Mon 20 December 2021 | 0:29

Most goals scored in a calendar year

As Robert Lewandowski scored his 69th goal of the year in the Bayern Munich 4-0 victory over Wolfsburg, he levelled Cristiano Ronaldo's tally, taking a spot among the players with the most goals scored in a calendar year. Let's dig deep to find out who else is included on the list.

Bayern Munich's talisman, Lewandowski, put away the final goal in the club's 4-0 triumph over VFL Wolfsburg on Friday night in an amazing acrobatic spectacle.

By scoring this goal in the last match of the calendar year 2021, he racked up his 69th strike of the year so as to match Cristiano Ronaldo's record, which the five-time Ballon d'Or winner had established in 2013 while capping for La Liga giants Real Madrid.

That is to say, this tally which is

Lewandowski's most goals in a calendar year,

landed him the joint second spot in the list of most goals scored in a calendar year across all competitions by active players.

But Lionel Messi who most recently has been dubbed as the

Most Ballon d'Or winners in football history

 officially remains on the top of the Most goals scored in a calendar year by anchoring 91 goals to his name in 2012.

However, when it comes to the overall most goals scored in a calendar year, encompassing current and former football giants, Messi officially leads the list with the names of Germany's Gerd Muller, legendary Pele, Romario and Zico positioned ahead of Lewandowski and Ronaldo in the list.

Here is an overview of the players with the most goals scored in one calendar year:

Although taking a spot among such giants, is nothing short of amazing, this was not the only mind-blowing feat the Poland striker has made in the final game against Wolfsburg.

In other words, even more amazingly his total in the Bundesliga in a calendar year has gone beyond Gerd Müller’s total with 42 goals since 1972.

He actually put away 41 goals this season, which is 13 more than anyone else in the league. With his results, Bayern has an explosive league season, smashing Borussia Dortmund by 13 points in the


standings as they are six points ahead of Dortmund at the top this season.

Here is the list of the most Bundesliga goals scored in a calendar year:

  • Lewandowski 2021 - 43

  • Gerd Müller 1972 - 42

  • Dieter Müller 1977 - 39

  • Gerd Müller 1976 - 36

  • Gerd Müller 1968 - 35

It goes without saying that in the 2020-21 Bundesliga season, Lewandowski had shattered another record of Gerd, pilling up a total of 41 goals in the league campaign, exceeding the Germany legend's tally of 40

Most goals scored in a calendar year in football history

Here we would delve into everything there is to know in regard to the list of the Most goals scored in a calendar year in football history.

Cristiano Ronaldo (69 goals, 2013)

It is no wonder to see the current Manchester United forward and the Portugal national team captain, who is widely revered as one of the best players in the world, take a position among the players with the

most goals scored in a calendar year.

The winner of the five Ballon d'Or awards and four European Golden Shoes racked up the number of 69 goals scored in 2013 following breakthrough seasons in 2011 and 2012.

While he started the year by scoring 20 league goals, consisting of two hat-tricks, unfortunately, his club side, Real Madrid was eliminated by Borussia Dortmund in the semis of the Champions League, yet, he could put away 6 knockout-stage goals.

Moreover, in the first half of the 2013-14 season, although he went without a goal in the first two games, he managed to net 18 league goals to finish the year.

While he enjoyed another strong start to his Champions League campaign, netting eight group-stage goals, he even went on to score a Copa del Rey hat-trick and two more with his national side, so as to score for Portugal ten times in his ten caps for them.

These ten goals as well as the 59 goals he scored for his club

Real Madrid

in his 50 appearances, led him to close a career-best year with an excellent tally of 69 goals.

These were enough to earn him a place among the players with the most goals scored in a calendar year, while he also crowned his second Ballon d'Or title that year and his first since joining Real Madrid.

While he also provided 14 assists for his club and the national side, he had undoubtedly a blistering year in 2013 making it to be the best year of his career.

Robert Lewandowski (69, 2021)

Lewandowski is held in the highest esteem for his successful feats in Bundesliga history as he has racked up more than a staggering 500 senior career goals for club and country.

It seems that 2021 is the Polish striker's best career year so far, landing him a spot among the players with the Most goals scored in a calendar year for his 69 goals bagged for Poland and Bayern Munich, which is Lewandowski's most goals in a calendar year.

After that he failed to pick up the prestigious Ballon d’Or award which he utterly was deserved, ending up losing out to Lionel Messi earlier this month, he did not let disappointment descend on him and went on to shine ever more brightly in this season.

In other words, when he terrifically netted the last goal in his club's 4-0 victory over VFL Wolfsburg, he made his league goal tally reach the whooping number of 18 and established the record of the most goals in the calendar year 2021.

Even the whole Wolfsburg team has not racked up such an amazing number of goals. After all, the talisman has a famous insatiable desire to score against Wolfsburg, having scored 23 goals in 20 previous Bundesliga games against them.


most goals in the calendar year 2021

, is consisted of his 43 goals scored in the Bundesliga in 2021 (18 this season and 24 last season), coupled with his 11 Champions League goals (2 last season and nine this season), as well as two goals per DFB-Pokal game and 13 international Poland which includes three goals in

Euro 2020

, just to reach the

most goals in a calendar year by Ronaldo


Not to mention that apart from his most goals in the calendar year 2021, Lewandowski's 43rd strike in Bundesliga this year, has cemented his place ahead of the legendary Gerd Muller in the list of most goals scored within a single calendar year in the Bundesliga.

Zico (72 goals, 1979)

The most goals in a calendar year by Ronaldo and now by


has not yet gone beyond the number of 72 goals scored by Zico in 1979.

After all, the Brazilian former attacking midfielder, who is widely revered as "White Pelé", is undoubtedly considered to be among the world's best players of the late 1970s and early 1980s.

While it is to be said that he is the player who scored the most goals from direct free-kicks, with 101 goals, it is of little surprise to see him being included among the record holders for the most goals in a calendar year.

Except for the two seasons he spent in Italy with Udinese, between 1983 and 1985, he spent almost all of his football career with the side from Rio de Janeiro, Flamengo.

It was with them that he underwent one of the most impressive years in modern football history, notching up 72 goals in less than 60 games.

Had he had not missed two months of the season through injury between September and November and had played the full season, his goal tally would be a lot more than that.

Be that as it may, this record is spectacular enough by its own term, since he had set it by scoring several hattricks and multiple goals in single games so as to grab the 7th spot goalscorers of the year.

Pelé (72 goals, 1965)

Being called the greatest player of all time by FIFA, he was among the most successful and famous sports figures of the 20th century.

While he was honoured to be one of the four players scored in four separate World Cup tournaments, in 2000, The King was voted World Player of the Century by the International Federation of Football History & Statistics and was one of the two joint winners of the FIFA Player of the Century.

The number of his 1,279 goals in 1,363 games, encompassing friendlies, which is recognised as a

Guinness World Record

, speaks volumes about the presentiment of his place among the goalscorers of the year.

Unlike any other giants on the list, he established the record of the most goals scored in a calendar year, not once but twice both of them occurring during the time he was a dominant force in the 1960s and 1970s.

This spot is allocated to his record of 72 goals scored in 1965 as he scored 9 goals for his national side, Brazil and the remaining for his club side Santos and other friendly games.

Romário (72 goals, 2000)

As one of the greatest players of all time,


is widely known for the mind-blowing feat he made for Brazil in their 1994 FIFA World Cup triumph, where he received the Golden Ball as the player of the tournament.

While he was elected to the FIFA World Cup Dream Team in 2002, he was included in the FIFA 100 list of the world's greatest living players in 2004.

As he scored 55 goals in his 70 caps for Brazil, he has become the fourth-highest goalscorer for his national team, behind just Pelé, Neymar and Ronaldo.

Not to mention that he has taken the third spot on the all-time list of the Brazilian league's top scorers with 155 goals, being also the seventh-highest goalscorer in the history of football with 780 goals in 1000 official games.

With such high scoring records anchored to his name, our list of the most goals scored in a calendar year would be incomplete without his presence.

While in the second half of his career Romário featured in clubs within the city of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, he won the Brazilian league title with CR Vasco da Gama in 2000 in which he became the goalscorer of the year while he even went on to become top scorer three times in the league.

Whereas he also led them to grab Copa Merscour, he made his goal tally reach the number of 72, while ha capped for his national side Brazil and his club Vasco da Game in 2000.

Pelé (75 goals, 1958)

Being widely regarded as the greatest football player of all time, the Brazilian is currently the all-time top goalscorer for his national side, scoring more than 70 goals for them while 12 of those goals were scored in his 14

World Cup


From here you might have taken the hint that there is no way that he would be excluded from the list of the

goalscorers of the year

, in as much as the year he helped his national side grab their first-ever World Cup which was 1958, turned out to be one of his best career years.

Precisely as saying, it suffices to mention that just at the age of 17 years old, he made his international debut at 1958 World Cup in Sweden in which after that he scored his first goal of the competition in the quarterfinal against Wales, he went on to score a hat trick in the semifinal against the second-best team in the tournament so as to leave the French team quite dumbfounded at their failure to stop just a youngster.

Moreover, it was in 1958 that he helped his club side Santos achieve their first of ten Campeonato Paulista too, while he went on to rack up 75 goals for his club and national side so as to exceed the record of the most goals in a calendar year by Ronaldo, Lewandowski, Zico and Romário, one more time.

Gerd Müller (85 goals, 1972)

The nation's Bomber is highly regarded as one of the greatest goalscorers in the history of the sport, to the point that he even held the all-time goal-scoring record in the World Cup with 14 goals for 32 years.

But apart from all of his breathtaking feats, what has landed him a spot among the goal scorers of the year, specifically is his explosive performance in 1972.

Strictly speaking, this year he won the UEFA European Championship so as to become the top goalscorer, ending up scoring two goals in the final.

While he hit 42 Bundesliga goals in 34 outings to fire Bayern Munich to the German title in 1971-72, with the goals scored for Bayern Munich and his national side West Germany in 1972, he could establish the record of the

most goals scored in a calendar year

, by scoring 85 goals in his 60 appearances.

He held this record for almost 40 years until 2012 that

the most goals in a calendar year by Messi

which was 91 goals, overshadowed


's astonishing record.

Lionel Messi (91 goals, 2012)

In 2012, the 25-year-old Lionel Messi, most probably made the best-ever single-year performance by any player in the history of the game, when he racked up a staggering 91 goals for Club Barcelona and his country Argentine, smashing Gerd Müller 85 goals established in 1972.

The most goals in a calendar year by


, came just in 69 matches for club and country, as an average of one goal every 66 minutes he was on the pitch.

69 of this tally was scored for


which is consisted of 13 goals in 12 Champions League matches, 5 goals in 8 Copa del Rey games, 2 goals in 2 Supercopa matches and a  terrific 59 goals in 38 league appearances which is an astonishing 1.553 goals per game in La Liga.

Among a number of world-class feats of Messi in 2012, there is one particularly outstanding match. It was the Champions League last-16 clash against Bayer Leverkusen at the Camp Nou, in which Messi put away an impressive five goals in a 7-1.

It saw him earn his second 10/10 from LIE quipe, so as to become the only player who scored two 10/10 from the French newspaper.

Moreover, as Barca finished second to Real Madrid in the league, as they were knocked out by Chelsea in the semi-finals of the Champions League during the 2011/12 campaign, almost he did not crown any remarkable trophies neither for his club nor for his country in 2012.

Be that as it may, in the light of his blistering exploits that year, he lifted one more Ballon d’Or award in 2012, becoming the first player to win four consecutive Ballon d'Or awards so as to let his fans fully celebrate 2012 for the most goals in a calendar year by Messi.

Godfrey Chitalu (116 goals, 1972)

As the Argentine star, Lionel Messi smashed the world record of Gerd Müller's most goals scored in a calendar year, he received the utmost approbation by football fans across the world.

But much to your consternation, this excellent record in 2012, might be a shere mirage in as much as the Zambian Godfrey Chitalu, who was voted Zambian footballer of the year five times, scored a lot more than 91 goals netted by Messi.

That is to say, Chitalu actually notched up 116 goals in 1972 so as to be the record holder of the most goals scored in a career year.

In other words, the Zambian legendary top scorer, who was undoubtedly one of the greatest


footballers ever, featured in nearly every game of his club side Kabwe Warriors in 1972.

But when it comes to FIFA's perspective, their spokesman announced that an official FIFA world record had never existed for the Godfrey Chitalu case, since they never kept track of domestic competitions, a decision that has likely led them to become immune to the public anger.

Nevertheless, the brilliant exhibition of Chitalu in 1972, by no means would be igonerd, making his presence binding in our list of the

most goals scored in a calendar year



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source: SportMob

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