Who are the all-time group stage top scorers?

The 28th UEFA Champions League group stage is well under way; who are the top scorers at this level?

Who are the all-time group stage top scorers?
Who are the all-time group stage top scorers? ©Getty Images

Lionel Messi is now seven goals clear at the top of the standings, with no prizes for guessing his nearest competitor.

Statistics do not include goals and appearances from the second group stage (1999/2000 to 2002/03)

Most UEFA Champions League group stage goals*

Messi's European goals: 2005-2018
Messi's European goals: 2005-2018

71: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
64: Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United, Real Madrid, Juventus)
49: Karim Benzema (Lyon, Real Madrid)
47: Robert Lewandowski (Borussia Dortmund, Bayern München)
39: Ruud van Nistelrooy (PSV Eindhoven, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Hamburg)
37: Raúl González (Real Madrid, Schalke)
36: Zlatan Ibrahimović (Ajax, Juventus, Internazionale Milano, Barcelona, AC Milan, Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United)
31: Sergio Agüero (Atlético Madrid, Manchester City)
31: Alessandro Del Piero (Juventus)
30: Didier Drogba (Marseille, Chelsea, Galatasaray)

Best goals per game ratio (minimum 20 scored)

Van Nistelrooy: My top three goals
Van Nistelrooy: My top three goals

0.96: Lionel Messi (Barcelona) – 71 goals in 74 games
0.84: Robert Lewandowski (Borussia Dortmund, Bayern München) – 47 goals in 56 games
0.76:
Ruud van Nistelrooy (PSV Eindhoven, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Hamburg) – 39 goals in 51 games
0.72: Roy Makaay (Deportivo La Coruña, Bayern München) – 23 goals in 32 games
0.70: Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United, Real Madrid, Juventus) – 64 goals in 91 games
0.68: Karim Benzema (Lyon, Real Madrid) – 49 goals in 72 games
0.64: Didier Drogba (Marseille, Chelsea, Galatasaray) – 30 goals in 47 games
0.63: Edinson Cavani (Napoli, Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United) – 29 goals in 46 games
0.62: Filippo Inzaghi (Juventus, AC Milan) – 29 goals in 47 games
0.61:  Neymar (Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain) – 23 goals in 38 games 
0.57: Sergio Agüero (Atlético Madrid, Manchester City) – 31 goals in 54 games

• Messi's close to a goal-a-game strike rate is astounding, with Robert Lewandowski not far behind, while Ronaldo's early years as a winger rather than out-and-out forward might explain why he lags behind.

Most UEFA Champions League group stage appearances

95: Iker Casillas (Real Madrid, Porto)
91: Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United, Real Madrid, Juventus)
80:
Xavi Hernández (Barcelona)
77: Raúl González (Real Madrid, Schalke)
75: Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
74: Ryan Giggs (Manchester United)
74: Zlatan Ibrahimović (Ajax, Juventus, Internazionale Milano, Barcelona, AC Milan, Paris, Manchester United)
72: Clarence Seedorf (Ajax, Real Madrid, AC Milan)
69: Sergei Ignashevich (Lokomotiv Moskva, CSKA Moskva)
69: Gianluigi Buffon (Parma, Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain)
67: Roberto Carlos (Real Madrid, Fenerbahçe)

Goalkeeper Casillas's record for group stage appearances is being challenged by Cristiano Ronaldo