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Messi 2nd, Romario 4th… the 5 players with the most career goals in football history

Ultimately, football is about scoring goals and winning games. That’s why it’s the scorers who steal the show, even though it’s a team sport. Even today, strikers and scorers are more revered than others because they are the ones who usually provide the finishing touches and make the difference.

Throughout history, we’ve seen several legendary shooters in the game. But it’s rare to see players maintain their form for nearly two decades and continue to perform at the highest level for such a long time.

Only those who have shown incredible commitment to their craft have been able to sustain such levels throughout their careers. Without further ado, let’s take a look at the five players who have scored the most career goals in football history.

#5 Ferenc Puskas – 729 career goals

Ferenc Puskas was so good that a goalscoring award is named after him. The Puskas Award is given annually by FIFA to the player who scores the most aesthetically significant goal. Puskas is widely regarded as football’s first international superstar.

He was an extremely prolific goalscorer, scoring 84 times in 85 international appearances for Hungary. Puskas also played four times for the Spanish national team at the end of his international career. He distinguished himself in the Hungarian national team which reached the final of the 1954 FIFA World Cup.

Puskas was part of Real Madrid’s dominant team in the late 1950s and 1960s, where he formed a deadly attacking duo with the legendary Alfredo di Stefano. Puskas won five La Liga titles and three European Cups with Real Madrid and was the Spanish league’s top scorer in four different seasons.

He was also awarded the silver Ballon d’Or in 1960 for his exploits.

#4 Romario – 755 career goals

Romario in action for Barcelona against Manchester United

Romario is one of the greatest strikers of all time and it was impossible to take your eyes off him when he was doing his job on the football pitch. Renowned for his precision, Romario demonstrated his genius in the penalty area and revolutionized the role of centre-forward. J

Legendary Johan Cruyff, considered one of football’s greats, coached Romario at FC Barcelona and named him the best player he ever coached. The Brazilian striker was the first player to score at least 100 goals for three different clubs.

He was one of Brazil’s best players at the 1994 FIFA World Cup and was awarded the Ballon d’Or for his exploits. Romario was also named “FIFA World Player of the Year” in 1994.

He scored 755 career goals and only retired in 2009.

#3 Pele – 762 career goals

Pele is one of the greatest players of all time

Pelé is one of the most recognizable names in football. He is one of the greatest footballers of all time and has enjoyed an immensely successful career both at club and international level. In 2000, the International Federation of Football History and Statistics named Pelé as the World Player of the Century.

Pelé took the world by storm as a teenager. He made his debut for Santos aged 15 and made his first appearance for the Brazilian national team aged 16. He is the only player in football history to have won three FIFA World Cups.

Pele still holds the record for the youngest player to score at a World Cup. He scored for Brazil against Wales in the 1958 final aged just 17 years and 249 days. Pelé also holds the record for the youngest player to score a World Cup hat-trick. He achieved this feat against France on June 24, 1958.

#2 Lionel Messi – 764 career goals

Paris Saint-Germain v Kawasaki Frontale - Preseason Friendly

With a record seven Ballon d’Ors, Lionel Messi is arguably the greatest footballer of all time. The Argentine legend dominated the sport for almost two decades and has fascinated us with his goalscoring and playmaking skills.

At the top of his game, Messi has made scoring a breeze. In 2012, Messi scored a total of 91 goals, the most goals scored by a club and national player in a calendar year. The 35-year-old has won the European Golden Shoe a record six times.

Messi is La Liga’s all-time top scorer with 474 goals to his name. He also scored a record 36 hat-tricks in La Liga. The Paris Saint-Germain striker has won ten La Liga and four Champions League titles during his career.

He also led Argentina to victory in the Copa America last summer and was named ‘Most Player of the Tournament’ for his performances.

#1 Cristiano Ronaldo – 813 career goals

Manchester United v Atalanta: Group F - UEFA Champions League

Cristiano Ronaldo is arguably the greatest goalscorer in football history. The Manchester United striker is considered one of the best players to ever wear a pair of cleats and has won five Ballons d’Or.

Ronaldo has won league titles in three different countries and won the UEFA Champions League five times. He holds the record for most appearances (183) and most goals (140) in the Champions League.

Ronaldo is also the player who has scored the most international goals in history, with 117 goals to his name. The 37-year-old has scored an incredible 813 goals in his senior career and is currently well ahead of the rest of his competition.

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