Barcelona’s five highest goalscorers in Champions League history
Posted on December 03, 2019
Few teams have enjoyed more success on the European stage in modern times than Barcelona.
Crowned winners in the final edition of the European Cup, the Catalan side have since lifted the Champions League on a further four occasions since its rebranding in 1992, with only Liverpool, AC Milan and rivals Real Madrid having ever enjoyed greater success on club football’s biggest stage.
The club’s Nou Camp home has played host to some of the tournament’s most iconic figures, and we’ve decided to look back at some of the greatest goalscorers to have donned the club’s famous colours.
Here are Barcelona’s five highest goalscorers in Champions League history, according to iSports API.
Neymar – 21 goals
The Brazilian international arrived at the Nou Camp in a highly anticipated deal in 2013, and after a season of adaptation to life in Europe began to demonstrate his undoubted talents on the Champions League stage.
Forming part of a famed attacking trio alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, Neymar would help fire Barcelona to a continental treble in 2014/15, scoring in the club’s Champions League final success over Juventus and finishing as the equal highest scorer in the competition.
He would be instrumental in one of the club’s greatest ever results, the miraculous 6-1 comeback victory over Paris Saint-Germain in 2017, eventually moving to the French side later that year in a world-record deal after scoring 21 goals in 40 European appearances for Barcelona.
Patrick Kluivert – 21 goals
Kluivert would announce himself to world football following his emergence as a teenager as part of Ajax’s Golden Generation, famously scoring the winning goal as an 18-year-old as the Dutch side won the Champions League in 1995.
Like many of that side he would depart for Europe’s giants, firstly to Milan before moving to Barcelona, where he continued to score prolifically.
In six seasons in Spain Kluivert would strike up a prolific partnership with Rivaldo and score 124 goals, 21 of those coming in the Champions League, as per iSports API.
Despite his best efforts, however, the semi-final stage would be as far as the forward would go in Barcelona colours, as his bid to add a second European Cup to his haul ultimately failed to materialise.
Luis Suarez – 22 goals
The second of the famed Neymar-Messi-Suarez trio to make our list, the Uruguayan has been a formidable presence in the Barcelona forward line since moving to Spain from Liverpool in 2014.
His first season saw the club conquer Europe, forming a brilliant partnership with the aforementioned duo which saw Suarez score seven Champions League goals as Barcelona secured a treble under former boss Luis Enrique.
Unpredictable but often brilliant, Suarez’s goalscoring exploits in Europe have dipped somewhat in recent seasons, though he remains key to Barcelona’s hopes of winning a sixth title and will hope to add to his record of 22 goals in 50 appearances during the current campaign.
Rivaldo – 25 goals
One of Brazilian football’s greatest players, Barcelona probably saw the peak years of Rivaldo during a hugely successful spell at the Nou Camp between 1997 and 2002.
That five-year spell saw Rivaldo crowned as World Player of the Year in 1999, as he led the club to back-to-back La Liga titles and twice into the latter stages of the Champions League.
Creative, skilful and with a penchant for the spectacular, Rivaldo would become a huge fan’s favourite to an adoring Nou Camp crowd.
Whilst success would ultimately not come in the form of a Champions League winner’s medal at the Nou Camp, Rivaldo would make his impact on the biggest stage and scored 25 goals for the club, the second-highest amount in Barcelona history, according to iSports API.
Lionel Messi – 112 goals
Possessing more goals than the other four players on this list combined is Lionel Messi, who continues to expand the boundaries of what we thought was possible from an elite footballing talent.
A four-times winner of the competition, Messi has hit 112 Champions League goals in just 137 appearances, second only to great rival Cristiano Ronaldo in the tournament’s history.
The Argentine superstar has finished as the competition’s top scorer on six occasions, whilst no player has ever scored more than his eight Champions League hat-tricks.
Averaging 0.82 goals per game, Messi has comfortably the best ratio since the rebranding of the old European Cup. He continues to thrive on Europe’s biggest stage, and will be the central figure in the club’s pursuit of a sixth Champions League title this season.
Real Madrid’s five highest goalscorers in Champions League history
For many clubs the Champions League is the pinnacle, but for Real Madrid it remains an obsession. The Spanish giants have a special relationship with Europe’s premier competition, with no side in history having been crowned champions of the continent on more occasions than Los Blancos. The club’s Bernabeu home has played host to some of the game’s most iconic stars, with several having produced their most memorable moments on Champions League nights. We’ve decided to look back at some of the club’s greatest, with a look at Real Madrid‘s five highest goal scorers in Champions League history, as per iSports API data. 5. Gareth Bale; Luis Figo; Guti – 16 goals The Welsh winger may be enduring an unhappy time in the Spanish capital at present, but there can be no denying Bale’s contribution to Real’s unprecedented success in the Champions League in recent seasons. Having arrived in a world-record deal in 2013, Bale would help the La Liga side to win the elusive La Decima title in 2014, scoring in the final victory over city rivals Atletico. The former Tottenham Hotspur man would then play his part in a hat-trick of consecutive titles between 2016 and 2018, the latter of which he came off the bench to score twice against Liverpool – the first of which was arguably one of the greatest goals in the competition’s history, according to iSports API. A four-time winner, Bale has scored 16 Champions League goals in 53 appearances since moving to the Bernabeu, a figure also matched by two midfield talents of the club’s first Galactico era – Luis Figo and Guti. 4. Fernando Morientes – 17 goals Part of the Real Madrid side who won three Champions League trophies between 1998 and 2002, Morientes enjoyed a hugely successful eight-year spell at the club after joining from Real Zaragoza before being squeezed out as the Galactico era began at the Bernabeu. A goalscorer in the competition’s first ever final between two teams from the same country in 2000, Morientes scored 17 Champions League goals for the club before departing on loan to Monaco, where he famously finished as the tournament’s top scorer and scored in both legs of their victory over parent club Real Madrid. The Spaniard joined Liverpool the next season, but he was cup-tied for their miraculous Champions League final triumph over AC Milan in Istanbul. 3. Karim Benzema – 48 goals An arguably underrated presence in a Real Madrid side that has dominated the Champions League in recent seasons, Karim Benzema has won the competition four times since moving to the Bernabeu from Lyon in 2009. Having helped Carlo Ancelotti’s side to La Decima in 2014, Benzema would be part of the side that would become the first of the Champions League era to retain the trophy by winning three consecutive editions between 2016 and 2018. A goalscorer in fortuitous circumstances in the latter final victory against Liverpool, Benzema has often scored goals at crucial moments in big European fixtures and has an impressive one in two record, scoring 48 Champions League goals in just 96 appearances for the club, as per iSports API. 2. Raul – 66 goals An iconic figure at the Bernabeu, the former Spain striker would come through the ranks at the club before establishing himself as one of their greatest ever goalscorers, whilst he would also become the Champions League’s most prolific forward until the arrival of the Lionel Messi/Cristiano Ronaldo era. Raul would help the Spanish giants to three Champions League titles with five years between 1998 and 2002, scoring in deciders against Valencia and Bayer Leverkusen respectively. Named as UEFA Club Forward of the Year for three successive seasons at the turn of the millennium, the former club captain is regarded as one of the best players in Real Madrid’s long and illustrious history and scored 66 goals in the famous white shirt. 1. Cristiano Ronaldo – 105 goals The greatest goalscorer in the history of both Real Madrid and the Champions League, the Portuguese superstar has often turned Europe’s elite tournament into his own personal playground during a glittering career at some of the continent’s leading clubs. Having moved to the Bernabeu in a world-record move from Manchester United in 2009, Ronaldo would hit a staggering 105 Champions League goals in just 101 appearances during nine seasons in the Spanish capital, helping the club to lift the trophy on four occasions and extend their record to 13 European Cups, recorded by iSports API. He would become the first player to win the trophy five times in the Champions League era, whilst also becoming the first player ever to score in three separate finals. His incredible list of records include the most goals in a single Champions League campaign (17), becoming the only player to score in 10 consecutive games and the most assists in the tournament’s history.
Five most expensive signings in Bundesliga history
Germany’s Bundesliga clubs broke their record transfer spend in the 2019 summer transfer window, with the 18 clubs splashing out around £670m on new talent. Notable arrivals to the division included the likes of Atletico Madrid defender Lucas Hernandez and Barcelona’s Philippe Coutinho, whilst stars such as Benjamin Pavard, Mats Hummels and Thorgan Hazard transferred between divisional rivals. Following another summer of spending, where do the new additions rank in terms of the Bundesliga’s biggest ever buys? Here are the six most expensive signings in Bundesliga history, and it’s a list unsurprisingly dominated by one club, as per iSports API data. Arturo Vidal Juventus to Bayern Munich – €37m The powerhouse midfielder had spent four impressive years in the Bundesliga with Bayer Leverkusen before departing for Serie A and Juventus, before Bayern Munich opted to bring the Chilean back to German football in a €37m deal n 2015. Three seasons in Munich would deliver three successive Bundesliga titles, with Vidal bringing tenacity to his role as a box-to-box midfielder. He would also win one German Cup and two German Super Cups, scoring 22 goals in 123 appearances for the club before leaving for Barcelona in 2018, as per iSports API. Mario Götze Borussia Dortmund to Bayern Munich – €37m Having been a key figure in the Dortmund side which won back-to-back Bundesliga titles in 2011 and 2012, emerging star Götze shocked the club in 2013 by announcing he would be leaving for rivals Bayern Munich. The timing of the announcement sparked anger and came on the eve of the club’s Champions League semi-final with Real Madrid, with the news that the Dortmund starlet would defect for the Bavarian giants. Götze’s decision was in part due to the arrival of Pep Guardiola as manager in Munich, though the attacking midfielder struggled to establish himself as an undisputed first choice. Three seasons at Bayern brought three successive titles, though having found himself on the periphery and returned to Dortmund in 2016. Gotze looks like he will never quite fulfil that early promise, although he can console himself with having scored the winning goal in the 2014 World Cup. Javi Martinez Athletic Bilbao to Bayern – €40m Bayern Munich broke the Bundesliga transfer-record to sign midfielder Javi Martinez in 2012, activating the Spaniard’s €40m release clause in his Athletic Bilbao contract. Since his arrival from La Liga seven years ago, Martinez has won a host of trophies in Munich, including seven successive league titles, four German Cups and the 2013 Champions League, according to iSports API. Now 31, he continues to play an important role in the Bayern squad, with his ability to be equally adept in central midfield or at centre-back proving invaluable. Corentin Tolisso Lyon to Bayern Munich – €47.5m Despite boasting a wealth of midfield talent, serial Bundesliga winners Bayern Munich once again broke the league’s transfer-record in 2017, as Lyon midfielder Tolisso moved to Munich in a deal worth up to €47.5m in 2017. The 25-year-old scored 10 goals in 40 appearances during his debut season at the club, before a ruptured cruciate ligament injury hindered his progress and saw him miss the majority of the 2018/19 season, as per iSports API. An athletic box-to-box midfielder who is comfortable in a variety of midfield roles, Tolisso will hope to re-establish himself in the Bayern side this season as the club seek a record-extending 29th league title. Lucas Hernandez Atletico Madrid to Bayern Munich – €80m The most expensive signing of Germany’s 2019 summer transfer window and the most expensive in Bundesliga history, champions Bayern Munich secured the signing of Atletico Madrid’s French international Hernandez for a fee of €80m. The 23-year-old played a key role as France were crowned world champions in 2018 and had impressed in La Liga during his time in the Spanish capital, also helping Diego Simeone’s side to the 2018 Europa League. Comfortable centrally or at left-back, he bolsters a defensive line already including the likes of Niklas Süle and Jerome Boateng and will be looking to establish himself as a leading figure in Niko Kovac’s side. A knee injury delayed his start to life in Munich but having now returned to full fitness, will be hoping to make a major impact following his arrival in Germany.
Rating the six players with the most Champions League hat-tricks
Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski joined an exclusive list of players on Tuesday night, scoring four times against Red Star Belgrade to become just the sixth player in history to score three or more Champions League hat-tricks. Lewandowski’s fine form has seen him score 10 times already in this season’s group stage, but how does the prolific Pole compare to the players with the most Champions League trebles? Here are six players with the most Champions League hat-tricks, according to iSports API data. Mario Gomez – 3 hat-tricks The veteran forwards three hat-tricks all came during a successful and trophy-laden four-year spell at Bayern Munich, in which Gomez helped the club to seven honours including the 2013 Champions League. Gomez’ first treble came in a 4-0 group stage thrashing of CFR Cluj in November 2010, before repeating the feat almost a year to the day the following season in a thrilling 3-2 victory over Napoli at the Allianz Arena. The German got his third hat-trick during a 7-0 humiliation of Basel in the last-16 in 2012, helping himself to a four goal haul as Bayern recovered from a 1-0 first leg defeat to set a new record for biggest ever knock-out stage victory. A regular goal scorer at Champions League level, Gomez has scored 26 goals in 44 appearances in the tournament for Stuttgart and Bayern, recorded by iSports API. Luiz Adriano – 3 hat-tricks Perhaps a surprising name on this list, the Brazilian was for some time Shakhtar Donetsk’s go-to man as the Ukrainian side looked to make an impression on Europe’s biggest stage, netting his first Champions League treble in a 5-2 group stage victory over FC Nordsjælland in 2012. Adriano gained notoriety two years later however, becoming the first player in history to score hat-tricks in back-to-back games, a feat since matched by only Cristiano Ronaldo. Bate Borisov were the forward’s victims on both occasions, being thrashed by an aggregate score of 12-0 over two group stage fixtures, whilst the first of those meetings saw Adriano become just the second player in the tournament’s history to score five times in a single fixture. The former AC Milan and Spartak Moscow forward can be proud of his records, however, his lack of impact at the business end of the tournament counts against him in our rankings. Filippo Inzaghi – 3 hat-tricks An iconic penalty-box poacher of European football, Inzaghi would enjoy a stellar career at the likes of Juventus and AC Milan. Only Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Raul have scored more than Inzaghi’s 70 goals in European club competition, with 46 of those strikes coming at Champions League level. That total is boosted by a record of three hat-tricks, the first coming in 4-1 victory against Dynamo Kiev for Juventus in 1998 before also netting a treble for the Turin side in an entertaining 4-4 draw with Hamburg two years later, according to iSports API. The Italian’s greatest success on the European stage would come with Milan, however, twice lifting the trophy which included scoring a match-winning brace in the 2007 final against Liverpool in Athens. Inzaghi scored a third Champions League hat-trick prior to that, hitting a treble in a 4-0 away victory at Deportivo La Coruna. A prolific scorer on football’s biggest stage and a two-time Champions League winner, Inzaghi scores highly in our ratings. Robert Lewandowski – 3 hat-tricks The latest player to join this list courtesy of a four-goal haul against Red Star Belgrade, the Bayern Munich forward is arguably enjoying the finest form of his career at present. The Polish international has long been recognised as one of the great forwards in the world game, having hit 63 goals in just 85 Champions League appearances during spells at Borussia Dortmund and Bayern. It would be Lewandowski’s first treble that would truly announce himself as a superstar, producing one of the great individual Champions League displays to hit four goals against Real Madrid in the 2013 semi-finals. Lewandowski’s performance would help Dortmund advance to a final meeting with Bundesliga rivals Bayern, ultimately ending in defeat in agonising fashion at Wembley. Since making the switch to Munich his incredible goalscoring exploits have continued, the 31-year-old hitting his second treble against Dinamo Zagreb in 2015 before his one-man demolition of Red Star. His latest showing saw him score four times in just 14 minutes, Lewandowski joining Lionel Messi as only the second player to score four or more Champions League goals in two different matches. Cristiano Ronaldo – 8 hat-tricks Holding the joint record for most Champions League hat-tricks is Juventus superstar Cristi**ano Ronaldo, with perhaps no player in history having thrived quite as much on European club football’s biggest stage. The most prolific goalscorer in the history of the competition, Ronaldo became the first player in the Champions League era to win the trophy five times, also becoming the only player to score in three separate finals. Ronaldo’s feats include scoring back-to-back hat-tricks against Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid in the knockout stages as Real Madrid would win the second of three consecutive titles in 2017, remarkably netting two trebles within the space of 14 days in the latter stages of the tournament. Ronaldo would score seven hat-tricks during his spell in the Spanish capital before adding an eighth during his debut season at Juventus, the five-times Ballon d’Or winner having scored an incredible 127 goals in 167 appearances in the Champions League, as per iSports API. His move to Juventus was confirmed with the hope Ronaldo could inspire the Turin side to an elusive Champions League title, few would back against the forward delivering. Lionel Messi – 8 hat-tricks Level with Ronaldo is generational rival Lionel Messi, the duo having vied for the position of world’s best player for over a decade. The Barcelona star has lifted the trophy on four occasions with the Catalan side, scoring 113 Champions League goals in just 139 appearances during a glittering career at the Camp Nou. Those goals include eight hat-tricks, memorably dismantling Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal with a four-goal haul in a quarter-final in 2010 for his first Champions League treble, before becoming the first player in the competition’s history to score five times in a single fixture against Bayer Leverkusen two years later. The first of those performances led to former Arsenal boss Wenger describing Messi as the greatest player he had ever seen, and who are we to argue with that assessment?