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The target man's international strikes, rarer than hen's teeth....

By Matt Monaghan

Collectors items in football didn't come much rarer than seeing an Emile Heskey goal for England in the flesh.

Throughout an 11-year international career that came to an end on Thursday, the Aston Villa striker scored just seven goals in 62 appearances. This record ensured the big centre forward wasn't just a target for his team-mates, but for the critics' barbs as they slaughtered him for his meagre return.

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The highlight of the 32-year-old's Three Lions spell undoubtedly came when he found the back of the net in the famous thumping of Germany in 2001. Three Lions supporters continued to revel in this result - and goalscorer - with the chant echoed up to this summer's World Cup of "5-1 and even Heskey scored."

Goal.com UK took time time out to celebrate every strike from the terrace's favourite fall-guy...

1.

Date: 3/6/00

Opposition: Malta

Competition: Friendly

Final score: 2-1

Heskey's first international goal came against the Mediterranean minnows after Steve McManaman's run found Nick Barmby in space. The then Everton player evaded one challenge to set up the striker with the easiest of tap-ins.


Sven's start
| Heskey struck on Swede's debut

2.

Date: 28/2/01

Opposition: Spain

Competition: Friendly

Final score: 3-0

In the days before Spain dominated international football, Heskey found the back of the net in Sven-Goran Eriksson's first game in charge of England. Big centre back Ugo Ehiogu caused confusion from a Frank Lampard corner, with Heskey then on hand to scramble the ball home.

3.

Date: 1/9/01

Opposition: Germany

Competition: World Cup 2002 qualifying

Final score: 5-1

Towards the end of one of England's finest hours, Heskey was on hand to calmly slide home a Paul Scholes pass. Queue trademark record-spinning celebration (and a bit of putting for good measure) and the birth of a much loved England fans' chant "5-1 - and even Heskey scored", sung to the tune of "Go West".


Japan joy | Heskey's sole World Cup goal

4.

Date: 15/6/02

Opposition: Denmark

Competition: World Cup 2002

Final score: 3-0

After coming under criticism for yet another long scoreless streak, Heskey latched onto a raking David Beckham pass to put his side into a commanding lead. The strike helped England to the quarter-final stage where they fell to Brazil.

5.

Date: 22/5/03

Opposition: South Africa

Competition: Friendly

Final score: 2-1

Heskey was handed the winning goal in this friendly contest when goalkeeper Brian Baloyi spilled a Frank Lampard shot into his path. The result was marred by a broken wrist for golden boy Beckham.


Home comforts | Heskey's only strike at Wembley

6.

Date: 28/3/09

Opposition: Slovakia

Competition: Friendly

Final score: 4-0

A smart drag-back from Steven Gerrard Gerrard's bamboozled his marker and his near-post cross was forced home by Heskey on the goal-line. The strike was typically cumbersome.

7.

Date: 6/6/09

Opposition: Kazakhstan

Competition: World Cup 2010 qualifying

Final score: 4-0

An ambitious long-range pass from Steven Gerrard caught Kazakhstan goalkeeper Alexandr Mokin out of position. His fumbled attempt at a catch fell to Heskey who did the business to score what would be his final international goal.

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