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Home Fantasy Cristiano Ronaldo leads the list of footballers with the most international goals

Cristiano Ronaldo leads the list of footballers with the most international goals

Despite a footballer’s success at the club level, players with the most international goals are still revered more by the masses and is considered the ultimate achievement. This is one of the main reasons why Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo is considered superior by many in the perennial Messi vs Ronaldo debate.

Scoring in international football is undoubtedly not as easy as club football. The international players hardly play together and get a chance to gel only before their national team duties like ahead of World Cup qualifiers and other such occasions. Therefore, many believe scoring more goals in international football is a true sign of a footballer’s individual talent.

List of football players with most international goals

1.Cristiano RonaldoPortugal115
2.Ali DaeiIran109
3.Mokhtar DahariMalaysia89
4.Ferenc PuskasHungary84
5.Ali MabkhoutUnited Arab Emirates (UAE)80
6.Sunil ChhetriIndia80
7.Lionel MessiArgentina80
8.Godfrey ChitaluZambia79
9.Hussein SaeedIraq78

Cristiano Ronaldo | 115 goals| 184 appearances| 0.63 goals per match

The undisputed king among goalscorers in international football, Cristiano Ronaldo tops the chart with a whopping 115 goals in his international career so far. The Portuguese international had surpassed Iran’s Ali Daei to become the highest international goalscorer in men’s football on September 2, 2021, when he scored against the Republic of Ireland in a World Cup Group qualifying match.

Ronaldo took his international goal tally to 115 on October 13, 2021, with a hat-trick against Luxembourg in the European World Cup qualifiers 2022. Since making his debut against Kazakhstan in an international friendly, Cristiano Ronaldo has scored 10 hat-tricks for the Portugal national team.

The 36-year-old has 7 goals to his name in the FIFA World Cup finals and 14 at the UEFA Euro finals, which is the most in the tournament. He is also the most capped international player at the UEFA Euros.

Ali Daei| 109 goals| 148 appearances| 0.74 goals per match

Iran’s football legend Ali Daei had scored 109 goals on the international stage between 1993 and 2006, a record that withstood the test of time for a whopping 15 years. His exploits as an international scorer saw him ply his trade for Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich although a large chunk of Ali Daei’s success came for Iran for whom he scored eight hat-tricks.

Sunil Chhetri| 80 goals| 125 appearances| 0.64 goals per match

The captain, leader, legend of the Indian national team, Sunil Chhetri shares his name with some absolute legends of world football, thanks to his stupendous performances on the international stage. With 80 goals in 125 appearances, Indian Super League star Sunil Chhetri is the top scorer for his country and shares the fifth position on the table with Lionel Messi and Zambia’s Godfrey Chitalu – all of whom have 80 international goals. His brilliant feat to level with Lionel Messi had once initiated the debate of Ronaldo vs Sunil Chhetri.

Lionel Messi| 80 goals| 158 appearances| 0.51 goals per season

Cristiano Ronaldo’s archnemesis and arguably the best player in world football, Lionel Messi has a shockingly underwhelming record on the international stage by his standards. Despite having the likes of Angel Di Maria, Sergio Aguero, Lautaro Martinez and more superstars in the Argentina international team, the South-American superstar has seen very little success with the national team. The former Barcelona superstar had an unparalleled 48 hat-tricks for the La Liga side but has managed only seven for Argentina so far.

Most goals in international football by active players (Top 10)

1.Cristiano RonaldoPortugal115
2.Ali MabkhoutUnited Arab Emirates (UAE) 80
3.Sunil ChhetriIndia80
4.Lionel MessisArgentina80
5.Robert LewandowskiPoland74
7.Romelu LukakuBelgium68
8.Luis SuarezUruguay65
9.Zlatan IbrahimovicSweden62
10.Edin DzekoBosnia and Herzegovina60

Robert Lewandowski| 74 goals | 128 appearances| 0.58 goals per game

One of the current superstars in world football, Bayern Munich top-scorer Robert Lewandowski is rapidly amping up the heat for Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. The centre-forward debuted for the national team back in 2008 against San Marino in a World Cup qualifying match. His consistent goals saw him first get the captaincy band in 2013 before he became Poland’s regular captain in 2014. The all-time top scorer for Poland, Robert Lewandowski has recently won the European Golden Shoe in the 2020–21 season.

Neymar| 70 goals| 116 appearances| 0.6 goals per game

One of the most celebrated footballers around the world, Neymar has often looked like the player to topple Cristiano Ronaldo for most international goals scored. Still only 29-year-old, Neymar has 70 goals in 116 games with an impressive 0.6 goals per game for Brazil. Longevity will be an issue for the injury-plagued Paris-Saint Germain winger, but there is no doubt in his goal-scoring ability.

Brazil’s second-highest goalscorer after Pele, Neymar surpassed Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima’s record of 62 international goals on October 14, 2020, with a hat-trick against Peru in a 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification match.

A literature student and ardent sports lover, who was blown away by the fact that SEO helps you achieve perfection in art. Obsessed with SEO, my write-ups are more analytical yet elementary.


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