When it comes to the Champions League, there is one name that stands above the rest – Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Portuguese superstar has etched his name in football history as the top scorer of all time in the Champions League and UEFA club competitions.
Not only that, he is also the most prolific scorer in the history of senior international football.
It wasn’t always smooth sailing for Ronaldo in the Champions League.
During his first spell at Manchester United, he didn’t score until his 27th Champions League game.
At that time, he was not playing as an out-and-out striker but rather as a winger.
However, everything changed when he made the switch to a central striking role.
After leaving Old Trafford for Real Madrid, Ronaldo started to find the back of the net with frightening regularity.
He continued to rack up big numbers, establishing himself as one of the greatest goal-scorers the game has ever seen.
On 18 April 2017, he achieved a remarkable milestone by becoming the first player to reach 100 goals in the Champions League.
He accomplished this feat in his 137th appearance, scoring a hat-trick against Bayern Munich.
Ronaldo’s impressive record doesn’t end there.
He has won the Champions League once with Manchester United and four times with Real Madrid. He is also the only player to have scored in three Champions League finals.
His ability to score under pressure and in crucial moments has made him a true icon of the competition.
It’s not just in the Champions League that Ronaldo has excelled.
He has also scored eight Champions League hat-tricks, a feat matched only by Lionel Messi.
These two superstars have dominated the competition for over a decade, consistently setting new records and pushing the boundaries of what is possible on the football field.
Leading Goal Scorer In Champions League
While Ronaldo’s records speak for themselves, it’s essential to acknowledge other prominent figures in the all-time UEFA Champions League top scorers list.
Lionel Messi, Ronaldo’s long-time rival, holds the second position with 129 goals.
Robert Lewandowski follows closely with 92 goals, and Karim Benzema has an impressive tally of 90 goals.
The Champions League has witnessed many remarkable goal scorers over the years, including Raúl González, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Thomas Müller, Thierry Henry, Zlatan Ibrahimović, Andriy Shevchenko, and Filippo Inzaghi.
Each of these players has made a significant impact on the competition and etched their names in its history.
Greatest UEFA Champions League Top Scorers of All Time
- 140: Cristiano Ronaldo (POR, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Juventus)
- 129: Lionel Messi (ARG, Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain)
- 92: Robert Lewandowski (POL, Borussia Dortmund, Bayern München, Barcelona)*
- 90: Karim Benzema (FRA, Lyon, Real Madrid)
- 71: Raúl González (ESP, Real Madrid, Schalke)
- 56: Ruud van Nistelrooy (NED, PSV Eindhoven, Manchester United, Real Madrid)
- 53: Thomas Müller (GER, Bayern München)*
- 50: Thierry Henry (FRA, Monaco, Arsenal, Barcelona)
- 48: Zlatan Ibrahimović (SWE, Ajax, Juventus, Inter, Barcelona, AC Milan, Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United)
- 48: Andriy Shevchenko (UKR, Dynamo Kyiv, AC Milan, Chelsea)
- 46: Filippo Inzaghi (ITA, Juventus, AC Milan)
As the Champions League continues to evolve, it will be fascinating to see if Ronaldo’s records can be surpassed. However, for now, there is no denying that he stands tall as the highest scorer in the history of the competition, leaving an enduring legacy that will be remembered for generations to come.
This article was updated 2 months ago