Football is the most beloved and practiced sport in the world and the best football players have become true legends, not only in sports history but also in mass culture. Although all the players running on the pitch are equally important during the matchbook,the most of the glory is paid to the strikers, able to change the fortunes of a game with a single play, a winning paw, that unique and exclusive sense of goal, able inflaming the crowds’ heart.
So, who are the most prolific football players in history? Some of them are real pillars of football, while others are almost unknown, despite having scored an impressive number of goals. Let’s find out together which players have scored the most in their careers.
Messi, Ronaldo and Ibrahimovic:
Let’s start with three players who are still playing on the football pitch. Beyond any shadow of a doubt, the most obvious (and right) answer includes Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi; it is a fact that they are two of the greatest of all times (GOAT). When they are in the penalty area, you can bet on them scoring.
Some people do not know, however, that Zlatan Ibrahimovic is one of the most prolific footballers of all time, having scored 546 goals; The Swedish champion, however, not only is in a great shape after his debut with A.C. Milan, but having played almost always in top clubs (Inter, Juventus, Milan, Barcelona, PSG, Manchester United, to mention a few) is always been decisive, proving to be pivotal even for the Swedish national team.
The first football player appearing in this special ranking, is Josef Bican, Austrian footballer. The Slavia Prague star, who was in the business between 1928 and 1955,have scored 805 goals in official FIFA matches and, by counting friendlies, has scored 1468 times. By comparison, a “normal” striker, averaging 35 goals per season, would take 42 years of constant activity and yet at very high levels to match his record.
He is the only player ever to have played and scored with three different national teams (Austria, Czechoslovakia and Bohemia/Moravia).
Romario and Pele, true brazilian legends
In second place we can find Romario, world champion with Brazil in the 1994 U.S. World Cup who scored 772 goals in 994 matches (an average of 0.78 each match). The carioca striker, who exploded in Vasco da Gama and established himself in Europe wearing the jerseys of PSV and Barcelona, can be considered a true globetrotter, having played in the major leagues of all continents, except for Africa. It was this long career, combined with his scoring skills, that allowed him to score a consistent bunch of goals.
Despite having played for most of his career at Santos in Brazil (excluding his brief stint at the NY Cosmos), Pele have scored 586 goals with his club and 92 during official matches with the Brazilian national team. In total, “O Rei” scored 767 goals in 831 appearances on the pitch.