The 5 Fastest Players to Reach 20 Champions League Goals

​The Champions League returned in some style on Tuesday, with numerous clubs booking their places in the knockout stages of the competition. 

One club that was able to do just that was Tottenham Hotspur. Coincidentally, it also happened to be Jose Mourinho’s first home game in charge of Spurs, after taking over from the departed Mauricio Pochettino. 

The north London side certainly didn’t do it the easy way, but they were eventually able to prevail 4-2 against Olympiacos, with ​Harry Kane bagging a brace to help secure the points. In doing so, as noted by Opta, the Englishman became the fastest ever player to reach 20 goals in the Champions League. 

It’s an astonishing achievement for Kane, taking him past a number of Champions League legends. With that in mind, 90min runs you down the five fastest players to reach 20 Champions League goals…

5. Mario Gomez

Bayern Munich's striker Mario Gomez cele

20 goals in 32 matches

Aged 34, Mario Gomez is still going strong, currently playing for VfB Stuttgart. However, it was his earlier years at the club where he was firing in goals in the Champions League. 

His first in the competition came in the 2007/08 season, where he ended up finding the back of the net three times in four matches. The striker soon parted ways with the club and joined fellow German side ​Bayern Munich, but his strike rate for Die Roten in his first season wasn’t all that impressive – finishing the 2009/10 UCL campaign with one goal from 12 appearances.

However, the following season, he bagged eight goals in eight games and went on to rifle in a further 12 from 12 the season after to take him past 20 goals. 

4. Filippo Inzaghi 

Filippo Inzaghi

20 goals in 28 games

Inzaghi bagged a debut goal in the ​Champions League as his Juventus side comfortably strolled past Feyenoord. Six goals in ten games in 1997/98 was impressive, but this was just the beginning.

He went on to net 11 goals in his next two campaigns in the competition, before sealing a switch to fellow Italian giants ​Milan.

He surpassed the 20 goal mark in 2002/03, where he went on to fire in an impressive ten goals in 14 appearances. The icon has since transitioned into management, currently in charge of Serie B side Benevento. 

3. Ruud van Nistelrooy

Ruud Van Nistelrooy of Manchester United celebrates after scoring his first goal

20 goals in 27 matches

Van Nistelrooy was prolific, the numbers speak for themselves. Playing for PSV Eindhoven, the forward netted five times in five games in the 1998/99 campaign, including one hat-trick. 

He went on to play one more season with the Dutch side, where he bagged three goals in six games in the competition before completing a move to ​Manchester United. 

With the Red Devils, Van Nistelrooy found the net ten times in 14 matches in 2001/02, leaving him two goals short of 20. As you’d suspect, however, he didn’t need too many games longer to reach the milestone. Three goals in the opening two games of the 2002/03 season was enough for him to seal it. He went on to net 12 goals in just nine games that season.

The striker now finds himself sat sixth in the top scoring charts in the Champions League. 

2. Alessandro Del Piero 

20 goals in 26 matches

A 20-year-old Del Piero netted his first Champions League goal for ​Juventus, as his side overcame Borussia Dortmund 3-1 back in 1995. Although the German side took the lead early on, the Bianconeri soon levelled through Michele Padovano, heading home a Del Piero cross. 

The youngster then produced a moment of absolute magic. He shifted the ball from left to right numerous times, before cutting in and unleashing a stunning curling effort into the top corner. Oh, he also produced another assist that match. Not a bad debut. 

He went on to score in his next four matches in the competition, finishing as the second top goalscorer. Del Piero went on to score six goals in 1995/96. The Italian notched four in six games the following season, taking his tally to ten. However, it was the 1997/98 campaign which earns him a place on this list.

The mesmeric forward scored twice in the opening clash against Feyenoord, setting him on his way to a stunning ten goals that season – including a hat-trick against Monaco to take him to 20. In the words of Harry Kane, he ‘wasn’t a bad player.’

1. Harry Kane

Harry Kane

20 goals in 24 matches

Kane tops this list and his stats are beyond ridiculous. Tuesday night saw Robert Lewandowski score what appeared to be his 15,432nd goal of the season and, as a result, he grabbed a number of headlines.

But, Kane’s brace means he has now netted 20 goals in only 24 matches in the Champions League.

While he was unable to find the net on his debut in the competition against Monaco in September 2016, he was able to grab his first in the return fixture. He then struck against CSKA Moscow in December.

2017/18 saw the ​Lilywhites reach the quarter-finals of the competition, with Kane bagging seven goals in seven games. The 26-year-old went on to find the net five times in nine appearances the following season, helping the club reach the final of the competition. 

But, clearly, Kane was frustrated with his tally from that season because he’s already got six goals to his name in just five matches.


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