With the UEFA Champions League shortly to kick off, one of the first issues to be settled will be the identity of this season's opening goalscorer, with several of this season's contenders having the chance to register the first strike of the group stage for the second time.
Eight games start simultaneously at 20.45CET on Tuesday evening and, with each team determined to gain a flying start, what better way to lay down a marker than to hit the first goal in this season's competition. But which player will get it?
Real Madrid CF have reached three successive semi-finals and it would surprise few if they notch the competition's first when they travel to Galatasaray AŞ in Group B. With his exceptional strike rate, it is little surprise that Cristiano Ronaldo has already achieved the accolade, finding the net with a 27th-minute free-kick in a 5-2 win at FC Zürich in 2009/10. The Portuguese forward also struck twice in the Ali Sami Yen Spor Kompleksi last season, including a goal in just the seventh minute, but may have competition from within his own ranks. Madrid's summer signing Isco was the man who struck the opening goal of last season's competition, bending in a peach of a shot within three minutes against FC Zenit for Málaga CF.
Another player who will have the chance to score the first goal for the second time will be Zlatan Ibrahimović as his Paris Saint-Germain FC side head to Olympiacos FC. The Sweden forward struck after just 11 minutes in AFC Ajax's 2002/03 win against Olympique Lyonnais in 2002/03, and also scored on matchday one in 2010/11 and 2012/13.
With AC Milan, FC Barcelona and Borussia Dortmund all playing on Wednesday the likes of Lionel Messi, Robert Lewandowski and Mario Balotelli miss out on the chance to make their mark first, but Sergio Agüero, who claimed the honour in 2008/09 in Club Atlético de Madrid's 3-0 win at PSV Eindhoven, will have the opportunity with current club Manchester City FC at FC Viktoria Plzeň.
If you are looking to make predictions you may want to focus on Brazilian and Spanish players. Each nation has produced four first scorers, the highest number, with France the nation of three. With Spaniards Fernando Llorente at Juventus and Álvaro Negredo of City both in with a shout of leading their respective lines come kick-off, while FC Shakhtar Donetsk’s strong Brazilian contingent, including Luiz Adriano, Bernard and Taison, could all be ones to watch out for..
In terms of the fastest goal, Andras Möller and Pato both struck within the opening 60 seconds, in 1995/96 and 2011/12 respectively while Ronaldo's effort in 2009 came in at 27 minutes, the longest wait for the deadlock to be broken. The omens are also good for the team who score the first goal; 17 of the 22 fastest goals have set their side on the way to victory.
Use the comments section below to let us know which team and player will be the first to register.
Previous opening goals
1992/93 Daniel Amokachi, Club Brugge KV 1-0 PFC CSKA Moskva (17 minutes)
1993/94 Domingos Paciência, FC Porto 3-2 SV Werder Bremen (7 minutes)
1994/95 Nikolai Pisarev, FC Dynamo Kyiv 3-2 FC Spartak Moskva (12 minutes)
1995/96 Andreas Möller, Borussia Dortmund 1-3 Juventus (1 minute)
1996/97 Jari Litmanen, AJ Auxerre 0-1 AFC Ajax (4 minutes)
1997/98 Alessandro Del Piero, Juventus 5-1 Feyenoord (3 minutes)
1998/99 Joseba Etxeberria, Athletic Club 1-1 Rosenborg BK (6 minutes)
1999/00 Jan-Derek Sørensen, Boavista FC 0-3 Rosenborg BK; Robert Pirès Olympique de Marseille 2-0 SK Sturm Graz (9 minutes)
2000/01 Sonny Anderson, Olympique Lyonnais 3-1 sc Heerenveen (2 minutes)
2001/02 Elpídio Silva, Liverpool FC 1-1 Boavista FC (3 minutes)
2002/03 Zlatan Ibrahimović, AFC Ajax 2-1 Olympique Lyonnais (11 minutes)
2003/04 Mikaël Silvestre, Manchester United FC 5-0 Panathinaikos FC (13 minutes)
2004/05 Vicente Rodríguez, Valencia CF 2-0 RSC Anderlecht (16 minutes)
2005/06 Florent Sinama Pongolle, Real Betis Balompié 1-2 Liverpool FC (2 minutes)
2006/07 Andrés Iniesta, FC Barcelona 5-0 PFC Levski Sofia (7 minutes)
2007/08 Brandão, FC Shakhtar Donetsk 2-0 Celtic FC (5 minutes)
2008/09 Sergio Agüero, PSV Eindhoven 0-3 Club Atlético de Madrid (9 minutes)
2009/10 Cristiano Ronaldo, FC Zürich 2-5 Real Madrid CF (27 minutes)
2010/11 Petri Pasanen* SV Werder Bremen 2-2 Tottenham Hotspur FC (12 minutes)
2011/12 Pato, FC Barcelona 2-2 AC Milan (1 minute)
2012/13 Isco, Málaga CF 3-0 FC Zenit (3 minutes)
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