Pele, Ronaldo, Lewandowski: Who is the greatest striker in football history?


Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have rewritten the rules when it comes to goalscoring.

Many years ago, one goal every two matches was a decent ratio.

That was until the two superstars came along and decided they must score every single match on average.

However, despite their ridiculous numbers, you can’t really pigeonhole either player as a ‘striker’.

They are far more than that.

Cristiano Ronaldo spent much of his career playing off the left wing, while Messi is more of a playmaker than a striker despite his goalscoring ability.


So, if they’re not classed as ‘strikers’ who are the best ‘strikers’ to have ever played the game?

Well, 90min decided to have a go at ranking the 30 greatest players to have ever played that position.

We’re sure their rankings won’t cause too much outrage…

30. Hernan Crespo

29. Zlatan Ibrahimovic

28. Andriy Shevchenko

27. Samuel Eto'o

26. Karim Benzema


25. Ian Rush

24. Luis Suarez

23. Alan Shearer

22. Josef Bican

21. Emilio Butragueno


20. Paolo Rossi

19. Gabriel Batistuta

18. Jimmy Greaves

17. Raul

16. John Charles


15. Thierry Henry

14. George Weah

13. Gunnar Nordahl

12. Sandor Kocsis

11. Karl-Heinz Rummenigge


10. Giuseppe Meazza

9. Robert Lewandowski

8. Romario

7. Marco van Basten

6. Alfredo di Stefano


5. Ferenc Puskas

4. Eusebio

3. Gerd Muller

2. Ronaldo

1. Pele


So, Pele is the greatest striker of all time.

It seems there can’t be too many arguments there with some even suggesting he’s the greatest to have ever played the game in any position.

His compatriot, Ronaldo, is in second with German Gerd Muller in third.

The legends Eusebio and Ferenc Puskas make up the top five.

One current striker has managed to make the top 10 in the form of Robert Lewandowski.


The Pole actually broke Muller’s record of most goals in a Bundesliga season with 41 this season.

In terms of more modern-day players, Arsenal legend Thierry Henry finds himself in 15th, while Raul is two places behind him.

Premier League record goalscorer, Alan Shearer, is 22nd in the list with recent La Liga winner Luis Suarez just behind him.

Karim Benzema, who will be looking to lead France to Euro 2020 glory this summer, is 26th with AC Milan’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic 29th.

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