Most goals all-time at the World Cup: Which players and nations have scored the most times in competition history?

Scoring a goal at the World Cup is one of the highest achievements a footballer can accomplish in his career.

Whether it’s a scuffed finish from six yards out or a stunning volley from 30, every goal holds a special place in World Cup history.

But which player has scored the most goals in a single World Cup or which nation has scored the most competitive goals in history?

Which player has scored the most goals in the World Cup in total?

Having played in four different editions of the World Cup, Germany’s Miroslav Klose currently holds the record for the most goals scored in the competition’s history.

The deadly striker has scored 16 times in the 2002, 2006, 2010 and 2014 tournaments combined, averaging 0.67 goals per game.

Miroslav Klose Germany 2014

Partly thanks to his goalscoring prowess, Germany lifted the trophy in 2014 with the help of Klose. The other three tournaments he has participated in have seen the European nation finish second in 2002 and third place twice in 2006 and 2010.

List of players with 10 or more World Cup goals

Player Nation Goals Tournaments
Miroslav Klose Germany 16 2002, 2006, 2010, 2014
Ronaldo Brazil 15 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006
Gerd Muller Germany 14 1970, 1974
Just Fountain France 13 1958
Pele Brazil 12 1958, 1962, 1966, 1970
Sandor Kocsis Hungary 11 1954
Jurgen Klinsmann Germany 11 1990, 1994, 1998
Helmut Rahn Germany ten 1954, 1958
Gary Linekar England ten 1986, 1990
Gabriel Batistuta Argentina ten 1994, 1998, 2002
Teofilo Cubillas Peru ten 1970, 1974, 1982
Thomas Muller Germany ten 2010, 2014, 2018
Grzegorz Lato Poland ten 1974, 1978, 1982

Which nation has scored the most World Cup goals overall?

Given that they remain the only international football team in history to have appeared in all editions of the World Cup to date, it may come as no surprise that Brazil are the top scorers in the World Cup history.

From his first goal scored by Preguinho in a 2-1 loss to Yugoslavia in July 1930, to his last scored by Renato Augusto in a 2-1 quarter-final loss to Belgium in the World Cup 2018, the Seleção scored a grand total of 229 tournament goals.

Ronaldinho Brazil

Legendary Brazilian striker Ronaldo remains their top scorer in World Cup finals, scoring a total of 15 goals in the 1998, 2002 and 2006 editions.

At the other end of the pitch, Germany hold the dubious honor of having conceded the most goals in World Cup history. At this stage, Die Mannschaft have conceded a total of 125 goals in 19 tournaments.

Which player has scored the most goals in a single World Cup tournament?

One of the most gifted finishers in football history, Frenchman Just Fontaine currently holds the record for most goals scored in a single edition of the World Cup.

The famous Reims and Nice striker scored 13 goals in the 1958 World Cup which was held in Sweden for the first and only time.

His goal started with a famous hat-trick in a 7-3 demolition of Paraguay in his country’s opening group stage game and ended in a 5-2 semi-final loss to Brazil. .

More remarkably, the 1958 World Cup was the only edition of the famous competition in which Fontaine participated due to his early retirement from the sport aged just 28.

Which country has scored the most goals in a single World Cup tournament?

The 1954 World Cup in Switzerland proved to be one of the most exciting to date as 5.38 goals were scored on average per game during the tournament.

As a result, the record for most goals scored in a single tournament by a nation was achieved in this edition when Hungary scored a barely believable 27 goals in just five matches.

The European side began their campaign by recording a mammoth 9-0 victory over South Korea before beating West Germany 8-3 in their next outing. Ferenc Puskás & co went on to defeat Brazil and Uruguay four times to reach the final, but ironically lost 3-2 to West Germany in the showpiece event.

The 1954 World Cup also saw South Korea concede 16 times, the record amount of any nation in a single tournament. Worse still, the Asian nation only played twice due to the competition’s old format!

How many goals have been scored in total in World Cup tournaments?

In the previous 21 editions of the FIFA World Cup, 2,548 goals were scored in 900 matches.

This equates to an average of 2.83 strikes per game throughout the competition’s history.

The 1998 and 2014 editions of the World Cup saw the highest number of goals scored, 171 strikes in total, as the entertainment remained endless for football fans around the world.

List of World Cup Golden Boot winners by year

Year Player Nation Number of goals
1930 Guillermo Stabile Argentina 8
1934 Oldrich Nejedley Czechoslovakia 5
1938 Leonidas Brazil seven
1950 ademir Brazil 8
1954 Sandor Kocsis Hungary 11
1958 Just Fountain France 13
1962 Florian Albert Hungary 4
1966 Eusebio Portugal 9
1970 Gerd Muller West Germany ten
1974 Grzegorz Lato Poland seven
1978 Mario Kempes Argentina 6
1982 Paul Rossi Italy 6
1986 Gary Lineker England 6
1990 Salvatore Schillaci Italy 6
1994 Oleg Salenko Russia 6
1998 Davor Sucker Croatia 6
2002 Ronaldo Brazil 8
2006 Miroslav Klose Germany 5
2010 Thomas Muller Germany 5
2014 James Rodriguez Colombia 6
2018 Harry Kane England 6

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