Leicester City’s Jamie Vardy may have made Premier League history by scoring for the 11th consecutive game, but he has a way to go to match the record holders elsewhere in Europe.
Leicester City’s Jamie Vardy goal for Leicester City on Saturday extended his scoring run to 11 Premier League games, surpassing a mark set by Ruud van Nistelrooy in 2003. An impressive achievement, but he has a way to go to match the record holders in some of Europe’s other top six domestic leagues.
Portugal: Fernando Peyroteo (Sporting CP) – 10
one of the ‘Cinco Violinos’ (Five Violins) who helped Sporting dominate Portuguese football in the 1940s, Peyroteo announced himself in style in 1937/38, registering in each of the final ten games of his debut campaign. Even more remarkable was the fact he struck 31 times across those ten matches. The Angolan-born attacker notched more goals than games played in all 12 seasons with the Leões, hitting a Sporting-record 297 goals before retiring at 31
England: Jamie Vardy (Leicester City) – 11
Vardy was 25 and playing non-league football when Leicester took a punt on him: that looks outrageously good business now. After two seasons in England’s second tier he got his first taste of Premier League action last season. Vardy’s first 37 top-flight outings brought six goals, but he has managed 13 in 11 since, in the process helping Leicester to the summit, earning an England call-up and breaking Van Nistelrooy’s record.
Italy: Gabriel Batistuta (Fiorentina) – 11
“I have made Italian football history,” beamed Batistuta after netting in Fiorentina’s 2-2 draw with Sampdoria on 27 November 1994. “Maybe in 20 years you will come to my home in Reconquista [Argentina] because there will be a new Batistuta trying to beat my record.” It has not happened yet. “I’m happy because nobody remembered my record until today,” said ex-Bologna front man Ezio Pascutti, who had registered in ten straight games in 1962
France: Serge Masnaghetti (Valenciennes) – 13
there is no official record in France for goals in consecutive fixtures, but Masnaghetti is commonly regarded as having set the mark in 1962/63. That season brought 35 of his 111 career goals, which remains a club record. The great Jean-Pierre Papin would later feel the force of Masnaghetti when he suggested that “scoring was easier in the old days”. “Do you think defenders let me go because I was a nice guy?” smirked Masnaghetti.
Germany: Gerd Müller (Bayern München) – 16
between 27 September 1969 and 3 March 1970 the master poacher found the target in 16 Bundesliga games running. Not a prime physical specimen – Bayern coach Zlatko Čajkovski affectionately called him ‘kleines dickes Müller’ (little fat Müller) – his goalscoring remains the stuff of legend. “Bayern have Gerd Müller to thank for what the club has become,” said Franz Beckenbauer. “Without Gerd’s goals, we’d still be sitting in a wood hut at Säbener Strasse [training ground].”
Spain: Lionel Messi (Barcelona) – 21
Carrying a thigh injury, Messi began Barcelona’s 34th Liga match of 2012/13 on the bench against Betis. With his side struggling to overcome the challenge of stubborn visitors, the Argentina ace was summoned and duly delivered – notching his 45th and 46th top-flight goals of the season to extend his Liga scoring streak to 21 games in a row. Atlético Madrid ended the run next time out but by then the previous record of ten set by Barcelona’s Ronaldo in 1996/97 was long forgotten.