As we count down the final days of 2023, let's take a moment to recap the calendar year's top scorers of world football. It's worth reminding you that the ultimate leader of the list is still up in the air, as Ronaldo and Haaland have three games left.
Erling Haaland — 50 goals
Norwegian forward Erling Haaland made a massive splash in his first season with Manchester City. The goal machine notched the 22/23 Premier League Golden Boot with 36 season strikes to his name. The treble-winner was also the Champions League top scorer last season.
Some people think Haaland has started slow in this new 23/24 season. By his prolific standards, sure, but he's still got 19 goals in just 22 matches. With 50 goals to his name in 2023, he has three games left before the year ends to shoot himself up the list to the #1 spot.
Cristiano Ronaldo — 51 goals
“38 year old Cristiano Ronaldo is still able to compete with me in my prime for the top scorer of 2023. It's just abnormal. He's the GOAT,” said Haaland. That's right, Erling, Cristiano (15 years your elder) is tied with you on 50 goals for this calendar year.
Never write off Cristiano Ronaldo — the Portuguese striker is still bagging them for Al Nassr in the Middle East with 17 in 16 Saudi Pro League matches this season. Ronaldo also has two games remaining to finish above Mbappe and Kane. Can he do it?
Kylian Mbappe – 52 goals
Everyone is waiting for Kylian Mbappe to move to the BIG leagues, like the Premier League or La Liga. No one doubts that he'll have the same prolific success.
With Real Madrid allegedly dropping out of the race, Xavi's Barcelona could be the one to scoop up the Frenchman. Can he score 50+ goals in one of Europe's top five leagues? Yes, we think that's a sure bet.
Harry Kane – 52 goals
30-year-old Harry Kane finally transfer his goal-scoring exploits to another top team in Europe: Bayern Munich. The Bavarian giants paid heavily for the Englishman but are reaping the benefits of everything they paid for. Kane already has 21 strikes in 15 Bundesliga matches and 52 total, carrying over his goal-scoring tally from Tottenham the prior spring.
For the first time ever, Boxing Day's goal king will get a rest this winter holiday. Kane's fresh legs could be essential to Bayern's Bundesliga title run and Champions League for the second half of the season.