Iran legend Ali Daei holds the record for the most international goals. He has netted 109 goals for his country in 149 appearances between 1993 and 2006. What makes Daei’s achievement even more special is that not even the likes of Brazilian great Pele, Argentine superstar Diego Maradona and Hungarian legend Ferenc Puskás were able to cross the mark of 90 goals in their international career as he went past the hundred goal mark. And for a long time, many believed that it would be impossible to break his record. However, today, after almost one and a half-decade later, Portuguese great Cristiano Ronaldo is just a few steps away from overthrowing Daei as the greatest international goal-scorer of all time.
Ronaldo, who is also the first-ever European player to score 100 international goals, is just seven goals shy from breaking Daei’s record.
Here is a list of the top 10 active footballers with the most goals for their country:
1. Cristiano Ronaldo | Portugal | 103 goals / 174 caps
Arguably the greatest footballer of the modern era, Ronaldo has broken several records in his illustrative career. And if he manages to go past Daei’s record, he would further stamp his authority as the greatest goal-scorer of all time. So far, he has netted 103 goals for Portugal in 174 appearances.
2. Sunil Chhetri | India | 74 goals / 117 caps
The captain fantastic of Indian soccer Sunil Chhetri is placed at the second spot in this elite list. He has netted 74 goals in 117 appearances.
3. Ali Mabkhout | United Arab Emirates (UAE) | 73 goals / 89 caps
UAE attacker Ali Mabkhout is occupying third place in this list with 73 goals from 89 appearances. Mabkhout has an impressive 0.82 goal per match ratio.
4. Lionel Messi | Argentina | 72 goals / 143 caps
The Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi is occupying the fourth spot in this list with 72 goals in his kitty from 143 appearances. He is two goals behind second-place Chhetri and 31 behind his arch-rival Ronaldo.
5. Robert Lewandowski | Poland | 66 goals / 118 caps
The ace Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski has netted 66 goals in 118 appearances for Poland. He is placed at the fifth spot on the list.
6. Neymar | Brazil | 65 goals / 104 caps
Paris Saint-Germain’s Neymar jr is placed at the sixth spot with 65 goals under his belt from 104 games.
7. Luis Suarez | Uruguay | 63 goals / 117 caps
Suarez has netted 63 goals for Uruguay in 117 games and currently occupy the seventh spot in this list.
8. Zlatan Ibrahimović | Sweden | 62 goals / 118 caps
The Swedish football great Zlatan Ibrahimović has scored 62 goals in international football in 118 matches.
9. Romelu Lukaku | Belgium | 60 goals / 93 caps
The AC Milan striker Romelu Lukaku has netted 60 goals for his country in 93 appearances.
10. Edin Džeko | Bosnia and Herzegovina | 59 goals / 114 caps
Edin Džeko is placed at the 10th spot in this elite list with 59 goals in his bag from 114 games.