Top five fastest players to reach 40 Champions League goals
Some of the prolific goal-scorers in UEFA Champions League history
The UEFA Champions League is regarded as one of the biggest football club competitions in the world due to the prestige it commands. The tournament is UEFA’s top-tier club competition, followed by the Europa League and the UEFA Conference League. It is also usually played by the top clubs in Europe. Scoring goals season after season in the Champions League is no easy feat. The strikers are the players who end up scoring most of the goals in the competition and thus end up taking away most of the glory.
Since the competition’s inception, a plethora of strikers have left their mark. The current crop of players is making a mockery of Champions League goalscoring records. Without further ado, let’s take a look at the top five quickest players to reach forty Champions League goals:
5. Robert Lewandowski – 61
One of the finest strikers of the 21st century, A well-rounded forward, he is said to possess almost all the necessary qualities of a traditional number nine height, strength, balance, pace, intelligent movement and proficiency with both feet Robert Lewandowski needed 61 matches to reach the 40-goal mark in the UEFA Champions League. Lewandowski has scored a total of 92 Champions League goals in 115 games across Borussia Dortmund, Bayern, and Barcelona.
4. Lionel Messi – 61
A prolific goalscorer, Messi is known for his finishing, positioning, quick reactions, and ability to make attacking runs to beat the defensive line. He also functions in a playmaking role, courtesy of his vision and range of passing. He has often been described as a magician; a conjurer, creating goals and opportunities where seemingly none exist. Arguably the greatest player of this generation, Lionel Messi scored 129 goals in 163 matches in the UEFA Champions League before leaving for MLS side Inter Miami in July. The second-highest goalscorer in UCL history behind Cristiano Ronaldo.
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3. Kylian Mbappe – 59
A versatile forward, Mbappé often plays as a winger, and is capable of playing on either flank, due to his ability with both feet. A highly skilful player, Mbappé is known for his dribbling ability, as well as his explosive acceleration, agility, quick feet, first touch, link-up play and creativity when in possession of the ball. Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) superstar Kylian Mbappe took 59 matches to score 40 goals in the UEFA Champions League.
2. Ruud van Nistelrooy – 45
A highly prolific goalscorer, Van Nistelrooy was known for being extremely clinical and opportunistic in front of goal and stood out throughout his career for his outstanding striking ability and finishing ability with either foot as well as his head, which earned him a reputation as one of the best strikers of his generation. A well-rounded centre-forward, in addition to his eye for goal, Van Nistelrooy was gifted with pace, physical strength, and shooting power, as well as excellent technical skills The Dutchman took just 45 games to score 40 goals in the UEFA Champions League.
1. Erling Haaland – 35
Erling Haaland, as he so often does, has obliterated the previous record. A prolific goalscorer and widely regarded as one of the best players in the world, Haaland has all the attributes of a complete centre-forward. The Norwegian’s strike to spark the comeback in our 3-2 win over RB Leipzig on Tuesday was his 40th in the Champions League. It has taken him just 35 matches to reach that figure. Incredibly, that’s 10 quicker than previous record holder Ruud van Nistelrooy who required 45 appearances to hit the figure.
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