The Euro 2016 has definitely come with a lot of fun and excitement thanks to the number of exciting players the tournament always produce. Overtime, a lot of goals has been scored and there has been a lot of classic games in every tournament. This tournament is no different as although it started slowly, it gradually grew and became exciting for the fans worldwide. In this article thus, we examine the top nine goal scorers ever in the competitions history.
Gomes made his senior international debut at 19, in a 1996 friendly against France. He scored his first senior international goal in Portugal’s opening match at the UEFA Euro 2000, marking his fourth start with the winner as the side came from two goals down to beat England 3–2.He would finish the competition with four goals as the national team reached the last four. Nuno Miguel Soares Pereira Ribeiro famously known as Nuno Gomes always had a knack for scoring goals, both for his club and his country, but he made his international goal scoring debut in spectacular fashion. In his fourth international start, which came at the UEFA Euro 200 tournament in Netherlands, he scored his first international goal, and added two more in their second game in the tournament. He finished the tournament with four goals in three games, and then added a goal apiece in his next two tournament appearances in 2004 and 2008.
His first tournament action was at UEFA Euro 2004, in which he became the youngest scorer in competition history on 17 June 2004, when he scored twice against Switzerland and ended up with four goals in the four games that he played in during the tournament. In Euro 2012,after missing the first two games due to a red card, Rooney was able to play in the final match of the group stage against Ukraine on 19 June 2012, scoring the only goal of the game, allowing England to progress to the quarterfinals. England were eventually knocked out in the quarter-finals against Italy.In Euro 2016, he scored one goal for England against Iceland but they were eventually knocked out 2-1 in the round of sixteen.
Henry is widely considered to be one of the greatest strikers in history, and finished his career as the leading goal scorer in Arsenal history. He also helped the French national team win the 1998 FIFA World Cup. In his first appearance at the UEFA European tournament in 2000, he scored three goals in the tournament, and helped France win the tournament. In his second appearance, he scored two goals for the national team, but they lost in the quarterfinals, and in his final appearance, he scored France’s only goal at the 2008 tournament.
Ibrahimović was eligible to represent Sweden, Bosnia and Herzegovina, or Croatia at international level; he chose Sweden. He made his debut for Sweden in a 0–0 friendly draw against the Faroe Islands at Tipshallen on 31 January 2001. Ibrahimović ended his international goal drought, which had lasted for over two years, against Greece in Sweden’s Euro 2008 opener on 10 June 2008, and the next match against Spain four days later. He finished the tournament with two goals as Sweden were eliminated in the group stage by Russia. At the Euro 2012 finals, Ibrahimović scored the opening goal in Sweden’s first game against Ukraine. He then scored with a volley, later considered the goal of the tournament, to open the score in Sweden’s 2–0 win against France in the last group match. Despite the victory, Sweden was knocked out in the group stage. On 11 May 2016, Ibrahimović made the final 23 man squad for Sweden at UEFA Euro 2016 but failed to score at the tournament as Sweden were knocked out in the group stage. On 21 June 2016, Ibrahimović announced his retirement from international football.
As a member of the Netherlands Euro 96 squad, Kluivert missed most of UEFA Euro 1996 with a knee injury. During the final group game and from a Dennis Bergkamp assist, he scored against England, which enabled the Netherlands to qualify for the knock-out round over Scotland on goal difference. There, they lost in a penalty shootout to France. The UEFA Euro 2000 would represent Kluivert’s finest hour as the spearhead of a star-studded Oranje side. Kluivert scored a hat-trick in the 6–1 quarter-final demolition of Yugoslavia; he was originally credited with four goals, but the third was later re-attributed as an own goal by Yugoslavia’s Dejan Govedarica after Kluivert admitted not getting a touch on Paul Bosvelt’s cross. Had all four goals stood, Kluivert would have been the first player to score four times in a European Championship finals match.The semi-final against Italy would provide much heartache for Kluivert, as the Dutch yet again crashed out on penalties.
He played in Euro 2004, where he and the Czech Republic’s Milan Baroš were the only players to score in all three group stage matches. At Euro 2008, Van Nistelrooy scored for the Netherlands in their decisive 3–0 victory over Italy in the group stage, and scored the equaliser in their eventual 3–1 loss to Russia in the quarter-finals. On 4 August, he again announced his retirement from international competition. Manchester United fans will fondly remember Van Nistelrooy, who scored almost 100 goals for the team after half a decade there. He retired with 70 caps for the Netherlands, scoring 35 goals over a 13-year career with the national team, and won the Dutch Footballer of Year award in 1999 and 2000.
Euro 1996 was a positive experience for both Shearer and England. With England not required to qualify as hosts, Shearer had not scored in 12 games in the 21 months prior,and even his overall goalscoring record for England did not look too impressive so far; five goals in 23 games.
However, he found the net in the 22nd minute of the first game, against Switzerland.Scoring once in the following game against Scotland and twice in a 4–1 win over the Netherlands, Shearer helped England to progress to the next stage in front of their own fans in Wembley.
In the quarter-finals, England were outplayed by Spain but got through to a penalty shootout after a goalless draw. Shearer scored the first England penalty while the Spaniards failed to score from two of theirs, sending England into the semi-final against Germany. Shearer headed England into the lead after three minutes, but the Germans quickly equalised and the match went to penalties again. This time, Germany won from the spot; although Shearer scored, his team-mate Gareth Southgate missed his kick and England were eliminated. Shearer’s five goals made him the competition’s top scorer. In Euro 2000, Shearer scored as England defeated Germany 1–0,ensuring that England beat their European neighbours for the first time since the 1966 World Cup Final. To remain in the tournament, England only required a draw against Romania in the final group match, and Shearer scored a penalty as England went in at half-time 2–1 up, but Romania ultimately won 3–2. England’s tournament was over, and so was Shearer’s international career.
Cristiano was called up for UEFA Euro 2004, held in his home country,and scored his first international goal in a 2–1 group stage loss to eventual champions Greece.After converting his penalty in a shootout against England at the quarter-final stage,he helped Portugal reach the final by scoring the opening goal in a 2–1 win over the Netherlands,but the crucial last match ended in a 0–1 defeat He was featured in the team of the tournament, having provided two assists in addition to his two goals. In Euro 2008,he scored just one goal in the tournament, netting the second goal of their 3–1 win in the group stage match against the Czech Republic, where he was named man of the match. Portugal were eliminated in the quarter-finals with a 3–2 loss against eventual finalists Germany.In Euro 2012, after failing to score in the first two matches, he redeemed himself in the last group match against the Netherlands, where he scored twice to secure a 2–1 victory, and the quarter-finals against the Czech Republic, scoring a header to give his team a 1–0 win. After the semi-finals against Spain ended scoreless, with Ronaldo having sent three shots over the bar, Portugal were eliminated in the penalty shootout.In Euro 2016 so far, he has scored two goals and both were against Hungary.
Platini is one of the greatest midfielders ever, and the one man that stands over others in terms of the top goal scorer in UEFA European Championship history. Platini participated in Euro 1984, which was his only appearance at the tournament, and not only led his country to victory, he did it in impressive fashion. Platini scored in every game he played for France, and had two hat tricks in the tournament, giving him nine goals in five games. No other player in the history of the tournament has even come close to matching his performance in 1984, and it will be very hard to top what he did. In just five games, France’s Michel Platini became and remains the top goalscorer in all the Euro tournaments. France would go on to win the 1984 tournament, with Platini scoring a free kick that would eventually seal a 2-0 win against Spain in the final. Seen by many as one of the greatest footballers ever, Platini came sixth in FIFA’s Player of the Century vote, and was the President of UEFA until 2015.