Premier League Players, Teams With Most Red Cards

Date IconLast Updated: Jan 26th, 2023
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Premier League Players, Teams With Most Red Cards
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Premier League Players, Teams With Most Red Cards

The Premier League is one of the world's toughest and most intense, and officials tend to give players more leeway before penalizing them. 

That said, tempers still flare, giving referees no choice but to act. Following is a look at the players with the most red cards in Premier League history, as well as the league's clubs with the most red cards.

Richard Dunne (8)

Richard Dunne and two other players are tied for the most red cards in the Premier League, with eight. More embarrassing for Dunne, he also holds the record for the most own goals scored in the league, with 10.

The Irishman played for Aston Villa and Manchester City in the Premier League, making 431 appearances in the division. He has a 74 percent tackle rate, as well as eight red cards, 245 fouls and 74 yellow cards.

Duncan Ferguson (8)

Unlike Dunne, a defender whose main job is to tackle, Ferguson was a striker who shouldn't have been sent off so often. 

Ferguson's problem was anger. The Scot was sent off nine times in his career and received a three-month prison sentence following an on-field assault of Raith Rovers' John McStay in 1994. 

Ferguson only played 269 times in the Premier League and also received 40 yellow cards. This means Ferguson was sent off the same number of times as a defensive player, despite playing 162 fewer games.

Patrick Vieira (8)

Patrick Vieira is one of the best Premier League midfielders and captains of all time. The Frenchman is the manager of Premier League side Crystal Palace, but in his days at Arsenal, he was known to bring chaos to the field.

After his battles with Roy Keane, which included a fight in the tunnel before a match in 2005, Vieira joins Ferguson and Dunne with the most red cards in the Premier League with eight. He also received 76 yellow cards in 307 appearances.

Lee Cattermole (7)

While Ferguson and Vieira were sent off a few times for violent conduct, Lee Cattermole got most of his seven red cards by being one of the most aggressive tacklers fans have ever seen.

In 271 appearances, Cattermole racked up an unbelievable 422 fouls and 88 yellow cards. No man in English football history has a worse fouls-to-game ratio.

Vinnie Jones (7)

Some people might know Vinnie Jones from his Hollywood movies, but before he stepped in front of the cameras, he was a ruthless player in the Premier League.

Like Ferguson, Jones didn't play nearly enough games to justify so many red cards, as he was sent off seven times in 184 Premier League appearances. As a midfielder, he only scored 13 goals while racking up 36 yellow cards.

Roy Keane (7)

We’ve already touched on Keane’s antics with his dust-up with Vieira many years ago, and Keane also was sent off seven times in the Premier League. The Manchester United legend is widely regarded as the best captain of all time because of his ferocious nature.

He won the Premier League seven times and made 366 appearances for United, and he infamously got a red card for his horrific tackle on Alfie Haaland that contributed to his playing career ending. 

Alan Smith (7)

Alan Smith spent most of his time in the Premier League with Leeds United, also playing for Newcastle United and Manchester United. 

The Englishman made 285 appearances and got seven red cards. To put his bad tackling in perspective, Smith won 121 games in the Premier League and committed 126 fouls.

Players Who Received Six Red Cards

Only six players have received seven or more cards, while 12 players have received six.

They are Joey Barton, Nicky Butt, Luis Boa Morte, Gareth Barry, John Hartson, Younes Kaboul, Steven Gerrard, Martin Keown, Paul Konchesky, Franck Queudrue, John Terry and Nemanja Vidić.

Players Who Received Five Red Cards

Even more players were sent off five times: Dennis Wise, Jason Wilcox, Frank Sinclair, Jonjo Shelvey, Ryan Shawcross, Scott Parker, Mark Noble, Carlton Palmer, Steve Lomas, Frank Leboeuf, Laurent Koscielny, Tugay Kerimoğlu, Tom Huddlestone, Ugo Ehiogu, Dion Dublin, Wes Brown, Nikos Dabizas, George Boateng, Francis Benali and David Batty.

Which Club Has the Most Red Cards?

As of January 2023, Everton has received the most, with 102. Arsenal is close behind with 100, and no other club has 100 or more.

Most Red Cards in a Premier League Game

The record number of red cards given in a game is three, and that has occurred five times amid the thousands of Premier League games since 1992. The most recent time was 2013, when Southampton and West Bromwich Albion played. 

The other four times were in 2010, between Portsmouth and Sunderland; in 2008, between Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur; in 2007, between Chelsea and Aston Villa; and in 2005, between Newcastle United and Aston Villa.

How Many Red Cards Can One Team Get in a Game?

FIFA does not state how many red cards a team can accrue before the game is abandoned. If a team fields fewer than seven players, the match is brought to a halt, so theoretically, a team cannot receive more than four red cards in a game, or it will be abandoned.