Since the beginning of the 21st century, a majority of prolific goal scorers have graced the game of football, scoring goals and taking home numerous trophies for club and country.
In the attacking third, these players pose serious goal threats. In other words, even when they are not scoring, they frequently create lots of chances for their teammates to score goals. Furthermore, they are valuable for club and country due to their versatility up front. Without further ado, here are the top five goal scorers since the beginning of the 21st century as listed by Globesoccer.
1. Cristiano Ronaldo – (1124 games, 812 goals)
Cristiano Ronaldo is undoubtedly one of the greatest players to ever play the “beautiful game” of football. The 37-year-old has scored goals and collected numerous awards and honors throughout his career that set records for both club and international football.
The five-time winner of the Ballon d’Or is the all-time leading scorer for Real Madrid, Portugal, and the Champions League. He has also won league championships in three different nations. The Portuguese striker became the first Juventus player to reach 100 goals for the club in just three seasons.
2. Lionel Messi (974 games, 769 goals)
Lionel Messi is the only player to win seven Ballon d’Or awards and is the current holder of the award. The Argentinian hitman played most of his career at Barcelona where he established himself as the best player in the world. However, he joined Paris Saint-Germain last season after becoming a free agent at Barcelona. But his legacy in the game will continue to live even after his retirement.
3. Robert Lewandowski (839 games, 601 goals)
The 21st century is surely blessed to have a prolific striker like Robert Lewandowski. Although, he’s yet to win the Ballon d’Or award, he came close to getting it in 2020 but the ceremony was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, Lewandowski remains one of the best strikers in the world and his numbers speak volumes.
The Poland captain is currently the player with the highest goals in 2021/22 after scoring 50 goals for Bayern Munich. He’s also one of the highest goal scorers in the history of Bayern Munich and a top contender for the next Ballon d’Or. Robert Lewandowski could be heading to Barcelona this summer as he revealed that his time with Bayern Munich is over.
4. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (983 games, 572 goals)
Ibrahimovic is the oldest player on this list but he’s not showing any sign of old age as he keeps scoring every season. The current AC Milan hitman has played in almost all the big clubs in Europe including, Manchester United, Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, and Ajax. Ibra was one of the players who helped AC Milan to secure the 2021/22 Serie A title but he’s currently injured and might be out for seven months.
5. Luis Suarez (859 games, 521 goals)
Uruguayan top striker Luis Suarez has always been a player you can count on to bring goals for your team. The 35-year-old had an amazing season with Ajax before moving to Liverpool in 2013. Many people thought he would be stopped by the English Premier League defenders but the striker continued to torment the league and later joined Barcelona.
He formed a famous trio with Lionel Messi and Neymar as they caused a lot of damage to many clubs. Luis Suarez is currently a free agent after his contract with Atletico Madrid expired.