Analysis

Which top scorers have the best minutes to goals ratio in Europe?

Erling Haaland has a goal every 19 minutes - but which players with ten or more goals boast the best ratios in Europe?  

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Erling Haaland’s having an alright season, isn’t he? 

After impressing in the Champions League for RB Salzburg, the blonde bombshell’s sent shockwaves around the world since signing for Borussia Dortmund. In just 136 Bundesliga minutes, he’s managed to rack up seven goals already - that’s one every 19 minutes of football. 

Frankly, 19 minutes a goal is astonishing. You can’t even get through an episode of Friends without Haaland scoring. If he continues at this rate, he’ll score 180 goals next season.

So that prompted us at FFT to ponder - who has the best minutes to goals ratio in Europe’s top five leagues right now? We chose those who have netted over ten goals - sorry, Erling - just so that anyone who’d scored a single goal off the bench wasn’t competing with the Messis and Ronaldos of this list.

We start with one of Haaland’s new teammates who has a goal every 136 minutes. Just a goal every 136!? Haaland has seven in that time… 

20. Marcus Reus

Minutes per goal: 136

League goals: 11

It’s perhaps no surprise that the perennially-crocked cult favourite Marco Reus hasn’t played every second of Dortmund’s Bundesliga campaign this season. But with BVB chasing the title, the captain is chipping in with goals here and there - when young Erling lets someone else score, of course.

At 136 minutes per strike, that’s a return of one every game and a half that Reus plays.

19. Lautaro Martinez

Minutes per goal: 136

League goals: 12

Lautaro Martinez of Inter Milan has exactly the same minutes-per-goal return as Marco Reus. The 22-year-old has shone for Antonio Conte’s side this term, leading the line alongside Belgian scoring genius Romelu Lukaku.

Martinez is as regular as clockwork for Argentina too, with a goal every other game. 

18. Mohamed Salah

Minutes per goal: 135

League goals: 14

At his first season at Liverpool, Mo Salah racked up a league goal every 91 minutes - statistically, only one additional minute of stoppage time could stop him scoring.

Salah has eased off on those numbers slightly but with 14 goals and six assists already this season, he’s still finding the net at a rapid rate. Quicker than Mane or Firmino, in fact.

17. Marcus Rashford

Minutes per goal: 134

League goals: 14

The big criticism of Marcus Rashford over the years has always been his consistency. Is he the type of striker to score you 20+ goals a season?

Well, provided he doesn’t get injured, the answer is yes. According to this season’s stats, Rashford would have to play 30 matches next season to hit that magical 20 goals. 

16. Jadon Sancho

Minutes per goal: 121

League goals: 12

One of the most exciting young talents, scoring and assisting for fun abroad, and he just happens to be English. What a time to be alive.

Jadon Sancho has 12 goals for Dortmund in 24 hours of German league football (not that he played it all for a day straight). It’s that kind of consistency that Raheem Sterling added to his game in the last couple of years - could Sancho become even better?

15. Romelu Lukaku 

Minutes per goal: 118

League goals: 16

Romelu Lukaku hit 100 goals in the Premier League at just 24 years old - a record age for an overseas player. At the rate he’s going, it’ll take fewer than four seasons for Inter to hit a century of Serie A goals. 

Big Rom wasn’t his usual self last season, averaging a goal every 177 minutes. That’s still not to be sniffed at though - some strikers would give a limb for that ratio.

14. Jamie Vardy

Minutes per goal: 118

League goals: 17

Leicester’s most impressive minutes-to-goals ratio this season may well be the strike every 10 minutes they managed away to Southampton, but Jamie Vardy’s not doing badly himself this season when it comes to finding the net.

The Fox in the box is top of the charts in the Premier League for goals and managed a run of eight matches in a row scoring. In fact, 118 minutes per goal is a better rate than the 130 that Vardy managed when he became a Premier League champion in 2016. 

13. Mauro Icardi

Minutes per goal: 107

League goals: 10

Despite it taking the pair of Romelu Lukaku and Lautaro Martinez to step up and replace iconic no. 9 Mauro Icardi, neither of them can better the Argentine’s record of a goal every 107 minutes.

Context is your friend, however. Icardi is now the focal point of a much flashier PSG side, complete with Neymar, Mbappe and Cavani. Still, one every 107 minutes is impressive. 

12. Luis Suarez

Minutes per goal: 116

League goals: 11

He’s unlikely to play another minute this season due to injury, but Luis Suarez has a phenomenal return for a 33-year-old in La Liga.

The Uruguayan’s goal every 116 minutes is outstanding really, but still not as impressive as in 2015-16, where he averaged over a goal a game and netted 40 in 35 La Liga matches. Consider too 2013-14, where he managed 31 in 33 for Liverpool. When you put it like that, maybe 11 goals in 17 appearances this season isn’t all that. 

11. Wissam Ben Yedder

Minutes per goal: 115

League goals: 15

The three words that still haunt Manchester United fans’ nightmares - no, not “Paul Pogba’s agent” - Wissam Ben Yedder is having quite the campaign for Monaco, leading the Ligue 1 golden boot race.

Netting every 115 minutes, the striker is averaging just under a goal every game and a half, though Monaco haven’t got much else firepower in the side. 

10. Lionel Messi

Minutes per goal: 103

League goals: 14

It turns out that Barcelona's Lionel Messi is really good at football.

Whilst this isn’t the Argentine’s greatest ever season for productivity, his record of a strike every 103 minutes is still fantastic for a player creeping up to his mid thirties. If every match had 13 minutes of added time - quite the caveat - he’d be scoring once a game. 

9. Neymar

Minutes per goal: 95

League goals: 13

It’s well-documented that placing Neymar into the French top tier was a little bit like fitting a great white shark into a modestly-sized goldfish bowl. A goal every 95 minutes in Ligue 1 comes as no surprise to anyone. 

The Brazilian play-actor has quite the record throughout his career - with 61 goals in just 102 internationals too, it’s not just club level that he keeps up his incredible strike rate. Although at that rate, it’ll take him around 1,600 matches to reach Pele’s career total of goals (according to Pele).

8. Kylian Mbappe

Minutes per goal: 89

League goals: 13

As already discussed, it’s not the most difficult gig in world football to be a goalscorer for Paris Saint-Germain. Still, someone’s gotta do it.

With so many stars to rotate and keep happy, it’s perhaps no surprise that the French World Cup winner has over a goal a game this season. Thomas Tuchel isn’t even keeping them all happy though, judging by Mbappe’s reaction to getting hooked off last week. 

7. Josip Ilicic

Minutes per goal: 89

League goals: 14

Atalanta were the surprise package in Serie A last term - and Josip Ilicic has continued where he left off this season. 

The Slovenian has played 18 matches this season and scored 14 goals. That’s an impressive return, and it also includes five assists in the league and a goal in Europe. Perhaps some of Europe’s big boys will come calling soon. 

6. Cristiano Ronaldo

Minutes per goal: 88

League goals: 19

Another of Europe’s big undiscovered gems, little-known Cristiano Ronaldo from Juventus is also having a smashing season in Italy. 

With 19 goals plundered this campaign, it’s clear CR7 wants that golden boot, which he missed out on last season to Fabio Quagliarella. Given that he often improves in the second half of seasons, he could have an astonishing record come May. 

5. Timo Werner

Minutes per goal: 85

League goals: 20

Julian Nagelsmann’s RB Leipzig are a team to be feared this season, and with a goal every 85 minutes, they have a striker to match.

Timo Werner is lightning quick and this season has refined his finishing even further. He might have looked like a fish out of water at the World Cup two years ago, but he’s been netting with clockwork regularity in Germany this term.

4. Robert Lewandowski

Minutes per goal: 81

League goals: 22

The only man to have bettered Werner’s Bundesliga haul, Robert Lewandowski is also scoring at a better rate than the Leipzig striker. He must be sick of the sight of him.

The Bayern frontman also has more Champions League goals than anyone else this season too. At the age of 31, he’s showing no signs of slowing down. 

3. Luis Muriel

Minutes per goal: 74

League goals: 12

One of the lesser-known names on the list, Luis Muriel is having a fantastic season at Atalanta, with 12 league goals already this season and one in the Champions League.

While a goal every 74 minutes suggests that he’s bound to score in any game he completes, he has 12 in 20 games. Not that that’s not a good tally. 

2. Sergio Aguero

Minutes per goal: 73

League goals: 16

Is there a record that Sergio Aguero doesn’t want?

The Manchester City legend may not have scored more Premier League goals than anyone else this season but with one every 73 minutes, he’s certainly making use of the time that Gabriel Jesus isn’t on the pitch. It’s amazing to think what his record may have been if he’d have taken the penalties that City have missed this season. 

1. Ciro Immobile

Minutes per goal: 73

League goals: 25

Perhaps a surprise number one, Ciro Immobile is having a barnstorming season as Lazio push Inter and Juventus every step of the way in pursuit of the Scuedetto.

The 29-year-old has more goals than games this season, scoring 25 in 22 and registering six assists too. What’s more, he has two goals in four Europa League games and even has a goal in the Coppa Italia. There’s nothing stopping this lad. 

 

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