You can imagine compiling the 100 Greatest Premiership Players is a pretty subjective task. But while you, our faithful readers, were left to squabble over the relative merits of Eric Cantona and Thierry Henry, no player divided opinion at Pies HQ like Brian Deane.
One thing we could agree on is that Brian Deane is the archetypal Premiership striker. A 6ft 3in targetman, Deano was flicking on headers and holding up hopeful long balls while Kevin Davies was still flailing his elbows and goal-hanging in the schoolyard. He scored the first ever Premiership goal when he netted against Manchester United on 15 August 1992.
Cult Hero: Brian Deane continued
The big lump allegedly scored a couple of goals with his feet to go with his collection of headers, but video evidence to back up this claim is limited! His career record of 195 goals in 653 games might not make for pleasant reading, but his 239 appearances and 106 goals for Sheffield United certainly stand up to scrutiny.
Deane made a Â£2.9 million move to Leeds United in 1993 and stayed at Elland Road until 1997. He played out his career with spells of varying lengths at Benfica, Middlesbrough, Leicester City, West Ham, Sunderland and Perth Glory. He eventually hung up his boots at the end of last season after a cameo role in Sheffield United’s promotion.
I would have loved to see Deano scrape into our top 100, but he was pipped by Emile Heskey!