Scoring a goal in a game is to be expected while grabbing a couple is not that uncommon; but to bag three guarantees lifetime membership of one of the most prestigious clubs in football.
All hat-tricks are great (well, almost all of them) but some are more notable than others, so we’ve taken a look back at some of the most talked-about trebles ever scored and what made them so special.
Proof if you ever needed it that three is, indeed, the magic number…
Robbie Fowler: Liverpool 3-0 Arsenal, August, 1994
On August 28, 1994, Robbie Fowler wrote his name into Liverpool folklore by putting the ball past England ‘keeper David Seaman three times in just 4 minutes and 33 seconds – a then Premier League record.
A Martin Keown error led to Fowler’s first goal as his clearance fell to the youngster who fired the ball home to give Liverpool the lead with 26 minutes on the clock and just two minutes later he grabbed his second as Steve McManaman threaded a perfect through-ball to Fowler who had eluded his marker and slid the ball past the Arsenal ‘keeper.
His third was a classic Fowler strike as, having been put clear via a clever John Barnes chip, the academy graduate saw his initial shot saved by Seaman but was first to the rebound before rounding the England number one, tiptoeing along the goal line and lashing the ball into the net as Anfield erupted.
Stan Mortensen: Blackpool 4-3 Bolton, May, 1953
Stan Mortensen scored 197 goals during 14 years at Blackpool, but he will be best remembered for the three that he scored in the 1953 FA Cup final at Wembley against Bolton Wanderers.
Named the Stanley Matthews Final, Mortensen’s impact on the game does not deserve to take a backseat to the great winger as he helped his side claw back a 3-1 deficit with just seven minutes remaining.
His hat-trick came just three minutes from time to equalise at 3-3, before Bill Perry won it in stoppage time and Mortensen remians the only player to score a three goals in the FA Cup Final.
Geoff Hurst: England 4-2 West Germany, July, 1966
Geoff Hurst’s Wembley treble is still remembered as the greatest moment in the history of the English game as Alf Ramsay’s side beat West Germany to become world Champions back in 1966.
The first was a glancing header to equalise at 1-1 and was classic Hurst, who scored 242 goals in 500 games for West Ham while the second, to put England up 3-2 in extra time, has been debated furiously to this day with the Germans claiming the ball never fully crossed the line.
There were no doubts about the third though as a left-footed drive from just inside the area handed England victory, scenes which, over half a century later have yet to be replicated.
Dennis Bergkamp Leicester City 3-3 Arsenal, August, 1997
Dennis Bergkamp’s display at Filbert Street was a warning to the rest of the division about the powerhouse he was to help Arsenal become as he scored all three in a thrilling 3-3 draw.
The Dutchman opened the scoring by controlling a short corner to the edge of the box before looking effortless as he picked out the far top corner with a looping shot.
While his second had a touch of fortune with a ricochet bouncing over Kasey Keller his third was classic Bergkamp as he controlled a long ball into the box with mesmerising skill before curling the ball into the far corner of the net to make it 3-2, only for the Foxes to take the shine off the achievement with a last-minute equaliser.
Clive Mendonca: Charlton 4-4 Sunderland, May, 1998
Clive Mendonca produced arguably the greatest Play-Off Final performance ever seen in the most dramatic and tense second-tier showdown to date as Charlton faced Sunderland for a place in the Premier League.
In a game that tipped and turned in all directions and eventually saw Michael Gray miss the deciding penalty after a 4-4 draw, Mendonca helped get Charlton to the promised land with three superb finishes.
However, his eight goals the next season couldn’t keep Charlton up, however, as the Addicks were relegated by five points.
Leave a comment
Follow Matthewjcrist on Twitter