Player profile

Roger Hunt

Roger Hunt

Birthdate: 20 July 1938
Birthplace: Golborne, England
Other clubs: Stockton Heath (1954), Bury (1955), Stockton Heath (2 / 1955-57), Devizes Town (1957-58), Stockton Heath (3 / 1958), Bolton Wanderers (1969-72), Hellenic (loan 1971)
Bought from: Stockton Heath (3)
Signed for LFC: 29.07.1958
International debut: 04.04.1962 vs. Austria
International caps: 34/18 - 15.01.1969
Liverpool debut: 09.09.1959
Last appearance: 13.12.1969
Debut goal: 09.09.1959
Last goal: 26.11.1969
Contract expiry: 16.12.1969
Win ratio: 52.24% W:257 D:115 L:120
Games/goals ratio: 1.73
Honours: League Championship 1963/64, 1965/66; Second Division 1961/62; FA Cup 1965
LFC league games/goals: 404 / 244
Total LFC games/goals: 492 / 285

Player profile

Roger Hunt signed for Liverpool after attracting scout Bill Jones' attention playing for Stockton Heath in the Mid-Cheshire league. Hunt had only played six reserve matches in which he scored eight goals before making his Reds' debut against Scunthorpe at Anfield in the absence of Billy Liddell on 9 September 1959. He played like a seasoned pro and fondly remembers this occasion as he told LFC.tv in February 2009: "The game was a lot quicker than what I was used to. We were one-nil up when we got a free-kick around the hour mark. Jimmy Melia spotted me and played a short pass into my stride. I looked up and hit it instinctively. I knew it was in as soon as I struck it and I can't describe how good it felt to see it smash in off the crossbar." Hunt was praised by the media and the News Chronicle and Daily Dispatch said: "They do find 'em at Golborne: Peter Kane, world fly-weight champion, Bert Llewellyn, goal-scoring Crewe player... and now Roger Hunt, 21, who had a dream debut for Liverpool. Hunt, stand-in for Billy Liddell, may not be an orthodox centre-forward, but by lying deep he emphasised his footballing ability, creative artistry and control." Hunt immediately showed all his greatest strengths. He was quick, strong, skilful and possessed a rocket of a shot. More importantly he never gave up and worked his socks off for the team. "I knew perfectly well that I wasn't an out-and-out natural, the sort who can make a ball talk so it was down to me to compensate for it in other ways," Hunt said. "I made up my mind that if I didn't succeed at Anfield it wouldn't be for the lack of determination. From the first day I threw myself into training, ran and tackled for everything and practised my ball skills at every opportunity."

Hunt joined a club that had been agonisingly close to gaining promotion to the top division again, twice finishing third and twice fourth in the previous four seasons. There would be disappointment again in 1959/60 with another third place in Shankly's first season as manager. Hunt's partnership with former Everton star Dave Hickson worked well but when Hickson departed and Ian St John arrived in the 1961/62 promotion season Hunt started to fire on all cylinders. He scored no less than 41 goals in 41 League matches, including five hat-tricks. Hunt made his England debut that spring and went to the World Cup in 1962, but did not play a single match. The next few years were golden ones for Liverpool and for Hunt. He scored 129 times in 160 games during the next four seasons, a period in which the club twice won the League Championship and had good cup runs at home and in Europe. His greatest personal achievement at club level was certainly the FA Cup Final of 1965 against Leeds, a competition Liverpool had never won before. Hunt's stooping header broke the deadlock early in extra-time before St John scored the winner. The World Cup was held on English soil in 1966 and Hunt played in all six games, scoring three goals as England lifted the game's biggest prize. Often criticised by the Southern press that preferred the more flamboyant Jimmy Greaves, Hunt's international record speaks for itself - he was on the losing side only twice in 34 internationals. Bobby Moore knew all about his qualities: "Roger Hunt is a player's player. He is possibly appreciated more by those who play with him and against him than by those who watch him."

Hunt was Liverpool's top goalscorer eight years in a row from 1962-1969 and on 11 November 1967 he broke Gordon Hodgson's goalscoring record at the club by netting his 242nd goal against Manchester United. Despite his scoring prowess he could not please all people as Tommy Smith remembers: "We used to call him 'Over-the-bar Hunt'. Everyone used to get mail, praising you, calling you names or simply asking for an autograph. Roger used to get a letter on a regular basis from a lad, who clearly didn't like him. It always used to start. 'Dear Over-the-bar-Hunt. I see you missed another couple of sitters on Saturday.'" In March 1969 the normally mild-mannered Hunt caused a sensation when he was substituted in a cup replay at Anfield against Leicester by taking his shirt off and angrily throwing it in the direction of the dug-out. Although he started 1969/70 still as first choice, he lost his place to Phil Boersma in the autumn. There would be one final day to remember in front of the supporters who had always given him such great encouragement. With time running out and a 1-1 scoreline against Southampton, Shankly brought on Hunt to replace Alec Lindsay and he responded by scoring twice in two minutes! Those were his last League goals for Liverpool and seven weeks later he signed for Bolton Wanderers. Ian Rush broke Hunt's overall scoring record for Liverpool on 18 October 1992 but Hunt's League tally of 245 goals is still a club record. Hunt was awarded an MBE in 2000. Whether he will be knighted one day remains to be seen but he has anyway been called "Sir Roger" by the Kop for a quarter of a century.

Appearances per season

Please note

Liverpool's goal against Tottenham on 12 March 1966 has erroneously been credited to Roger Hunt for years by statisticians, but it is clearly an own goal by Ted Clayton. That reduces Hunt's official LFC total to 285 goals.

Season League FA LC Europe Other Total
Totals 404 44 10 31 3 492
1959-1960 36 2 0 0 0 38
1960-1961 32 1 3 0 0 36
1961-1962 41 5 0 0 0 46
1962-1963 42 6 0 0 0 48
1963-1964 41 5 0 0 0 46
1964-1965 40 8 0 9 1 58
1965-1966 37 1 0 7 1 46
1966-1967 39 3 0 5 1 48
1967-1968 40 9 2 6 0 57
1968-1969 38 4 3 2 0 47
1969-1970 18 0 2 2 0 22

A more detailed look at the player's appearances

Total Opponent
19 WBA
18 Arsenal
18 Stoke City
18 Manchester United
17 West Ham United
17 Leicester City
17 Tottenham
16 Everton
16 Chelsea
16 Sunderland
16 Sheffield United
15 Burnley
15 Sheffield Wednesday
14 Nottingham Forest
14 Leeds United
12 Southampton
11 Manchester City
11 Aston Villa
10 Newcastle United
10 Fulham
10 Wolves
10 Blackpool
8 Blackburn Rovers
8 Leyton Orient
8 Ipswich Town
7 Derby
7 Swansea City
7 Bolton Wanderers
6 Birmingham City
6 Plymouth Argyle
6 Bristol Rovers
6 Charlton Athletic
6 Rotherham United
5 Preston North End
5 Huddersfield Town
5 Brighton & Hove Albion
5 Scunthorpe United
5 Middlesbrough
4 Walsall
4 Luton Town
4 Norwich City
3 Coventry City
3 Lincoln City
3 Portsmouth
3 Cologne
3 Petrolul Ploiesti
3 Watford
2 Malmo
2 Ajax
2 TSV Munich
2 Ferencvaros
2 Bournemouth
2 QPR
2 Athletic Bilbao
2 Standard Liege
2 Honved
2 Inter Milan
2 Juventus
2 Port Vale
2 Anderlecht
2 KR Reykjavík
2 Stockport County
2 Bury
1 Oldham Athletic
1 Cardiff City
1 Hull City
1 Northampton Town
1 Wrexham
1 Doncaster Rovers
1 Crystal Palace
1 Dundalk
1 Vitoria Setubal
1 Borussia Dortmund
Total Started/substitutions
487 Started
1 On the bench
5 Substitute
4 Substituted
Total Competition
404 League
44 FA Cup
14 European Cup
10 League Cup
10 European Fairs Cup
7 European Cup Winners Cup
3 Charity Shield

Goals per season

Please note

Liverpool's goal against Tottenham on 12 March 1966 has erroneously been credited to Roger Hunt for years by statisticians, but it is clearly an own goal by Ted Clayton. That reduces Hunt's official LFC total to 285 goals.

Season League FA LC Europe Other Total
Totals 244 18 5 17 1 285
1959-1960 21 2 0 0 0 23
1960-1961 15 1 3 0 0 19
1961-1962 41 1 0 0 0 42
1962-1963 24 2 0 0 0 26
1963-1964 31 2 0 0 0 33
1964-1965 25 5 0 7 0 37
1965-1966 29 1 0 2 0 32
1966-1967 14 1 0 3 1 19
1967-1968 25 2 0 3 0 30
1968-1969 13 1 2 1 0 17
1969-1970 6 0 0 1 0 7

A more detailed look at the player's goalscoring

Total Started/substitutions
282 Started
3 Substitute
Total Competition
244 League
18 FA Cup
10 European Cup
5 League Cup
5 European Fairs Cup
2 European Cup Winners Cup
1 Charity Shield
Total Goal minute period
22 1-15 minutes
34 16-30 minutes
44 31-45 minutes
66 61-75 minutes
59 76-90 minutes
1 91-120 minutes
Total Open play/Penalty
284 Open play
1 Penalty

Milestone Appearances

# Date Against Stadium Competition
1 09.09.1959 Scunthorpe United Anfield League
50 22.10.1960 Huddersfield Town Leeds Road League
100 20.01.1962 Scunthorpe United Old Show Gr. League
150 05.03.1963 Ipswich Town Portman Road League
200 19.02.1964 Aston Villa Villa Park League
250 10.02.1965 Cologne Mungersdorf Stadion Europe
300 27.12.1965 Leeds United Anfield League
350 18.01.1967 Leicester City Filbert Street League
400 27.01.1968 Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic Dean Court FA Cup
450 03.12.1968 Southampton Anfield League

Milestone Goals

# Minute Date Against Stadium Competition
1 64 09.09.1959 Scunthorpe United Anfield League
50 63 02.09.1961 Norwich City Carrow Road League
100 18 09.01.1963 Wrexham Racecourse Gro. FA Cup
150 56 26.09.1964 Aston Villa Anfield League
200 51 15.12.1965 Standard Liege Stade de Sclessin Europe
250 79 02.03.1968 Wolves Molineux League

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Related Quotes

"We knew that all other things being equal, like skill, tactics and run of the ball, it was fitness that would count in the end. So we kept at 100% at all times, and it paid us. We have found that there is more satisfaction in a good win than there is in a pint or a cigarette packet."

Roger Hunt

"Roger Hunt is a player's player. He is possibly appreciated more by those who play with him and against him than by those who watch him."

Sir Bobby Moore on Roger Hunt

People talk about Keegan and Toshack or Rush and Dalglish when they are asked about great Liverpool striking duos, but I talk about Hunt and St John. When I pick my greatest ever Liverpool team then Roger Hunt is the first forward I put in.

We used to call him 'Over-the-bar Hunt'. Everyone used to get mail, praising you, calling you names or simply asking for an autograph. Roger used to get a letter on a regular basis from a lad, who clearly didn't like him. It always used to start. 'Dear Over-the-bar-Hunt. I see you missed another couple of sitters on Saturday.'

Tommy Smith on Roger Hunt

"I knew perfectly well that I wasn't an out-and-out natural, the sort who can make a ball talk so it was down to me to compensate for it in other ways. I made up my mind that if I didn't succeed at Anfield the it wouldn't be for the lack of determination. From the first day I threw myself into training, ran and tackled for everything and practised my ball skills at every opportunity."

Roger Hunt on his first year at Liverpool

"Torres is the nearest thing I have ever seen to Roger Hunt. When Roger was around, if there was a chance inside the 18 yard box then the ball was in the back of the net - there was no question about that.

He got into positions that no-one else would ever dream of getting into and that's the same with Torres. You don't think he has any chance of doing anything because he has two men around him, but then he drops his shoulder, does a nutmeg and the ball is in the net. That's exactly what Roger used to do and he was a World Cup winner.

Tommy Smith compares Fernando Torres to Roger Hunt in June 2008

Other Clubs

Club Season Club rank League apps League goals Total apps Total goals
Stockton Heath 1954 Mid-Cheshire League N/A N/A N/A N/A
Bury 1955 Third Division North 0 0 0 0
Stockton Heath 1955-1957 Mid-Cheshire League 0 0 0 0
Stockton Heath 1955-1957 Mid-Cheshire League N/A N/A N/A N/A
Devizes Town 1957-1958 Western League N/A N/A N/A N/A
Bolton Wanderers 1969-1970 England Second Division 17 5 19 5
Bolton Wanderers 1970-1971 England Second Division 24 8 26 8
Hellenic 1971 South Africa 6 4 6 4
Bolton Wanderers 1971-1972 England Third Division 35 11 40 12
Total 82 28 91 29
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