Portugal will kick off their Euro 2020 qualification campaign tomorrow night against Ukraine, and one man will be hoping he can get his fill his boots in front of goal. Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the greatest goalscorers of all time, top goalscorer in the Champions League, most goals in European football and a whole rack full of Golden Boot awards as well, but there is one goalscoring record he is yet to break.
Ronaldo has hit a remarkable 85 goals for his country in just 154 games, putting him second on the all-time list for international goals. He has hit the net more times than Ferenc Puskas, Lionel Messi, Pele and even Stern John for his country but he is not yet at the top of the pile.
The man who does lead the way boasts a 24 goal lead on Ronnie and has a much better goals per game ratio. With 109 in 149 games, equating to a goals per game ratio of 0.73, Iran’s Ali Daei has scored more international goals than any other player. What a man. In comparison, Ronaldo is scoring for his country at a rate of 0.55 goals per game, and he has already represented his nation more times than Daei did.
His career was an interesting one and he represented his country for 13 years, between 1993 and 2006. At the age of 36, he played at the 2006 World Cup despite heavy criticism from the press regarding his fitness. He hung up his boots a year later and now manages in his homeland.
So Daei top the list and Ronaldo is in second, but which international star boasts the best goals per game record. No, not David Nugent, we are talking about player who have scored more than 30 goals for their country. That honour belongs to the iconic Poul Nielsen from Denmark, who amazingly scored 52 international goals in 38 games!
That works out at 1.37 goals per game and leaves Ronaldo looking rather sheepish with his record. He played between 1910 and 1925 and also scored 276 goals in 201 appearances for his club side Kjøbenhavns Boldklub. Imagine how much he would be worth in today’s market!
The top five of this list is an incredibly funny one. Kunishige Kamamoto of Japan is second with a goal rate of 0.94, having hit 80 goals in 84 games between 1964-77. The next three on the list are big names.
Ferenc Puskas again features with 84 goals in 89 games and a goal ratio of 0.94. Ex Man-City ace Shaun Goater ranks in fourth at 0.89 having scored 32 in 36 for Bermuda, just above Pele, who smashed in 77 goals for Brazil in 92 games. What a top five.
Anyway back to CR7. Ronaldo does not look like stopping scoring anytime soon but he will have to motor over the next for years to catch two greats of the game, in Ali Daei and Poul Nielsen.