Chhetri better than Ronaldo and Messi? Stats definitely say so!

After his goal against Puerto Rico, the Indian captain took his tally to 51 goals in 91 games, giving him the best goals to games ratio for active players in international football who have scored more than 50 goals.

Bengaluru FC Mumbai City FC forward Sunil Chettri Messi Ronaldo India

Sunil Chhetri has scored 51 goals in 91 games for India.   -  K. Murali Kumar

Move over Messi and Ronaldo. Sunil Chhetri now holds the tag of international football's most prolific goalscorer. After his goal against Puerto Rico, the Indian captain took his tally to 51 goals in 91 games, giving him the best goals to games ratio (0.56) for active players in international football who have scored more than 50 goals.

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In fact, there are only five active players who have scored more than 50 goals for their country, the other four being Lionel Messi (56 goals in 114 appearances), Cristiano Ronaldo (61 in 133), Wayne Rooney (53 in 116) and USA forward Clint Dempsey (52 in 130). Esteemed company indeed.

Ever since he made his national team debut in 2005, Chhetri has found the back of the net with remarkable consistency. After being named captain in 2011, he scored seven goals in a single edition of the SAFF Championship en route to the title, surpassing I. M. Vijayan's record of six goals in the 97 edition.

Even in club football, the dimunitive forward has a similar scoring rate. He has scored 83 goals in 160 games, averaging just above a goal every two games and winning league titles with three different clubs.

Although moves to Portugal's Sporting Lisbon B and Kansas City Wizards in the MLS did not yield much success, Chhetri has always delivered in Indian club football and for the national team. He became the first Indian to score a hat-trick in the Indian Super League after netting a treble against NorthEast United FC on Matchday 4 of the 2015 edition. Darren O'Dea, his former Mumbai FC team-mate and former Republic of Ireland international, called him India's David Beckham in an > exclusive interview with Sportstar.

If Bhaichung Bhutia put India on the footballing world map, Sunil Chhetri has taken it up a notch. Now 32, at an age when most professional football players contemplate hanging up their boots looking for one last big payday, India's best football player still has plenty to offer.