Top All Time Goal Scorers from Europe in International Play History
With Wayne Rooney scoring his English record-setting 50th international goal on September 8 in a game against Switzerland, a conversation has been sparked throughout the soccer playing world. The questions on everyone’s mind are, “Who are the greatest All Time Goal Scorers in international play and where would Rooney be on that list?”
At the age of 29, it is important to remember Rooney has a lot international play left in his body. Many experts feel he has at least good years left, barring injury, and Rooney himself has stated he would like to continue plying with The Three Lions for as long as his body will cooperate and let him perform at a high level.
With that in mind, it would be a worthwhile exercise to look at the current list of top goal scorers in international play history. With all due respect for international greats like Ali Daei (Iran – ranked No. 1 with 109 goals), Kunishige Kamamoto (Japan – No. 3 with 80 goals) and Pele (Brazil – No. 5 with 77 goals), this list will be restricted to players from Europe and their ranking will be reflected as such. Note: The years listed will reflect years of international play only.
All Time Goal Scorers from Europe
No. 1 – Ferenc Puskás (84 goals with Hungary & Spain, 1943-1966) – The ‘Galloping Major’ made 85 appearances for Hungary before leaving because of the Hungarian revolution and renouncing his Hungarian citizenship to become a Spanish citizen. If not for the 5-year gap in his international career while changing countries, his goal total would surely be higher. He is one of the All Time Goal Scorers.
No. 2 – Sándor Kocsis (75 goals with Hungary, 1948-1956) – While he also moved to Spain after the Hungarian, he remained a Hungarian citizen and never played for Spain at the international level. Had a record setting two “hat tricks” in 1954 World Cup.
No. 3 – Miroslav Klose (71 goals with Germany, 2001-2014) – Known as one of the game’s best poachers, Klose surprised a few people by becoming Germany’s top scorer and leading the team to a 2014 FIFA World Cup title before retiring.
No. 4 – Gerd Müller (68 goals with West Germany, 1966-1974) – Built more like an American linebacker in the NFL, he used great instincts and crafty positioning to outwit opponents. Led West Germany to the 1974 World Cup title.
No. 5 – Robbie Keane (67 goals with Republic of Ireland, 1998-) – First player from the U.K. to score 50 goals and break Sir Bobby Charlton’s record for the British Isles.
No. 6 – Imre Schlosser (59 goals with Hungary, 1906-1927) – During his career with the Hungarian national team, they won an amazing 70% of the team’s games.
No. 7 – David Villa (59 goals with Spain, 2005-2014) – Before retiring after a disappointing 2014 World Cup for favored Spain, Villa scored a goal in his last game.
No. 8 – Zlatan Ibrahimović (57 goals with Sweden, 2001-) – He is considered by far Sweden’s greatest soccer player with eight Swedish “Player of the Year” awards already to his credit.
No. 9 – Jan Koller (55 goals with Czech Republic, 1999-2009) – Unlike most of the players on this list, he didn’t make his international debut until the age of 25.
No. 10 – Joachim Streich (55 goals with East Germany, 1969-1984) – Helped East Germany capture the Bronze Medal at the tragic 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Germany.
No. 11 – Cristiano Ronaldo (55 goals with Portugal, 2003-) – His accomplishment has taken 122 caps, making him the leader among top players for matches played.
This article was written by sports analyst and enthusiast Tony Samboras. As a fan and writer of all things football Tony loves compiling these lists. His knowledge and experience has led him develop sports betting systems for www.simplythebetsus.com