Chelsea's John Terry, right, poking home from close range against Leicester last month, has scored 39 goals in 457 Premier League appearances. Chelsea?s John Terry, right, poking home from close range against Leicester last month, has scored 39 goals in 457 Premier League appearances.

After John Terry moved clear at the head of the list with his header against Liverpool, we run the rule over the top 10 and discover that a powerful left foot can help defenders in the hunt for goals.

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article titled ?The top-scoring Premier League defenders and where they are now? was written by Nick Ames, for theguardian.com on Tuesday 12th May 2015 13.00 UTC

John Terry?s performances for the Premier League champions this season have proved that all of the old faculties are alive and well. If his Indian summer has primarily shone through in the form of defensive nous, one statistic shows that the senses have not been blunted further forward either. The Chelsea centre-back?s goal against Liverpool on Sunday was his 39th in the Premier League ? on his 457th appearance ? and made him the top-scoring defender since the division?s inception in 1992. He heads up a roll call of buccaneering backliners:

Chelsea's John Terr

Chelsea?s John Terry, left, scores his most recent Premier League goal ? against Liverpool at Stamford Bridge last Sunday. Photograph: Matt Dunham/AP

Terry has always shown the timing of a striker from dead-ball situations, sniffing out space and making the most of his aerial prowess. There has rarely been anything fancy about his output, but leave him alone in the penalty area and the outcome is likely to mirror what occurs when a top striker is afforded too much space and time.

David Unsworth Portsmouth

David Unsworth celebrates his goal for Portsmouth against Manchester United in October 2004. Photograph: Chris Ison/PA

The former Everton and West Ham, among others, player was not the quickest of movers but had a hammer of a left foot, a feature that was evident in a series of penalties that left net manufacturers fearing for their products? durability. He could rampage forward from left-back and support the attack in open play, too. Unsworth and Terry are well ahead of the rest of the pack. These days, he heads up Everton?s Under-21 side.

Ian Harte Leeds United

Ian Harte scores from the spot for Leeds United against Charlton Athletic in April 2003. Photograph: Alex Morton/Action Images

Harte, who has just been released by the Championship winners Bournemouth, has missed the chance to add to his tally but, during his best years, his left peg was possibly the best around. Able to thud a ball just like Unsworth, he could conjure a remarkable amount of whip and bend as well, accuracy matching power. Sumptuous free-kicks were his preserve but he did not mind having a go with his right foot either.

Leighton Baines of Everton

Leighton Baines of Everton lifts a free-kick over a Tottenham Hotspur wall to score in October 2010. Photograph: Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Left-footers certainly seem to have more fun, and Baines has at times resembled a playmaker at left-back for Everton. Penalties make up more than half of his output but, like Harte, he can hit a dead-eyed free-kick too. His first career goal, for Wigan in the Championship, set the tone for what has followed and in January he set a record of his own ? becoming the top assist-making defender in the Premier League era.

William Gallas Arsenal

William Gallas leaps highest to score for Arsenal against Chelsea in October 2007. Photograph: Tom Jenkins for the Guardian

Gallas often seemed rather underrated ? the histrionics and controversial moves have tainted some memories ? but his appreciation of space and danger were up there with the very best and saw him contribute particularly well for Chelsea and Arsenal in opposing penalty areas. He became particularly popular at Emirates Stadium when scoring the winner against his old club. He retired, fairly quietly, last year.

Julian Dicks of West Ham

Julian Dicks of West Ham, left, celebrates a successful penalty with Mark Bowen against Tottenham Hotspur in February 1997. Photograph: Stu Forster/Allsport

Another thunderclap of a left boot, and it does not do Dicks a disservice to say he rarely needed to resort to subtlety. It should be pointed out that this figure does not include goals scored before the Premier League era for West Ham, which would add another five to his total. The left-back never missed about from the penalty spot and is now passing on his experience to West Ham Ladies, whom he coaches.

Dan Petrescu Chelsea

Dan Petrescu, pictured in action for Chelsea against Aston Villa, enjoyed freedom in the wing-back role which came into vogue in the 1990s. Photograph: Richard Saker for the Guardian

Petrescu, the first right-back on this list, had rather subtler gifts and was given the stage to deploy them in advanced positions fairly often ? making the most of the wing-back role that came into vogue during the 1990s and having particular joy at Chelsea, where he scored around three-quarters of his league goals. He is now waiting for another chance in management, most recently coaching the Qatari side Al-Arabi.

Matt Elliott Leicester City

Matt Elliott celebrates scoring the winning goal for Leicester City against Tranmere Rovers in the 2000 Worthington Cup final. Photograph: Tom Jenkins for the Guardian

Elliott?s most famous goals came in the 2000 League Cup final, in which he scored twice for Leicester against Tranmere, but his Premier League contributions were a signature dish of Martin O?Neill?s Leicester and few could challenge him when he got a yard on his man at a set piece. Elliott has had several coaching roles since retiring and works with Leicester?s academy.

Sami Hyypia Liverpool

Sami Hyypia, second left, scores for Liverpool in the Champions League quarter-final against Bayer Leverkusen in April 2002. Photograph: Darren Walsh/Action Images

The Finn?s goals were spread out fairly evenly over 10 seasons at Liverpool ? he never failed to score in a league season but never managed more than four in a campaign ? and he was another whose presence in the opposition box at corners and free-kicks frequently wreaked mayhem. He is searching for managerial work after leaving Brighton earlier in the season.

Everton Joleon Lescott

Everton?s Joleon Lescott, left, looks on as his looping header beats Manchester City?s Joe Hart in February 2008. Photograph: Darren Staples/Reuters

You have to cast your mind back a few years, but time was when Lescott was a reasonably regular name on the scoresheet. His most prolific year was 2007-08, when he scored eight times in the league for Everton. That output has dropped off in his time at Manchester City and now West Bromwich Albion, although he hasn?t completely lost the knack of being in the right place at the right time.

guardian.co.uk ? Guardian News & Media Limited 2010

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