Wayne Rooney will become just the ninth England player to pass 100 caps when the captain runs out against Slovenia this Saturday.
Bobby Charlton, Bobby Moore and David Beckham have been here before him, in a history that goes all the way back to 50s Wolves and England legend Billy Wright.
The black-and-white newsreels of that generation are a world away from global football’s HD TV hype machine, which makes it all the more fun to delve back into the archives to see England’s centurions in action.
Here are the eight players that Rooney will take his place alongside this weekend. Who knows, he may even surpass all of them. After all, Beckham’s outfield record is just 15 caps away. If Rooney’s legs hold, even goalkeeper Peter Shilton’s all-time record is within his grasp…
1. Billy Wright: 105 caps (played 1946-1959)
A time of bovril and unfettered ball skills (if you can skip through the mud of course), Billy Wright became the first ever international to reach the 100-cap milestone when England played Scotland in 1959.
2. Bobby Charlton: 106 (1958-1970)
The master, held in the highest esteem thanks to his World Cup-winning performance on the pitch and his unfussy demeanour off it. This is a special club Rooney’s entering into.
The only other World Cup winner on this list. Forget almost 50 years of hurt: just let this vintage colour footage take you back to a happier time.
4. Peter Shilton: 125 (1970-1990)
Peter Shilton is England’s highest ever capped player, but even that doesn’t excuse this disturbing BBC interview from 1988, which starts with a pap-shot of the big man sunbathing. What was Des thinking?
5. David Beckham: 115 (1996-2009)
Proof that David Beckham is a much better performer when he keeps his kit on. THAT Greece free kick will live on long after his tighty whities have worn away…
6. Steven Gerrard: 114 (2000-2014)
Gerrard’s career ended in bittersweet fashion in Brazil, but that’s not to say he hasn’t been a dedicated servant of England. Enjoy the boy wonder’s best bits here.
7. Ashley Cole: 107 (2001-2014)
The boom in the global game means that this list is mainly made up of modern players, and at first glance Cole is a surprising name on the roster of England legends. Just remember, though, this was arguably the best full back in world football. Time to forget the off-field antics.
8. Frank Lampard: 106 (1999-2014)
The latest member of the 100 club, Lampard has had a new lease of life with Manchester City. Perhaps he called time on his England career too soon?
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