Messi climbs among top scorers in international football history

World News

With Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo having recently added to their national team goal tallies, here are the 10 highest-scoring players in international football history!

Ronaldo and Messi are two of just four active players who feature among the 10 leading goalscorers in international football history, according to Transfermarkt

Scroll through the gallery above to see the 10 highest-scoring international footballers of all time!

The Argentine put five past European minnows Estonia during a friendly on 5 June, a feat that helped him climb above Hungarian legend Ferenc Puskas in the all-time top scorers chart.

The seven-time Ballon d'Or winner is now the fourth-highest scoring international player of all time with 86 goals for the Albiceleste, while the Real Madrid icon dropped down to fifth spot with his tally of 84.

Ronaldo, meanwhile, struck twice against Switzerland in the UEFA Nations League to add to his record tally for the Selecao, further extending his lead at the top of this ranking.

Despite having retired in the 1970s, Pele remains Brazil's greatest marksman with 77 goals, a record that places him 10th on the list.

Zambian icon Godfrey Chitalu occupies also features thanks to his 79 strikes in 79 matches for Chipolopolo, and maintains his position as the highest-scoring African in international football history.

Read: 'The president shuts up when Messi talks'

Perhaps surprisingly, the ranking is dominated by Middle Eastern footballers, including Iran's Ali Daei, who was the all-time leading scorer up until September 2021 when his milestone was surpassed by Ronaldo. 

United Arab Emirates striker Ali Mabkhout and India's Sunil Chhetri are the two other stars who are still active for their countries – you can see the full top 10 in the gallery above!

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