Top 10 fastest goals in international football

A look at the fastest goals, scored within seconds of kick-off, over the years in international football.

Published : May 04, 2020 09:59 IST

Germany's Lucas Podolski holds the record for the fastest goal in international football
Germany's Lucas Podolski holds the record for the fastest goal in international football

Germany's Lucas Podolski holds the record for the fastest goal in international football

Quick goals are some of the best things to enjoy in a football match. An electric counter-attack, a long punt over the goalkeeper or a Gareth Bale leaving Marc Batra in the dust is sure to give the viewers a rush of adrenaline. There are some goals that come even before the fans have settled in their seats and here we look at the goals in the international arena that have come in less than 15 seconds from the kick off. Though there are goals from other international matches were recording was not possible, these are the ones that are believed to be the fastest.

Neymar (14 seconds), Brazil vs Honduras, 2016 Rio Olympics

Brazilian talisman Neymar scored in 14 seconds after kick-off against Honduras at the 2016 Rio Olympics
Hopes were high on a strong Brazil team at the Olympics on home soil as it cruised into the quarterfinals. Star forward Neymar, who was criticised for his underwhelming performances until that point, made Olympic history by scoring the fastest goal in the tournament’s history 14 seconds after kick off.

Honduras tried to play out from the back when he charged at Johnny Palacios and nicked the ball off the centre back before bundling it home. The striker added his team’s third in 35th minute and bagged an assist in the second half as Brazil eased to a 6-0 win.

Read: How Liverpool conquered the FIFA Club World Cup

Yan Naing Oo (13 seconds), India vs Myanmar, 2017 AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers

Yan Niang oo has made 23 appearances for Myanmar and has only scored one international goal which was a historical one. Facing India in the AFC Asian Cup qualifier in Goa, Myanmar went full throttle from the kick off with left-back Si Thu Aung playing a one-two with winger Thein Than Win who then crossed into the box. Naing Oo, lurking at the goalmouth, timed his jump to perfection to head home an early goal. India hit back through a goal from skipper Sunil Chhetri before Kyaw Ko Ko put Myanmar back in the lead. Jeje Lalpekhlua’s 69th minute goal secured a 2-2 draw for the host.

I.M. Vijayan (12 seconds), India vs Bhutan, 1999 SAF Games

I.M. Vijayan (10) scored in 12 seconds from kick-off for the eighth-fastest goal in international football
India’s legendary forward I.M. Vijayan, was in fine form at the South Asian Federation Games in Nepal as he began the tournament with a hat-trick in the 5-2 win against Pakistan.

The striker continued his supreme touch in the second match against Bhutan, by opening the scoring within just 12 seconds from the start. Vijayan scored all the goals in India's 3-0 win on the night. It still remains the fastest goal by an Indian player in international football history. Vijayan’s tally seven goals in the tournament helped India win the gold medal in that tournament.

Alex Morgan (12 seconds), USA vs Costa Rica, 2016 Olympics Qualifiers

United States Women's National Team's forward Alex Morgan (in picture) scored in 12 seconds from kick-off against Costa Rica
USA women’s team’s star striker and two-time world champion Alex Morgan scored the fastest goal in the country’s footballing history when she beat Costa Rica goalkeeper 12 seconds from the start.

Full-back Ali Krieger sent a long pass in from the back to Carli Lloyd, who flicked it on to Morgan who finished with a volley to put USA ahead. Morgan added one more in the second half as USA routed Costa Rica 5-0.

Diego Souza (12 seconds), Australia vs Brazil, 2017 International friendly

Playing at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Australia’s coach Ange Postecoglou named an inexperienced starting XI for the friendly against Brazil, which was gathering steam ahead of the FIFA Confederations Cup. Twelve seconds into the first half, winger Guiliano pounced on a stray pass from Mike Milligan and teed up Diego Souza who finished from tight angle from the right corner of the box for his first international goal. The striker scored one more goal in the injury time to add to strikes from Thiago Silva and Taison as the Selecao wrapped up the match 4-0.

Hakan Sukur (10.8 seconds), South Korea vs Turkey, 2002 World Cup

Turkey's Hakan Sukur scored inside 11 seconds from kick-off against South Korea at the 2002 World Cup
Host South Korea had a dream run into the semifinal of the 2002 FIFA World Cup it co-hosted and was gunning for a third place finish against Turkey.

As Korea began the proceedings, Turkey striker Ilhan Mansiz ran straight and forced a mistake from Korean skipper Hong Myung-Bo who squared the ball to Hakan Sukur. Sukur took a touch and finished past the onrushing keeper in a flash leaving the home crowd stunned. Korea fought back with goals from Lee Eul Young and Song Chong Gug but a first-half brace from Mansiz sealed 3-2 win for Turkey.

Paul Onuachu (9 seconds), Nigeria vs Egypt, 2019 International Friendly

Nigeria had not been able to get past Egypt in 29 years. It took nine seconds for FC Midtjylland striker Paul Onuachu to end that drought when he raced away with the ball on the right wing, cut in and finish past the goalkeeper. Onuachu’s goal was enough for the Super Eagles to edge out Egypt by 1-0.

Davide Gualtieri (8.3 seconds), England vs San Marino, 1993 World Cup Qualifiers

England needed to beat minnows San Marino by a margin of seven goals or more to qualify for the 1994 FIFA World Cup, off which head coach Graham Taylor was confident. It took striker Davide Gualtieri just 8.33 seconds to end England’s hope when he latched on to a poor back-pass from Stuart Pearce and slotted past David Seaman. England replied with a glut of goals and won the match 7-1, but Gualtieri’s opener costed the Three Lions dearly as Netherlands qualified for the World Cup in USA. In a 2012 interview with the Guardian, Gualtieri revealed that he still receives autograph requests from fans who remember him for that quickfire goal.

Christian Benteke (8.1 seconds), Belgium vs Gibraltar, 2016 World Cup Qualifiers

Christian Benteke celebrates his goal against Gibraltar in a 2016 World Cup qualifier
Belgium and Crystal Palace striker Christian Benteke broke the Davide Gualtieri’s record for the fastest goal in World Cup Qualifying when he bulldozed the Gibraltar defence by stealing the ball near the centre line.

It took the towering striker just 8.1 seconds, 0.2 seconds less than Gualtieri, to score from kick off. Benteke went on to score a hat-trick in that match while strikes from Axel Witsel, Dries Mertens and Eden Hazard handed Gibraltar a 6-0 drubbing.

Lukas Podolski (6 seconds), Germany vs Ecuador, 2013 International Friendly

The record for the fastest international goal belongs that of Germany forward Lukas Podolski’s against Ecuador on 29 May, 2013. As the international friendly in Florida kicked off, Podolski stole the ball from centre-back Gabriel Achilier outside the box and squeezed it past the goalkeeper’s extended arm to put Germany 1-0 up after just six seconds. The former Arsenal striker scored another goal in the second half while Lars Bender added two more as Germany won the game 4-2.

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