Kylian Mbappe has decided to stay at Paris St-Germain in what promises to be a huge few months for some of football’s most prolific strikers.
The Frenchman rejected the chance to join compatriot and Ballon d’Or favorite Karim Benzema at Real Madrid, despite heavy speculation he would quit the Ligue 1 champions.
Manchester City have already agreed a deal for Borussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland, while Poland frontman Robert Lewandowski has said he wants to leave German champions Bayern Munich.
England captain Harry Kane was the focus of a transfer saga last summer as Tottenham turned down Premier League rivals City’s advances. But will he stay this summer?
Cristiano Ronaldo could also be on the move after his one season at Manchester United.
We take a closer look at each striker before asking you to vote for who you think is the best in the world. We have only included out-and-out strikers in our list, meaning players such as Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Lionel Messi don’t feature.
|Kylian Mbappe||Erling Haaland||Robert Lewandowski||Harry Kane||Karim Benzema||Cristiano Ronaldo|
|Minutes per goal||108.4||87.0||84.3||196.4||96.14||138.28|
Not many would have included Benzema on a shortlist for ‘world’s best striker’ just a few seasons ago, but Ronaldo’s departure from Real Madrid in 2018 helped to catapult the Frenchman to the very top of the game.
The 34-year-old is the top scorer in the Champions League this season, scoring 15 goals to fire Real into Saturday’s final against Liverpool – including decisive hat-tricks against both Chelsea and PSG in the knockout rounds.
He has also scored 27 in just 32 games in Real Madrid’s La Liga-winning season – his best return since joining Los Blancos in 2009 – taking his total in all competitions for the club to 323.
Benzema spent years in Ronaldo’s shadow at the Bernabeu. Once primarily a creator for others, he has now emerged as Real’s main man – and one of the most clinical strikers in Europe.
Manchester City have been hunting for a successor to their all-time top scorer Sergio Aguero – and they hope 21-year-old Haaland will be the one.
The Norway international, regarded as one of the best young talents in world football, has scored 86 goals in 89 appearances for Borussia Dortmund since joining from Red Bull Salzburg in January 2020.
Haaland – also pursued by Real Madrid – could be the final piece of the puzzle for City in their bid to win their first Champions League trophy. After all, he has the best minutes-per-goal ratio in the competition’s history, scoring every 64 minutes on average.
Kane’s Tottenham career appeared to be over last summer as Manchester City made a strong move to sign him, and the striker himself indicated he would be keen to leave.
Spurs held firm, though, and Kane has scored 16 Premier League goals and provided eight assists, taking them to the brink of Champions League qualification.
The 28-year-old has 182 Premier League goals – chasing Alan Shearer’s record of 260 – and is also just four goals shy of matching Wayne Rooney’s England all-time scoring record of 53.
Spurs boss Antonio Conte will be desperate to keep hold of Kane, but the movement of some of his forward rivals could provide him with another dilemma.
The Polish striker’s next move remains unknown after Bayern Munich revealed he wanted to leave.
The 33-year-old is out of contract next June and has already confirmed he won’t sign a new deal, sparking interest in his services.
A winner of the past two Fifa Player of the Year awards, Lewandowski has admirers at several Premier League clubs, Barcelona and Real Madrid.
He has scored 344 times in 374 games for Bayern since arriving in 2014 and is their second-highest scorer of all time behind Gerd Muller.
Last year he broke Muller’s long-standing record for most Bundesliga goals in a calendar year, with 43 in 34 games.
He has scored 50 in 46 appearances in all competitions this season.
So Mbappe has decided to sign a new three-year contract to stay with PSG rather than join Real on a free transfer this summer – and you can understand the excitement from fans of the Ligue 1 champions.
The former Monaco striker helped his club regain the league title, scoring 28 goals and providing 17 assists – topping the charts for both. He also finished Ligue 1’s top scorer for the fourth season in a row.
The 23-year-old has won Ligue 1’s player of the year award three times and was named young player of the tournament as he helped France to World Cup glory in 2018.
It has been a season to forget for Manchester United, but there can be few complaints about Ronaldo’s return in front of goal after he rejoined the club last summer.
The 37-year-old is the Premier League’s third top scorer with 18 goals and also contributed a number of key strikes in United’s Champions League campaign.
Where the Portuguese will be next season remains to be seen, but no-one can dispute his finishing prowess.
He has scored 20 or more goals in all competitions in the past 16 seasons, hit 60 career hat-tricks, won five Ballon d’Or awards and has 813 goals to his name.
Difficult to ignore.
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