How does Erling Haaland’s Champions League record compare with Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappé?
The Manchester City striker took his tally in the competition to 34 in 26 games in his team’s win over Bayern Munich.
Manchester City striker Erling Haaland continues to be unplayable in the Champions League. The Norwegian forward scored once and provided an assist in his team’s 3-0 win in the first leg of their quarter-final tie against Bayern Munich. In total, the Premier League top scorer has netted 34 goals in his first 26 games in Europe’s elite-level competition. This season, he has already scored 11 times in seven matches, including five in an incredible 8-0 thrashing of RB Leipzig in the round of 16.
How many Champions League goals had Ronaldo and Messi scored after 26 games?
To put those numbers into some kind of perspective, let’s take a look at how the two greats of the modern game - Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi - had fared in the Champions League after the same number of matches.
The Portuguese is currently the competition’s top all-time goalscorer with 140 goals in 187 matches but had scored a grand total of zero goals in his first 26 appearances. Messi, meanwhile, had found the net on a respectable 13 occasions and has gone on to score 129 times in 163 games.
Haaland is also well ahead of anyone else when it comes to goals-per-game ratio. His 34 strikes in 26 matches work out at an average of 1.3 goals per game, with only Bayern legend Gerd Müller, who played in the competition between 1969 and 1977, when it was still known as the European Cup, anywhere near him. The Norwegian’s strike against the Bavarian drew him level on 34 with the iconic German forward, who averaged 0.97 goals per game during his time with the club. As for Ronaldo and Messi, their goals-per-game ratios come in at 0.75 and 0.79 respectively, both still hugely impressively...unless you compare them to Haaland.
Erling Haaland vs Kylian Mbappé in the Champions League
The former Borussia Dortmund frontman also comes out well on top in his duel with Kylian Mbappé to become the ‘new’ dominant goalscoring force in world soccer. The Frenchman, who is 19 months older, has played 61 Champions League matches, scoring 40 times (0.66 per game). In his first 26 appearances, he managed 10 goals (0.38).
Who will Haaland catch next?
The City striker seems to be well on his way to usurping Ronaldo at the top of the scoring charts, barring serious injury or some other unforeseen disaster. In recent weeks, he has already overtaken the tallies of Champions League legends Kaká (30), Luis Suarez (31) and Etoo (33). Wayne Rooney (34), Edinson Cavani (35), Ferenc Puskás (36) and Fernando Morientes (39), you’re up next.