Players With the Most International Goals


Posted: September 10, 2020

Updated: September 10, 2020

  • Pele scored 77 goals for Brazil in his career
  • Cristiano Ronaldo is just 8 goals away from the top spot
  • Iranian Ali Daei scored the most, 109 international goals so far

Cristiano Ronaldo has just scored his 100th and 101st international goals which made him second in the all-time list. In the players with the most international goals, we can find national heroes and the biggest stars of the football world. Let’s see who they are. 

Scoring for your national team is a big thing for every football player, from a player of a smaller country to a member of the biggest football nations’ teams as well. Some might say that it’s easier to score more goals in a smaller team, which probably plays more against similar strength teams. Still, to score against anyone is not easy on a professional level and all these players on the list deserve our respect for representing their countries in such a prolific way.

Top 10 list of players with the most international goals

10. Sunil Chhetri, India

You might not think of an Indian player when it comes to football, but Sunil Chhetri is the second-highest active goalscorer behind Cristiano Ronaldo. He has the most caps with 115 and the most goals in his country with 72. At the age of 36, he is still playing and leading the Indian national team as the captain of it. Captain Fantastic spent most of his years in the Indian I-League but also had a short stint in the US and in Portugal as well. Chhetri had his best season in 2011 when he scored 13 goals in 17 appearances for his national team.

9. Bashar Abdullah, Kuwait

Bashar Abdullah played in the Kuwait national team between 1996 and 2007, scoring 75 goals in this period. He scored eight goals against Bhutan during an Asian Cup qualifying game in 2000, which is a superb performance alone. He didn’t play for any big club but helped his team, Al-Samiyah to win the league three times. And he was also a member of the team which reached the 2000 Olympics in Sydney and the semi-finals of the AFC Asian Cup.

players with the most international goals
He’s going to be on this list one day!

8. Sandor Kocsis, Hungary

Sandor Kocsis is the only player on the list, who scored more goals than his caps, 75 goals in 68 games. He was a member of the legendary Golden Team along with Ferenc Puskas and the others. He scored 11  goals in the 1954 World Cup, including two hat-tricks. His performance is still second on the all-time World Cup list. In club level, Kocsis was just as productive, first playing for Honved where he scored an incredible 176  goals in six years. No surprise that he was the top goal-scorer in all Europe between 1952 and 54. Following his move to Barcelona, he continued scoring for the Catalans.

7.  Pele, Brazil

Surely we don’t have to introduce the next player on the list, who is one of the best players in the world. Pele scored 77 goals in 92 appearances, which were official games. Plus 18 in unofficial ones, which would make him second on the list. Nevermind, he is still one of the best goalscorers with important goals. Like scoring two goals in the 1958 World Cup final against Sweden at the age of only 17. His goals helped the Selecao won three World Cups, he is still the all-time top goalscorer for Brazil. Online sportsbooks in Portugal predict another victory for the team in the next 2022 World Cup. Besides scoring for the national team, Pele of course netted several goals for his club, Santos. He is also the all-time top goalscorer for the club.

6. Hussein Saeed, Iraq

Iraq’s top goalscorer, Hussein Saeed scored 78 international goals in his career including goals on the 1980 and 1984 Summer Olympics. He played a big part in his county’s success to qualify for these tournaments. He only played for one club, Al-Talaba in his career, helping his team to three league wins. In these years he was also the top goalscorer of the league.

5. Godfrey Chitalu, Zambia

One of the best African players, Godfrey Chitalu also belongs to the players with the most international goals. He scored 79 goals in 108 games for his national team between 1968 and 1980. He is the top goalscorer of Zambia and could have been even more famous if his record of netting 107 goals in 1972 had been verified by FIFA. It wasn’t, so the record of the most goals scored in a single year belonged to Gerd Muller. Until it was broken by Lionel Messi in 2012. Sadly Chitalu had a tragic end. He lost life as the manager of the Zambia national team in a plane crash with his players and coaching staff.

4. Kunishige Kamamoto, Japan

Japan’s first top player, Kunishige Kamamoto scored 80 goals in 84 appearances for the national team between 1964 and 1977. He was the top goalscorer in the 1968 Olympics in Mexico with seven goals. Including a hat-trick against Nigeria and two goals against France in the quarter-finals. The team finished in 3rd place which is still the country’s best result in international tournaments. Kamamoto also played for a single club in his career, Yanmar Diesel, and won the league and the Emperor’s Cup three times with it.

players with the most international goals
Who’s your favorite?

3. Ferenc Puskas, Hungary

In the players with the most international goals, we can find another legendary player, Ferenc Puskas. As the captain of the Mighty Magyars, he won the 1952 Olympic Games scoring four goals in the tournament. He also took part in the legendary games against England in 1953 and 1954 when Hungary won 6-3 and 7-1, scoring twice on both games. Even his goals couldn’t help though in the 1954 World Cup final which Germany won 2-1. In club level, Puskas played for Honved first and was the league’s top goalscorer four occasions. Then he moved to Spain and played for Real Madrid, helping Los Blancos to three European Cup titles. The best Hungarian player scored 84 goals in 85 caps.

2. Cristiano Ronaldo, Portugal

The five-time Ballon d’Or winner has just scored two more goals at the weekend, making his total number of international goals 101. An unbelievable record of the Portuguese superstar who scored his first international goal at Euro 2004 helping his team to reach the final. The team failed then but finally got the title in 2016 under the lead of Ronaldo. Online gambling sites in Portugal hope for another great performance in Euro 2020.  Ronaldo is the most capped Portuguese player with 166 appearances and certainly the top goalscorer of the country with his 101 goals. He also helped his clubs to several titles. At Real Madrid, he became the club’s top goalscorer after scoring 450 goals in total. The 35-year old superstar won the European Golden Shoes award four times and scored more than 700 goals in his career so far. And he is not far from the record of the winner of this list…

1. Ali Daei, Iran

Ali Daei scored 109 goals in 149 appearances for the Iran national team, which is the most goals scored by any player in football’s history. In his career between 1993 and 2006, Daei scored four goals twice. Against South Korea in the 1996 Asian Cup and against Laos in 2006,  in a World Cup qualifier. He had a successful club career as well.  As he played in the Bundesliga between 1997 and 2002 for clubs like Bayern Munich and Hertha. The Iranian scored in the Champions League for the Berliner team, still, he was most prolific in the national team.

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