By News Team
Last Updated: 9th April 2020
The list of all-time Premier League assists makers doesn’t make for particularly surprising reading. Equally, nobody will be shocked to hear that Alan Shearer, Wayne Rooney and Sergio Aguero feature among the top goalscorers of the Premier League era.
You might not be able to guess, however, which players have appeared most frequently in the division. We run through the top ten.
Gareth Barry – 653 appearances
Perhaps not the most glamorous name on the list, but he’s certainly up there with the most consistent. Gareth Barry enjoyed a long and distinguished career, a consistent managerial favourite for his willingness to do the kind of dirty work that most players shy away from. The midfielder’s incredible tally of 653 Premier League appearances includes spells at Aston Villa, Manchester City, Everton and West Brom, and brought him a Premier League winners’ medal in 2012 with City.
Ryan Giggs – 632 appearances
Given the amazing fact that Ryan Giggs kept on playing in the country’s top division until the age of 40, the Welsh winger would be entitled to feel disappointed with second place in this list. His tally of 632 games in the Premier League, all for Manchester United, looked like it would never be broken until Barry came along. His all-time record for Premier League assists might not be, nor his incredible record haul of 13 title wins.
Frank Lampard – 609 appearances
Another golden boy of the game, Frank Lampard’s appearance record is arguably even more impressive than his 177-strong goal tally. While the majority of his 609 appearances were for Chelsea and West Ham, it was a loan spell at Manchester City in the twilight of his career that brought Lampard over the line to third place. The former midfielder, meanwhile, has three Premier League title wins to his name.
David James – 572 appearances
Given the relative physical demands of the position, it will come as a surprise to many that only two goalkeepers make this list, starting with David James. A true great of the Premier League era, former England shot-stopper James played for Liverpool, Aston Villa, West Ham, Manchester City and Portsmouth in a decorated career spanning 572 matches in the division.
Gary Speed – 535 appearances
The second Welshman on the list is the late, great Gary Speed. A national treasure and Premier League legend, Speed played 535 games for Leeds, Everton, Newcastle and Bolton Wanderers before going on to become Wales manager and sadly passing away in 2011.
James Milner – 534 appearances
Liverpool midfielder James Milner is impressively the only active player within the top ten and he sits only one appearance short of matching Speed’s haul of 535 appearances. In his 18-year Premier League career, Milner has appeared for Leeds, Newcastle, Aston Villa, Manchester City and now Liverpool. The 34-year-old has won two Premier League titles with City and it is expected that he will win his third this season with the Merseyside giants.
Emile Heskey – 516 appearances
Known as a real bruiser in Premier League history, Emile Heskey had a very successful career, with the Englishman the only striker to make the top ten list here. Heskey began his career with Leicester before moving to Liverpool, Birmingham, Wigan and finally ending his Premier League career with Aston Villa. Heskey scored 110 goals in 516 appearances, which sees him sit 22nd in the top 20 Premier League goalscorers of all-time list.
Mark Schwarzer – 514 appearances
Mark Schwarzer is the only non-British player to feature within the top ten and played for Middlesbrough, Fulham, Chelsea and Leicester over his incredible career. The Australian amazingly became the first-ever player to win back-to-back Premier League titles with different clubs, winning with Chelsea in 2015 and Leicester in 2016, while he is the oldest ever player to win the Premier League at the age of 43. Age is just a number.
Jamie Carragher – 508 appearances
Surprisingly, Jamie Carragher is the first defender to make it onto the list. Carragher was most certainly a one-club man with the Englishman spending 17 years with Liverpool. Although he did not manage to win the Premier League in that time, Carragher will forever go down as a legend of the game and especially a legend of the club at Liverpool.
Phil Neville – 505 appearances
Our number ten is one of the most decorated players in the list. Phil Neville, brother to Gary, made 505 appearances (105 more than his brother) over his 19-year career, featuring for both Manchester United and Everton. Neville won six Premier League titles with United before moving to Merseyside and he will go down as one of the greatest full-backs the division has ever seen.