One step away from becoming the most prolific French scorer in national team history. By scoring twice during Les Bleus’ victorious entry into the 2022 World Cup in Qatar (4-1 victory against Australia), Olivier Giroud joined Thierry Henry at the top of the ranking of the top scorers of the France team (51 goals).
If the AC Milan striker were to score an additional goal in the blue jersey, he would become the top scorer in the history of the France team. In the process, Olivier Giroud (115 caps) would take 50th place in the ranking of top scorers in the national team, all nations combined. He would then be tied with the Dane Poul Nielsen (52 goals in 38 games between 1910 and 1925), just behind the Englishman Wayne Rooney (49th with 53 goals).
Cristiano Ronaldo far ahead
In first place, the Portuguese Cristiano Ronaldo (37) seems untouchable for the moment. Author of 117 goals in 191 games since 2003, the striker who has just left Manchester United has a 27-goal lead over his main rival, Lionel Messi (3rd). The latter, aged 35, is playing his last World Cup with Argentina and does not seem able to catch up with him.
Three men retired for more than fifteen years complete the first five steps of the ranking: the Iranian Ali Daei (2nd, 109 goals), the Malaysian Mokhtar Dahari (4th, 85 goals) and the Hungarian player Ferenc Puskás (5th, 84 goals). The player who gave his name to the award for the most beautiful goal of the year was caught last June by Indian striker Sunil Chhetri, himself closely followed by Ali Mabkhout (United Arab Emirates, 80 goals).
The World Cup, an opportunity for several players
All these players surpass in number of achievements the Brazilian legend Pelé (8th). The most prolific striker in the history of football, author of more than 1,200 club and selection goals, has scored “only” 77 times during his international career.
He should even be overtaken by his compatriot Neymar (11th), who is only two short lengths from the Santos icon. Brazil is also the country best represented in the top 50 international scorers, with also Ronaldo (30th, 62 goals) and Romario (41st, 55 goals).
Several players also hope to take advantage of the 2022 World Cup in order to increase their counter. This is the case of the Uruguayan Edinson Cavani (34th, 58 goals) and his compatriot and teammate at the forefront of Albiceleste Luis Suárez (18th, 68 goals). The latter could overtake FC Barcelona star Robert Lewandowski (16th, 69 goals), who is also competing with Poland. Finally the Belgian Romero Lukaku (24th) should take advantage of the World Cup to bring his total goals above 65.