What Are Some Soccer World Records?


Quick Answer

Edson Arantes de Nascimento, better known as Pel?, has the world record for goals, with 1,279 in 1,363 matches held between 1956 and 1977. Pel? played for Santos in Brazil and the New York Cosmos in the United States.

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Full Answer

Other individual record holders include Dixie Dean, a player for Everton of England, who tallied 60 goals during the 1927-28 season. Lionel Messi had 91 goals in 2012, the most goals during a calendar year.

A 31-0 victory for Australia over American Samoa in a 2002 FIFA World Cup qualifier game on April 11, 2001, is the largest margin of victory in an international match. Archie Thompson's 13 goals against American Samoa remains the most goals scored by an individual in an international contest. David Zdrillic's eight goals still is the second-most by a player since World War I. Australia set the previous record, with a 22-0 win over Tonga, two days earlier.

Among women's records, Abby Wambach of the United States has 182 goals in 226 matches for the national team, as of May 2015. Wambach, who began playing with the national team in 2001, became the record holder on July 20, 2009, when she passed another American, Mia Hamm, who posted 158 goals between 1987 and 2004.

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