Who are the top 10 active goalscorers in international football?
These players are outright legends for their respective countries.
Goalscorers are usually always in demand and command huge transfer fees. If you are a player, who scored plenty of goals in club football, the same is expected of you on the international stage. There have been many strikers in football, who have excelled in club football and smashed records but have struggled for consistency on the international stage. That’s why footballers, who score consistently in both club and international football, are revered worldwide. All-time greats like Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are among top the active international goalscorers in international.
Ronaldo is the first European footballer to score 100 or more international goals. He is also the all-time leading active international goalscorer. Messi isn’t far behind and has already netted close to 80 goals for the Argentina national team. The list of top active international goalscorers has some of the most successful strikers of this generation. Here we take a look at the top 10 active international goalscorers.
10. Zlatan Ibrahimovic – Sweden (62 goals)
Sweden’s legendary striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has scored 62 goals for the national team. The 39-year-old recently came out of international retirement to help the country at Euro 2020. However, he had to withdraw due to an injury. The forward may not return to the national team considering his age, but one can expect the extraordinary when Ibrahimovic is part of the discussion.
9. Edin Dzeko – Bosnia-Herzegovina (64 goals)
Edin Dzeko represents Bosnia-Herzegovina in international football. The AS Roma forward has scored 60 goals for the national team in 115 caps. Furthermore, Dzeko is also the highest goalscorer in the history of Bosnia-Herzegovina. The 35-year-old still has a few years before he would consider retiring as a professional and could add more goals to his tally.
8. Luis Suarez – Uruguay (68 goals)
Luis Suarez is next on the list, having scored 65 goals for the Uruguayan national team. Despite his age, the Atletico Madrid striker has surprised everyone with his goal-scoring instinct and is likely to add more international goals to his tally. Suarez is also the all-time leading goalscorer for Uruguay.
7. Romelu Lukaku – Belgium (68 goals)
Romelu Lukaku is one of the most lethal goalscorers in international football. The Belgian forward has scored 68 goals for the Red Devils in merely 101 appearances. The Inter Milan striker was Belgium’s top scorer at Euro 2020 with four goals to his name. One can expect Lukaku to rise further in these rankings with time.
Lukaku is set to play under Jose Mourinho at Roma in the 2023-24 season.
6. Robert Lewandowski – Poland (78 goals)
Poland’s Robert Lewandowski is next up on the list with 72 goals to his name. The Bayern Munich striker has played 125 matches for the national team. He is the all-time leading goalscorer for Poland. The 32-year-old scored three goals at Euro 2020 to increase his goal tally for Poland.
Robert Lewandowski is enjoying his time at Spanish club Barcelona. The Polish striker won the LaLiga in his first season at the club.
5. Neymar – Brazil (78 goals)
Neymar is hailed as one of the most gifted players in world football. The Paris Saint-Germain attacker represents Brazil on the international stage. The 29-year-old has scored 78 goals for the national team. He scored two goals at Copa America 2021 to add to his tally and take another step closer to surpassing Pele as the highest goalscorer for Pele.
Neymar will be looking to revive his career at Saudi club Al-Hilal. He was one of the biggest names to join the Saudi club in 2023.
4. Ali Mabkhout – UAE (80 goals)
Ali Mabkhout is one of the two Asian players in the top-10 highest active goalscorers in international football. The veteran striker has scored 78 goals for the United Arab Emirates in merely 96 games. The 30-year-old will continue to feature in future for the national team and will most likely add more strikes to his tally.
3. Sunil Chhetri – India (92 goals)
India’s all-time leading goalscorer Sunil Chhetri has now scored 92 goals on the international stage. The forward is aging like fine wine and continues to lead the team by example. Chhetri is a leader on and off the pitch and inspires millions back home. He has a few more years of top-level football left in him and could add more goals to those he has.
Chhetri showcased his exceptional skills and talent by scoring a remarkable hat-trick against Pakistan in the SAFF Championship 2023, further elevating his goal tally to an impressive 90 goals.
2. Lionel Messi – Argentina (105 goals)
Lionel Messi has scored 105 goals for Argentina on the international circuit. However, his international goalscoring feats do not hold a candle to his form in club football. Having said that, Messi is still one of the leading active goalscorers and World Cup winners with Argentina.
The six-time Ballon d’Or winner was the top goalscorer in Copa America 2021 with four goals and captained his nation to their first major title in 28 years. Messi won the Golden Boot and was named the Player of the Tournament after leading La Albiceleste to the trophy. Messi scored five goals against Estonia in an international friendly to take his goal tally over 85.
Lionel Messi also added the World Cup title to his name. He went on to score seven goals in the tournament.
1. Cristiano Ronaldo – Portugal (123 goals)
Cristiano Ronaldo is the leading active goalscorer in international football and football history. The Portuguese is the only active player to score more than a century of goals. He has 123 strikes for Portugal. Ronaldo will continue to lead the team in upcoming major tournaments despite heading towards the final stages of his career. The Portuguese is also the highest goal scorer in the history of the UEFA European Championships.
Ronaldo currently plays for Saudi Pro League side Al-Nassr. The 38-year-old has still got the legs to play more football in his career. He is likely to play the UEFA Euro 2024 and this might be his last international tournament.
**The article was last updated on September 10, 2023.
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