World Cup Top Goal Scorers All-Time

World Cup top goal scorers all-time: Complete list of Golden Boot winners in FIFA men’s tournament history The Golden Boot race for the competition’s top scorer is set to provide a fascinating sub-plot to the 2022 FIFA World Cup with Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo taking part in what looks set to be their final major tournament. The duo, who at 35 and 37 are both now firmly in the twilight of their careers, will be expected to be among the leading candidates to top the goalscoring charts in Qatar, as both bids to claim what has so far proved to be an elusive first World Cup trophy.

World Cup top goal scorers all-time
World Cup top goal scorers all-time

The pair have split the accolades as the best players of their generation, if not all time, for more than a decade, and they will head to the Middle East with Argentina and Portugal respectively bidding to once again steal the limelight. They will not be alone, however, with the likes of Brazil forward Neymar, France superstar Kylian Mbappe and Russia 2018 winner, England’s Harry Kane, all likely to be in the mix. 

It remains to be seen who does come out on top, but one thing is for sure: whichever player does will be etching their name into the illustrious World Cup history books

MORE: Every player that’s scored a World Cup hat-trick

World Cup Golden Boot winners all-time

The Golden Boot battle is always eagerly anticipated at the World Cup, with a curious record of no player has won it more than once in men’s football.

Two former winners will be looking to change that in Qatar, with Germany’s Thomas Muller and England captain Kane among the leading contenders.

TournamentGolden Boot winnerCountryGoals
Uruguay 1930Guillermo StabileArgentina8
Italy 1934Oldrich NejedlyCzechoslovakia5
France 1938LeonidasBrazil7
Brazil 1950AdemirBrazil8
Switzerland 1954Sandor KocsisHungary11
Sweden 1958Just FontaineFrance13
Chile 1962Valentin Ivanov,Jerkovic,
Drazan, Florian Albert, Leonel Sanchez,
Garrincha Vava
Brazil, Brazil, Chile, Hungary,
Yugoslavia, Soviet Union
England 1966EusebioPortugal9
Mexico 1970Gerd MullerWest Germany10
West Germany 1974Grzegorz LatoPoland7
Argentina 1978Mario KempesArgentina6
Spain 1982Paolo RossiItaly6
Mexico 1986Gary LinekerEngland6
Italy 1990Salvatore SchillaciItaly6
USA 1994Oleg Salenko, Hristo StoichkovRussia, Bulgaria6
France 1998Davor SukerCroatia6
South Korea/Japan 2002RonaldoBrazil 8
Germany 2006Miroslav KloseGermany5
South Africa 2010Thomas MullerGermany5
Brazil 2014James Rodriguez Colombia 6
Russia 2018Harry KaneEngland6

Players with the most goals in a single World Cup

Scoring more than 10 goals at a single tournament has proved a feat too far for any player since 1970, with the average dropping to six per tournament since the turn of the century.

RankName CountryTournamentGoals scored in a
single tournament
Overall World Cup
1Just FontaineFranceSweden 19581313
2Sandor KocsisHungarySwitzerland 19541111
3Gerd MullerWest GermanyMexico 19701014
4EusebioPortugalEngland 196699
5Guillermo StabileArgentinaUruguay 193088
5AdemirBrazilBrazil 195088
5Ronaldo Brazil Japan/South Korea 2002815
8LeonidasBrazilFrance 193878
8Grzegorz LatoPolandWest Germany 1974710

Players with the most goals in World Cup history

The World Cup top scorers list is dominated by European and South American hot-shots, with no player from outside those two continents featuring in the top 10.

Goals per game
1Miroslav KloseGermany16242002, 2006, 2010, and 20140.67
2RonaldoBrazil15191994*, 1998, 2002, 20060.79
3Gerd MullerWest Germany14131970, 19741.08
4Just FontaineFrance13619582.17
5PeleBrazil12141958, 1962, 1966, 19700.86
6Sandor KocsisHungary11519542.20
6Jurgen KlinsmannWest Germany/Germany11171990, 1994, 19980.65
8Helmut RahnWest Germany10101954, 19581.00
8Gary LinekerEngland10121986, 19900.83
8Gabriel BatistutaArgentina10121994, 1998, 20020.83
8Teofilo CubillasPeru10131970, 1978, 1982**0.77
8Thomas MullerGermany10162010, 2014, 2018**0.63
8Grzegorz LatoPoland10201974, 1978, 19820.50

Most goals scored in a World Cup match

The 1994 World Cup Golden Boot continued the pattern of back-to-back tournaments where they won the award by six wickets, with Russian star Oleg Salenko and Bulgarian icon Hristo Stoichkov sharing the award in the US.

However, the tournament still holds the record for most goals scored by one player in one game. Salenko netted five goals in Russia’s 6-1 Group B win over Cameroon in their final group stage match, but it was not enough to advance to the knockout stages.

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