For a striker few people outside Australia have heard of, being a genuine world record for scoring in international football is quite something. But Melbourne’s Victory’s Archie Thompson has just notched his second, 11 years after first entering the record books.
Thompson’s hat-trick for Australia against Guam this week, completed in just on 5 minutes after coming on in the second half, appears to be the fastest ever by a substitute in an officially recognised international football match. The feat came in the Socceroos’ 9-0 win over Guam in the East Asian Cup.
The former Lierse striker’s first world record came on April 11, 2001, in the infamous World Cup qualifier between Australia and American Samoa. Thompson’s individual tally of 13 goals set a new record for the most scored by a striker in a full international as Australia sneaked home 31-0, in itself a record scoreline.
At 34 years old, Thompson’s international days are probably numbered, but he’s within striking distance of become Australia’s highest ever scorer. His tally of 28 is one behind current record holder Damien Mori’s 29.