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Russian Premier League Top Scorers of All Time

Mon 16 May 2022 | 4:30

Although not among top European leagues, Russian Premier League has still its importance. It is actually the top tier of Russian football among all the three running leagues in the country. In this post, we are to see who Russian Premier League top scorers of all time are.

Russian Premier League teams

are actually 16 in number with the best of them being Zenit Saint Petersburg, CSKA Moscow, and Lokomotiv Moscow in terms of their championships. Of course, there are two other Russian Premier League teams, namely Spartak Moscow and Rubin Kazan, with one and two championships, respectively, but the rest of Russian Premier League teams that are 11 in number have won no championships at least up until this date.

And some players on the list of Russian Premier League top scorers of all time are actually among the top Russian Premier League players, like for example, Artem Dzyuba who also tops the list of all-time Russian Premier League top scorers. But of course, there are also other top Russian Premier League players some of them being defenders or midfielders who should not be on the list of Russian Premier League top scorers of all time considering their roles, as they are actually not.

There might also be the question who the top Russian players in Premier League are - we mean the English Premier League. Well, before anything else, we should say that there are no players on the list of Russian Premier League top scorers of all time who are among the top former or current Russian players in Premier League, but of course, there have been top Russian footballers like Andrey Arshavin or Andrei Kanchelskis who are indeed considered as top former Russian players in Premier League - the former played for Arsenal and the latter for Manchester United and Everton sometime during his career.

A List of Russian Premier League Top Scorers of All Time

The list of Russian Premier League top scorers of all time starts with the top Russian scorer, Artem Dzyuba, but let’s see which other footballers are on the list.

Artem Dzyuba (148 Goals)

Not only at the top of the list of Russian Premier League top scorers of all time but also among top

Russian Premier League players

, Artem Dzyuba is one of the only two active players on the list and that means he will, for sure, add to his league goals in the remaining years of his career making his top position on the list even firmer. Unlike Andrey Arshavin, Andrei Kanchelskis or some other top Russian footballers who played sometime in the English Premier League during their careers,

Artem Dzyuba

has been playing in the Russian Premier League since the start of his career in 2006 and mainly for the two top Russian Premier League clubs, Spartak Moscow and Zenit Saint Petersburg, with some seasons in between having been loaned to other Russian clubs including Rostov for instance.

You cannot call Dzyuba a prolific scorer at least based on the goals he has scored in his league appearances: 148 goals in 387 appearances which actually gets him a goal-to-appearance ratio of 0.38 meaning that he has scored almost 2 goals (exactly 1.9) in every five appearances that he has made within the Russian Premier League, yet with that number of goals, he’s still Russian Premier League top scorer of all time. If you would like to know, Dzyuba has scored a total of 186 goals in 500 appearances across all competitions which gets him almost the same goal-to-appearance ratio (0.37). He has also provided 86 assists and has received 30 yellow cards and one red card in all his league appearances.

It might be interesting for you to know that Dzyuba is not only the Russian Premier League top scorer of all time but also Russian national team all-time top scorer, of course jointly with Aleksandr Kerzhakov, with 30 goals. He has actually the highest international goal-to-appearance ratio among Russian national team all-time top scorers since he has scored his 30 international goals in 50 appearances which gets him a goal-to-appearance ratio of 0.55 meaning that he has scored around 1 goal (exactly 1.1) in every two of his international appearances. What we can say about Dzyuba’s goalscoring capabilities is that at least they have been more realized at international than league level based on the Russian footballer’s international and league goal-to-appearance ratios.

But back to Dzyuba’s performance in the Russian Premier League, we should say that he is indeed a prolific goalscorer! You’re quite right if you protest because we just mentioned that he has not been a prolific scorer. But the truth is that except for one club, namely Spartak Moscow, for whom Dzyuba scored only 26 goals in 126 appearances - one goal in every five appearances averagely, he has scored almost one goal in every 2 appearances that he has made for the other clubs he has served to this date averagely. That is actually 122 goals in 262 appearances from which 178 appearances have been made for Zenit Saint Petersburg and 85 goals has been scored for the same club.

So, we’d better call Dzyuba a prolific goalscorer. It should also be mentioned here that Dzyuba has become the Russina Premier League top scorer in two consecutive seasons of 2019-20 and 2020-21 with 17 and 20 goals, respectively. He’s not a very highly-decorated footballer, especially concerning his club trophies, but he has some individual honors to his name including what was just mentioned about his becoming the Russian Premier League top scorer.

Oleg Veretennikov (140 Goals)

The second top footballer on the list of

Russian Premier League top scorers of all time

, Oleg Veretennikov, has a completely different story than Russian Premier League top scorer of all time, Artem Dzyuba. He served more than 10 clubs during his career but only three of them played in the Russian Premier League, namely PFC Sokol, SC Rotor Volgograd, and FC Ural Yekaterinburg also known as Uralmash. The rest of the clubs he served during his career were either non-Russian or didn’t play in the Russian Premier League.

Well, Veretennikov scored a total of 262 league goals during his career from which 140 (53%) took place within the Russian Premier League and were enough to make him the second

Russian Premier League

top scorer of all time. He actually scored that many goals (140) in 262 appearances which gets him a goal-to-appearance ratio of 0.53 meaning that he scored around one goal (exactly 1.06) in every 2 appearances that he made within the Russian Premier League. That ratio is actually the highest on the list, even higher than that of Artem Dzyuba. In fact, if we were to sort the list based on goal-to-appearance ratio, then Veretennikov would surely top the list.

Veretennikov also became the Russian Premier League top scorer in three seasons, namely in 1995, 1997, and 1998 seasons, with 25, 22, and 22 goals, respectively; a record that’s not been broken yet. And within this record there is also another record! No other Russian footballer has ever scored 25 goals in a single season within the Russian Premier League; what actually Veretennikov did in 1995 season of the top Russian league. He is also the only Russian footballer, of course, alongside his fellowman, Victor Panchenko, who managed to score 5 goals in a single league match within the Russian league system; not specifically within the Russian Premier League, but in the FNL2 league which is actually the second tier of Russian football league system and against

FC Shinnik Yaroslavl

. All that said, you might think that Veretennikov was actually a forward, but wrong! He was a midfielder and yet with such goalscoring records. However, despite his brilliance within club football, Veretennikov made only 4 appearances for the Russian national team and in unimportant matches where he didn’t score a single goal.

Aleksandr Kerzhakov (139 Goals)

Described as a forward “who likes to drop deep to link with the midfield and create spaces for his teammates” by pundits, Aleksandr Kerzhakov is a 39-year-old retired Russian forward who served the top Russian club, Zenit Saint Petersburg, for more than two third of his career; actually for 12 years out of his 15-year career and in two time periods: Once at the start of his career and from 2001 to 2006 and another time from 2010 to 2017. Although they call Kerzhakov a prolific goalscorer, the truth is that he was a prolific goalscorer neither within Russian Premier League nor at club level. He actually scored 139 goals in 340 appearances within the Russian Premier League and 203 goals in 508 appearances at club level which means he scored 2 goals in every 5 appearances in both cases.

Kerzhakov was not also a prolific scorer at international level since he scored his 30 international goals in 90 appearances, but still with that number of goals he’s Russia’s top scorer of all time jointly with Artem Dzyuba, of course, currently considering the fact that Dzyuba is not still retried and can add to his international goals becoming Russia’s only top scorer ever. It might be interesting for you to know that Kerzhakov was actually Russia’s lone top scorer of all time for some time after he scored his 30th international goal in 2014 surpassing Vladimir Beschastnykh’s record for most goals scored for the Russian national team. He actually took part in 2002 and 2014 World Cups and 2004 and 2012 editions of Euro, but never managed to advance beyond the group stage in any of these competitions with the Russian national team. Kerzhakov is not a highly-decorated footballer with his 11 club trophies, however, he managed to become the Russian Premier League top scorer once in 2004 where he managed to score 18 goals in his 29 league appearances.

Dmitri Kirichenko (129 Goals)

Having played almost all his career for Russian clubs, Dmitri Kirichenko is a 45-year-old retired Russian forward who although was not a prolific goalscorer, became the Russian Premier League top scorer in two seasons; actually in 2002 where he managed to score 15 goals in 26 appearances for

CSKA Moscow

and in 2005 where he scored 14 goals in in 26 appearances for FC Moscow. He also became UEFA Intertoto Cup top scorer in 2008 with 5 goals scored in the competition.

Anyhow, as mentioned above, Kirichenko was not a prolific goalscorer at any level. That you can easily see from his stats: He actually scored 129 goals in 377 appearances within the Russian Premier League, 188 goals in 520 appearances at club level and 4 goals in 12 appearances at international level which, in general, means he scored around 1.1 goals in every 3 appearances during his career both at club and international level. It might be interesting for you to know that Kirichenko is the holder of the record for the quickest goal ever scored in the history of UEFA Euro. He actually scored a goal against Greece in Euro 2004 just two seconds after the start of the game!

Dmitri Loskov (120 Goals)

The second midfielder on the list of Russian Premier League top scorers of all time, Dmitri Loskov is a 48-year-old retired Russian footballer who was actually known for his playmaking abilities during late 1990s and early 2000s. He was also a top set-piece taker with powerful stingy shots and a two-footed player with a wide range of passing. That’s what made him a perfect midfielder, but ending up on the list of Russian Premier League top scorers of all time is another prize for him. And that’s not all; he also became the Russian Premier League top scorer in 2000 and 2003 seasons with the 15 and 14 goals he scored for Lokomotiv Moscow.

Another thing to mention about Dmitri Loskov is that he played for almost all his career in the Russian Premier League; in fact, from the top Russian league launch in 1992 up until 2013 that his career ended. And for that one season before 1992 - we mean 1991 season - he played in the Soviet First League and for the same team, FC Rostov. Loskov scored a total of 120 goals in his 453 appearances within the Russian Premier League which means he scored almost one goal (exactly 0.92) in every 4 appearances that he made within the top Russian league - not bad for a midfielder.

He served the top Russian club,

Lokomotiv Moscow

, for a major part of his career; actually for 13 years out of his 22-year career during which he managed to score 99 goals for them only at league level. He also made 25 appearances and scored 2 goals for the Russian national team sometime between 2000 and 2007. It might be interesting for you to know that with 453 appearances within the Russian Premier League, Loskov held the record for most appearances within the top Russian league for some time before his record was broken by his fellowman, Sergei Semak.

Roman Pavlyuchenko (104 Goals)

Among the top former

Russian players in Premier League

, Roman Pavlyuchenko is actually the only footballer on the list to have served the top Premier League club, Tottenham Hotspur, some time during his career; actually for four years between 2008 and 2012 during which he managed to score 42 goals in 113 appearances for them across all competitions. That gets him a goal-to-appearance ratio of 0.37 and means that he scored 1.11 goals in every 3 appearances for them averagely. Within the Russian Premier League, Pavlyuchenko almost got the same goal-to-appearance ratio with the 104 goals that he scored in 309 appearances.

If you would like to know, it was actually with Spartak Moscow that Pavlyuchenko bloomed. He not only scored 69 of his 104 Russian Premier League goals for them but also became the Russian league top scorer in 2006 and 2007 with 18 and 14 goals, respectively, while he was with them. And Spartak Moscow is actually the only club that Pavlyuchenko got his best goal-to-appearance ratio with in comparison to the same ratio he got with other clubs: Almost 0.5 which comes from the 69 goals he scored for them in 141 league appearances between 2003 and 2008. Pavlyuchenko is not at all a highly or even moderately decorated footballer since he only won 2 club trophies during his 22-year career, but it should also be mentioned here that while with Tottenham, he managed to become the Football League Cup top scorer in 2008-09 season with 6 goals, of course, jointly with Nathan Ellington of Derby County.

Sergei Semak (102 Goals)

Yet another midfielder on the list of

Russian Premier League top scorers of all time

, Sergei Semak is a 46-year-old retired Russian footballer who played for eight clubs during his career including the top French club, PSG, scoring 112 goals in his 532 appearances for them at league level - 1.05 goals in every 5 appearances averagely. He actually served the top Russian club, CSKA Moscow, for almost the half of his career and also scored more than half of his club career goals (69) for them. Semak also served the Russian national team sometime between 1997 and 2010 making 65 appearances and scoring 4 goals for them in the process.

Within the Russian Premier League Semak made a total of 456 appearances which actually has made him the third footballer with most appearances within the top Russian league, and as you see, he scored 102 goals in his 456 appearances getting almost the same goal-to-appearance ratio as his club one. During his club career, Semak won a few club trophies with the Russian clubs he served including four Russian Premier League titles, and also a French Cup in 2006 with PSG. It might be interesting for you to know that the retired Russian footballer came 8 times on the list of 33 best football players of the Russian Premier League between 1997 and 2009. He’s the current manager of the Russian club,

Zenit Saint Petersburg

, and has won six club trophies with them to this date including four consecutive Russian Premier League titles from 2018 to 2022. Semak is actually the last footballer on the list to have scored more than 100 goals within the Russian Premier League and also the one on the list with the lowest Russian Premier League goal-to-appearance ratio (0.22).

Andrey Tikhonov (98 Goals)

Also a midfielder on the list of Russian Premier League top scorers of all time, Andrey Tikhonov is a 51-year-old retired Russian footballer who, except for the Israeli club,

Maccabi Tel Aviv

, for whom he only made 8 appearances, served only Russian clubs during his career making a total of 570 appearances and scoring 231 goals for them in the process - 2 goals in every 5 appearances averagely, and from all these appearances and goals 346 appearances and 98 goals actually took place within the Russian Premier League - 1.12 goals in every 4 appearances averagely.

Tikhonov also served the Russian national team sometime between 1996 and 2000 making 29 appearances and scoring one goal for them in the process. Maybe it’s interesting for you to know that Tikhonov held the record for most goals scored in a single match within the Russian football with the 8 goals he scored for Spartak-d Moscow in a Russian Second Division match against FC Rekord Aleksandrov where he actually scored all the match goals leading his team to an 8-0 victory. He was also named Russian First Division best player in 2005 and 2010 and became CIS Cup top scorer in 1997 jointly with the top Ukrainian footballer, Andriy Shevchenko, with 6 goals.

Igor Semshov (98 Goals)

The footballer with the second lowest Russian Premier League goal-to-appearance ratio on the list (0.23), Igor Semshov is a 44-year-old retired Russian midfielder who managed to score 98 goals in 433 appearances within the Russian Premier League getting the above-mentioned goal-to-appearance ratio of 0.23. Semshov also only served Russian clubs during his career with

Torpedo Moscow

being the club he served the most; actually for seven years between 1998 and 2005 during which he scored 54 goals in 216 appearances for them which is the most number of goals he scored and the most number of appearances he made for a single club during his career.

It should also be mentioned here that all the clubs he served during his career competed in Russian Premier League, so his club appearances and goals actually equal his goals and appearances within the Russian Premier League. Semshov also served the Russian national team sometime between 2002 and 2012 taking part in 2002 FIFA World Cup and the 2004, 2008, and 2012 editions of Euro never earning a real achievement with them. He also never scored in any of these competitions and in Euro 2012 was actually sidelined in all the three matches that Russia played.

Fedor Smolov (93 Goals)

The second and the last active footballer on the list of

Russian Premier League top scorers of all time

, Fedor Smolov is a 32-year-old Russian forward who has, to this date, scored 93 goals in the Russian Premier League and in 272 appearances which gets him a goal-to-appearance ratio of 0.34 meaning that he has scored 1.02 goals in every 3 appearances within the top Russian league averagely. And since he’s active, currently playing for the Russian club, Dynamo Moscow, he will probably add to his goals and will improve his standing on the list of Russian Premier League all-time top scorers - just needs 6 more goals.

If you would like to know, Dynamo Moscow is the club

Smolov

has served the most to this date; actually for 7 years between 2007 and 2015 at the start of his career plus the time that has passed to this date from the start of 2022 season. The interesting fact here is that Smolov scored only 3 goals in his 68 appearances for the Russian club at the start of his career with five seasons out of the 8 seasons he served them being loaned to other clubs. He was indeed a prolific goalscorer as an under-aged player, but for the senior team he could not prove himself as one; what, of course, he has proved the opposite since his reuniting with the White Blues since the start of 2022 season: He has scored 4 goals in his 9 appearances for them to this date. But, you should also remember that his contract’s length is not more than 1.5 years plus an additional optional year which means his appearances and goals are not going to be much for the club unless he extends his contract’s length.

Smolov is not even a moderately-decorated footballer, however, he has managed to become the Russian Premier League top scorer in two consecutive seasons of 2015-16 and 2016-17 with 20 and 18 goals. He has also won two Russian Cups and one Russian Super Cup with Lokomotiv Moscow. Smolov has also been serving the Russian national team since 2012 making 45 appearances and scoring 16 goals for them in the process up until now - 1.05 goals in every three appearances averagely, but none of these goals have actually been scored in a World Cup or Euro finals despite the fact that the Russian forward was part of the Russian national team in 2018 World Cup and Euro 2016.

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