Tottenham Hotspur has established itself as a major force in English football in recent decades. Spurs have had some top-class forwards down the years, both in the past and present. Here are Tottenham’s top-ten record goalscorers:
Jimmy Greaves (266 goals in 379 appearances)
Greaves is not just a Tottenham legend but an English football legend. The forward started his playing career with Spurs’ London rivals Chelsea before a short-lived stint in Italian football with Milan.
However, Greaves is arguably best remembered for his nine-year stint in north London, where he established himself as one of the best forwards in the world game.
His goals helped Spurs win the FA Cup in 1962 and 1967 and the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1963. Unfortunately for Greaves, his only domestic title came playing for Milan when he helped the Rossoneri to the Scudetto in 1962 in his solitary season in Italy.
Not only is Greaves Spurs’ record all-time goalscorer, but also the record-ever goalscorer in the history of the English top-flight, scoring 357 goals in 516.
At international level, the forward represented England on 57 occasions, scoring 44 goals. Only four players have scored more goals for the Three Lions. Greaves played at the World Cup in 1962 and 1966, helping England to win the latter on home soil.
Harry Kane (265 goals in 412 appearances)
The forward made his Tottenham debut in 2010 and went on to become one of the most prolific scorers the English game has ever seen. The England international has scored 265 goals in 412 appearances. He is considered by many as one of the best forward players the English game has ever produced.
Unfortunately for Kane, despite his prolific scoring of goals, Tottenham has yet to win silverware during his career with the north London outfit. The closest that Spurs have come during Kane’s career was in season 2018/19 when they finished as Champions League runners-up to Liverpool after a 2-0 final defeat.
Individually, the forward has been highly successful. Among the awards, Kane has won is the Premier League Golden Boot in 2016, 2017 and 2021, while also winning the Tottenham Player of the Year award in 2015 and 2021.
Kane is England’s joint record goalscorer alongside Wayne Rooney, having scored 48 goals for the Three Lions.
Bobby Smith (208 goals in 317 appearances)
Like Jimmy Greaves, Smith started his career at London rivals Chelsea, where he spent four and a half years before joining Spurs in December 1955 for a fee of £18,000. The forward turned out to be a bargain.
Smith played a key role in a Billy Nicholson-managed Spurs team winning the double of the First Division title and FA Cup in season 1960/61. The Yorkshire-born star scored 33 goals in 43 appearances in the successful campaign, including scoring in the semi-final and final of the FA Cup.
The silverware didn’t stop there for Smith and his team, though, as Spurs went on to retain the FA Cup in 1962, with Smith scoring in the final, and the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup in 1963.
Smith also made 15 appearances for England from 1960-1963, scoring an impressive 13 times for his national team.
Martin Chivers (174 goals in 367 appearances)
Nicknamed ‘Big Chiv’, Chivers is considered one of the all-time greats at Tottenham. The forward started his career with Southampton before switching to North London in 1968, costing Spurs £125,000, which was an English record at the time.
He scored on his debut for Spurs against Sheffield Wednesday. However, the great Greaves blocked his path to regular first-team football. When Greaves joined West Ham in 1970, Chivers truly started to flourish at the north London club.
His pace and power made him a star for Tottenham at the start of the 1970s, a period that saw Tottenham win the League Cup in 1971 and 1973. Chivers scored a brace in the 1971 final, a 2-0 win over Aston Villa.
Wedged in between the two League Cup triumphs was a UEFA Cup title in 1972. Once again, Chivers played a crucial role, scoring a brace in a 2-1 win over Wolves in the final’s first leg (see above). The aggregate saw Spurs claim a 3-2 victory over their compatriots.
Cliff Jones (154 goals in 378 appearances)
The Welsh winger started his career at his hometown club Swansea Town (now Swansea City), where he was prolific. His performances and goalscoring exploits were enough to persuade Tottenham to shell out a then-record £58,000 in February 1958.
Jones struggled to settle in north London initially, a situation that was not helped by his teammate Peter Baker breaking his leg in pre-season training in the summer of 1958.
However, Jones started to thrive in the 1959/60 season, producing a respectable tally of 25 goals in all competitions. Like Bobby Smith, the winger played a crucial role in Tottenham’s success during Bill Nicholson’s golden years as boss.
Jones scored 19 goals in Spurs’ double-winning campaign in season 1960/61. He also played a part in the north London club’s 1962 final triumph and their European Cup Winners’ Cup win in 1963. The Welshman picked up a winner’s medal in the FA Cup of 1967 but didn’t get on the pitch in the final.
Jermain Defoe (143 goals in 363 appearances)
The diminutive forward was prolific for Spurs in three separate spells, scoring 143 goals. Defoe’s most prolific period for the north London club came in his second stint from 2009-2014. The former England international was part of the Tottenham team that won the League Cup in season 2007/08.
Defoe’s most prolific campaign at Spurs was in season 2009/10 when he scored 24 goals in all competitions. The forward also won the Tottenham Hotspur Player of the Year in 2004 after he scored 22 goals.
George Hunt (138 goals in 198 appearances)
After starting his career with Chesterfield, Hunt joined Tottenham in 1930 for a fee of £1,500. The centre-forward spent seven years with the north London club, spending most of that spell scoring goals at a good rate.
From seasons 1931-1934, Hunt was Spurs’ top goalscorer every season. In fact, in season 1932/33, the forward’s 32 league goals help Tottenham to return to the First Division.
Hunt’s time at Tottenham was fruitless when it came to silverware. The only silverware the forward won during his career was the First Division title during a stint with Spurs’ arch-rivals Arsenal in season 1937/38.
Son Heung-min (137 goals in 347 appearances)
The South Korean international has become something of a national hero in his homeland since his switch to Tottenham from Hamburg in 2015. Since his move to the English capital, Son has become a key player, developing an excellent understanding with talisman Kane in Tottenham’s attack.
Son was part of the Spurs’ team that were Champions League runners-up in season 2018/29 and League Cup runners-up in season 2020/21.
On an individual basis, the South Korean international won the Premier League Golden Boot in 2021/22. He was also selected in the Premier League Team of the Year in season 2020/21.
Len Duquemin (134 goals in 307 appearances)
The Guernsey-born star spent 11 years with Tottenham, having made just one appearance for his first club Colchester. Duquemin was part of the Spurs’ team that won the Second Division title in season 1949–50. He also helped his team to win the First Division title in the following campaign.
Known as ‘Reliable Len’, the forward was a hard-working player who played under Sir Alf Ramsey and the legendary Spurs boss Bill Nicholson during his playing career.
Alan Gilzean (133 goals in 439 appearances)
The Scot is still a hero at the north London club. Gilzean was a lethal finisher at Dundee before moving to Tottenham in December 1964 for £72,500.
From 1964 until 1974, Gilzean became a star for Spurs. At the peak of his Spurs career, he formed an excellent partnership with the great Greaves. He adapted his game from a lethal goalscorer to more of a creative forward during his time with Spurs.
Gilzean enjoyed a silverware trophy-laden career with the club, winning the FA Cup in 1967 while also winning the League Cup in 1971 and 1973. The forward also won the UEFA Cup in 1972.