How Many Goals Have Been Scored in World Cup History?


The clock is ticking and we are days away from the first whistle blowing. The 2022 FIFA World Cup will be kicking off with host nation Qatar and Ecuador in Group A on Nov. 20. 

One of the most exhilarating parts of the quadrennial tournament is, of course, when a goal is scored. Whether it’s a penalty kick, a header or just a bullet from the edge of the goal box, any goal is exciting when the tournament is underway.

As we gear up for the intensity that is about to set sail, let’s take a look back at some history on World Cup goals:

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What World Cup had the most goals scored?

When it comes to the most goals scored in a single World Cup, two tournaments take the cake on this one:

First is the 1998 FIFA World Cup, which took place in France and crowned France as the champion. During this tournament, 171 goals were scored. Second is the 2014 FIFA World Cup, which took place in Brazil and crowned Germany as the champion, which also had a total of 171 goals scored. 

What World Cup had the fewest goals scored?

The World Cup that saw the fewest goals was during the first two tournaments, which took place in 1930 and 1934. Both tournaments only reached 70 goals. However, it’s important to note that these World Cups had only 13-16 teams, whereas the 1998 tournament began the trend of having 32 teams participate. 

How many total goals have been scored in World Cups?

There have been a total of 2,548 goals scored in World Cup tournaments. 

How many players have scored a goal in the World Cup?

Out of 21 editions of the World Cup, there have been over 1,300 goalscorers. 

Who has scored the most goals in a single World Cup?

France’s Just Fontaine holds the record for the most goals scored in a single FIFA World Cup.

Fontaine achieved this record during the 1958 FIFA World Cup, which took place in Sweden, where he scored 13 goals in six matches.

He was named one of the 125 Greatest Living Footballers of all-time by Pelé at a FIFA Awards Ceremony.

Who has scored the most goals throughout their World Cup appearances?

Though Fontaine scored the highest number of goals in a single World Cup, someone else sits at the top of the leaderboard in terms of achieving the most goals across their World Cup appearances. 

The honor goes to Germany’s Miroslav Klose. In four of his World Cup appearances (2002, 2006, 2010, 2014), he played 24 matches and scored 16 goals total.

Next in line is Brazil’s Ronaldo, who scored 15 goals total throughout four of his appearances (1994, 1998, 2002, 2006).

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