The Champions League’s youngest goalscorers ranked after Ansu Fati breaks record

  • Rob Swan

Ansu Fati is officially the youngest goalscorer in Champions League history.

The hugely promising forward scored the winning goal for Barcelona against Inter Milan on Tuesday night aged 17 years and 40 days.

He broke the previous record which was held by Peter Ofori-Quaye, who scored for Olympiacos against Rosenborg aged 17 years and 194 days back in October 1997.

We thought we’d look back at the competition’s youngest goalscorers and rank them in order.

No prizes for guessing who finishes in top spot…

21. Mariyan Ognyanov | 18 years, 59 days

Levski Sofia (v Chelsea), 2006/07

If you knew that Ognyanov, capped once by Bulgaria, last played for CSKA 1948 in the Bulgarian second tier then your football knowledge is better than ours.

20. Martin Klein | 17 years, 240 days

Sparta Prague (v Panathinaikos), 2001/02

Klein had a fairly unspectacular career after making an impact at Sparta Prague in the early-2000s, although he was capped once by the Czech Republic in 2009.

The 35-year-old currently plays for Rakovník in the Czech third tier.

19. Peter Ofori-Quaye | 17 years, 194 days

Olympiacos (v Rosenborg), 1997/98

Sorry, Peter, but the Champions League youngest goalscorer record is no longer yours.

The former Ghana international went on to play for various lesser-known clubs after leaving Olympiacos in 2003 including Hapoel Kiryat Shmona and Accra Hearts of Oak SC before hanging up his boots in 2012.

18. Per Ciljan Skjelbred | 18 years, 90 days

Rosenborg (v Olympiakos), 2005/06

Capped 43 times for Norway between 2007-2017, Skjelbred has played for Hertha Berlin since 2014.

17. Breel Embolo | 17 years, 263 days

Basel (v Ludogorets), 2014/15

Now 22 years old, Embolo is performing well at Borussia Mönchengladbach after leaving Schalke in the summer.

16. Bojan Krkic | 17 years, 217 days

Barcelona (v Schalke), 2007/08

Many exciting youngsters at Barcelona have failed to live up the hype – and sitting top of the list, unfortunately, is Bojan.

Who would have guessed back in 2007 that the diminutive striker would spend five of his career at Stoke City? Absolutely nobody.

15. Ansu Fati | 17 years, 40 days

Barcelona (v Inter Milan), 2019/20

It’s still so early in his career that we can’t be certain whether or not he’ll turn out to be a top player, but the 17-year-old is certainly on the right tracks.

Now the Champions League’s youngest ever scorer, Fati has the world at his feet.

14. Roque Santa Cruz | 18 years, 71 days

Bayern Munich (v PSV), 1999/00

A good striker but not a great one, Santa Cruz scored goals fairly regularly in both the Bundesliga (with Bayern Munich) and the Premier League (with Blackburn).

Moving to Manchester City in 2009 was the beginning of the end for the Paraguayan at the highest level.

13. Nigel de Jong | 18 years 80 days

Ajax (v Arsenal), 2002/03

A tough-tackling, no-nonsense midfielder, De Jong went on to play for the likes of Manchester City, AC Milan and Galatasaray after leaving Ajax in 2006.

He also earned 81 caps for the Netherlands.

12. Mateo Kovacic | 17 years, 215 days

Dinamo Zagreb (v Lyon), 2011/12

You don’t play for Inter Milan, Real Madrid and Chelsea by the age of 25 unless you’re a top player – and Kovacic most certainly is.

The Croatian midfielder is currently shining for Chelsea under Frank Lampard.

11. Mario Balotelli | 18 years, 85 days

Inter (v Anorthosis), 2008/09

Balotelli had the potential to become a truly great striker. Sadly, though, he will end his career knowing that he could – and should – have achieved more.

Now 29, we’ve probably seen the best of the Italy international, who won the coveted Golden Boy award back in 2010.

10. Aaron Ramsey | 17 years, 300 days

Arsenal (v Fenerbahce), 2008/09

Now plying his trade alongside Cristiano Ronaldo at Juventus – and earning an absolute fortune for doing so – following 11 topsy-turvy years with Arsenal.

9. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain | 18 years, 44 days

Arsenal (v Olympiakos), 2011/12

Oxlade-Chamberlain was decent at Arsenal but has taken his game to the next level since joining Liverpool, where he won the Champions League last season.

Still just 26, the midfielder has a big few years coming up for both Liverpool and England.

8. Samuel Kuffour | 18 years, 61 days

Bayern Munich (v Spartak Moscow), 1994/95

Kaffour is the defender who was left thumping the Camp Nou turf after Manchester United’s famous comeback against Bayern Munich in the 1999 Champions League final.

But he also enjoyed a lot of success during his career, winning six Bundesliga titles, four German Cups and, yes, the Champions League with Bayern before moving on to AS Roma in 2005.

7. Patrick Kluivert | 18 years, 89 days

Ajax (v AEK Athens), 1994/95

Best remembered for his six-year spell at Barcelona between 1998-2004, Kluivert was part of the famous Ajax team that won the 1995 Champions League.

He also scored 40 goals in 79 games for the Netherlands.

6. Cesc Fabregas | 17 years, 218 days

Arsenal (v Rosenborg), 2004/05

Now the fifth-youngest goalscorer in Champions League history, Fabregas has won just about every major trophy you can think of during his career – apart from the European Cup.

Maybe one day, Cesc.

5. Andriy Shevchenko | 18 years, 69 days

Dynamo Kiev (v Bayern Munich), 1994/95

Arguably the best No. 9 in world football during his first spell at AC Milan, Shevchenko’s career sadly tailed off after swapping the San Siro for Stamford Bridge in 2006 – but never forget how good he was during the early-2000s.

4. Karim Benzema | 17 years, 355 days

Lyon (v Rosenborg), 2005/06

Now the sixth-highest goalscorer in Real Madrid’s history, Benzema has been underrated by many throughout his career.

The fact is there haven’t been many better centre-forwards over the past 10 years than the unselfish Frenchman.

3. Raul | 18 years, 113 days

Real Madrid (v Ferencvaros), 1995/96

A Real Madrid icon, Raul was hugely successful at the Bernabeu, scoring 323 goals in 741 games and winning plenty of silverware in the process.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s achievements at Real Madrid have made Raul’s seem a little bit less impressive as time has gone by, but he will always occupy a very special place in the hearts of every Madridista.

2. Kylian Mbappe | 18 years, 64 days

AS Monaco (v Manchester City), 2016/17

Mbappe is only 20 years old but he’s already achieved so much. It’s scary to think how good he’ll be in a few years.

The forward has won three Ligue 1 titles and the World Cup with France, along with a host of major individual honours.

It’ll be a huge shock if he doesn’t win the Ballon d’Or at some point during his career.

1. Lionel Messi | 18 years, 132 days

Barcelona (v Panathinaikos), 2005/06

Look who it is.

Messi is obviously the best player on this list. He’s arguably the greatest footballer of all time.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner was destined for greatness from a very early age and his first Champions League goal back in November 2005 was a sign of things to come.

The Argentine forward has scored 113 more goals in the competition since then and will probably end his illustrious career with at least 150 to his name.

Most of these players have gone on to enjoy very good careers in football, which is encouraging news for Ansu Fati.

But he only needs to look at Bojan to realise that, at this point in his career, nothing is assured.

If he continues to work hard and act professional – just like Messi, Mbappe, Raul and others on this list – then there’s no reason why he won’t fulfil his huge potential.

News Now - Sport News