Which footballer scored the first-ever Premier League goal?

The Premier League was founded, as the Football Association (FA) Premier League, on February 20, 1992, and superseded the Football League First Division as the top tier of English football. The first round of fixtures took place on Saturday, August 15, 1992 and the first goalscorer was striker Brian Deane for Sheffield United against Manchester United at Bramall Lane, Sheffield.

After five minutes, Blades’ right-back Carl Bradshaw delivered a long throw-in from the right touchline. Red Devils’ left-back Denis Irwin, at the edge of the six-yard box, was first to the ball, but his defensive header succeeded only in deflecting it across the goal, beyond advancing goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel. Deane stole a march on towering centre-back Gary Pallister – who was 27 at the time but, if you watch a clip, looks remarkably boyish – to score with what was, effectively, a free header and send the Kop Stand into a frenzy.

Deane scored again, from the penalty spot, in the second half to give Sheffield United a 2-1 victory. Decades later, he reflected on the subsequent effects of his landmark moment, saying, ‘While I was playing…it was just another goal. It was only when I finished playing that I really realised what it was.’

For the record, Manchester United also lost their second game of the inaugural Premier League season 3-0 against Everton at Goodison Park four days later. Thereafter, though, they lost just four more games all season and were eventually crowned champions, ten points ahead of Aston Villa. Sheffield United, on the other hand, finished fourteenth, just three points above the relegation zone, but they did reach the semi-finals of the FA Cup and manager Dave Bassett was named ‘Manager of the Year’ by the League Managers Association.

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