
Leslie Ferdinand (1995-1997)
Les Ferdinand joined NUFC in 1995 for £6m from Queens Park Rangers (with £600,000 going to former side Hayes from whom he’d left for a minute £30,000 + a 10% sell-on clause). 3 years prior we’d had a £3.3m bid rejected from QPR during our 92/93 promotion season.
In his first season on Tyneside Les netted 29 times as we came within touching distance of the Premiership, famously dropping a 12-point lead and finishing runners-up to Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United. In his second season Ferdinand netted a further 21 times before being sold to his boyhood club Tottenham Hotspur for £6m. In his 2 seasons at NUFC Ferdinand collected 2x Premiership runners-up medals.
Alan Shearer (1996-2006)
Where do we begin with Alan Shearer? He turned down Ferguson’s Manchester United to join Kevin Keegan’s NUFC for a world transfer-record £15m in July 1996 – a club where he’d ultimately spend the rest of his career and become a Newcastle United legend. Here’s some record-breaking stats from his time at NUFC:
- NUFC’s highest ever goalscorer (206 all competitions)
- NUFC’s top European goalscorer (30)
- Fastest Premier League goal by an NUFC player – 10 seconds vs Manchester City, January 2003 (H)
- 2nd most expensive signing in NUFC history (£15m, bested only by Michael Owen 9 years later for £16m)
- Premier League’s top goalscorer (260)
- Most goals scored in a Premier League game – 5 vs Sheffield Wednesday, September 1999
Not content with that, here’s a list of accolades during his time at St. James’ Park:
- Premier League runner up 1996/97
- FA Cup finalist 1998 & 1999
- UEFA Cup top goalscorer 2003/04 & 2004/05
- PFA Players’ Player of the Year 1997
- Premier League Player of the Month September 1998, August 2000, December 2002 & October 2003
- Inducted into English football Hall of Fame in 2004
- FWA Tribute Award 2001
You can see a full breakdown of Alan Shearer’s 206 here.
Obafemi Martins (2006-2009)
Obafemi Martins signed for Newcastle after handing in a transfer request at Italian side Inter Milan. He joined us on the 24th August 2006 for an approximate £10.1m fee, being handed the #9 shirt vacated by the recently retired Alan Shearer.
After a relatively successful first season on Tyneside where he netted 17 times (notably scoring the unofficially 9th hardest shot ever recorded in English football, clocked at 84MPH in a 3-2 away win to Tottenham on the 14th January 2007) he struggled somewhat during his 2nd season, with new manager Sam Allardyce prefering a strike force consisting of Mark Viduka and Michael Owen, although subsequently being returned to the side by Kevin Keegan he never really regained the form he’d displayed earlier in his NUFC career. During the 07/08 campaign he netted 10 in 31, and during our relegation of 08/09 he netted 8 in 25.
Although initially pledging to help return us to the Premier League, following embarrassing 6-1 defeat to Leyton Orient Martins left for German side VLF Wolfsburg for £9m.
Andrew Thomas Carroll (2006-2011)
Andy started his career with the Newcastle United academy, signing his first professional contract in 2006. He made his first team debut on the 2nd November 2006 in a 1-0 UEFA Cup win over Palermo aged 17 years and 300 days, making him the youngest ever player to represent NUFC in a European competition. Carroll’s first league appearance came on 20th October 2008, but subsequently made only 16 appearances (scoring 3) that season amongst competition from fellow forward Ameobi, Owen, Viduka & Martins.
Following relegation Carroll established himself in the NUFC first team during our Championship campaign of 09/10 where he finished the season as our top scorer, netting 19 in all competitions (17 league) – firmly cementing himself as one of the most promising forwards in English football.
As the 2010/11 Premier League campaign got under way Carroll was awarded the #9 shirt and did not disappoint, netting 11 times in 20 appearances. In October 2010 he signed a new 5-year contract but only 3 months later he left Newcastle for an astronomical £35m fee, making him the eighth most expensive footballer of all-time, and also the most expensive British footballer of all-time.
Papiss Demba Cisse (2012 to date)
Cisse joined Newcastle on the 21st January 2012 for a £9.3m fee. He was instrumental in arguably NUFC’s most successful campaign since the days of Kevin Keegan/Sir Bobby Robson. In just 14 games he netted an amazing 13 times. On the 2nd of May 2012 Cisse netted the “best goal of his career”, curling a 37-yard volley with the outside of his boot into the far right corner against Chelsea, subsequently winning the Premier League Goal of the Season award.
Since then Cisse’s time at Newcastle has been indifferent, often looking devoid of confidence and lacking the killer instinct he showed during the 11/12 campaign. Since then his record has been as follows: 47 apps, 13 goals (12/13), 26 apps, 4 goals (13/14), 22 apps & 11 goals (14/15).