A list of the top scorers in South American qualifying is out, and Messi is at the top with three goals. He shares the rank with Uruguay’s Nicolás de la Cruz. This feat comes on top of Messi earning the Ballon d’Or for the eighth time in his life since being nominated in 2005. Cristiano Ronaldo has reacted with a smile, and Messi’s fans are not exactly happy about it, but proving their favorite player’s worth is the fact that he is currently at the top of the list.
Other players following his rank are:
Neymar from Brazil Darwin Nunez from Uruguay Salomon Rondon from Venezuela Rodrygo from Brazil Felix Torres from Ecuador
All the players are on the list, with two goals each against their names. Assuming Messi keeps up with the pace, he could soon break the cycle for his team, whereas players from Argentina have not come up on the list. Argentina last won the crown in 2002, when Hernan Crespo found the net 10 times. He shared that record with Ecuador’s Agustin Delgado.
Before that, Argentina featured on the list in 1974 with 5 goals against Ruben Ayala.
Messi is now the all-time top scorer with 31 goals in 63 appearances, bringing the average of 0.49 per game. Players with a better average are Hernan Crespo, 0.58; Marcelo Salas, 0.56; Ivan Zamorano, 0.71; Joaquin Botero, 0.52; and Agustin Delgado, 0.50.
FIFA has most recently published a compilation of results for South American qualifiers plus fixtures for the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2026. Argentina is at the top, with 12 points coming from 4 consecutive wins and 0 losses. Uruguay is closely following in their footsteps, with a difference of 5 marks in the points table, having won 2 events and lost 1 event with a single draw.
Brazil is in the third position because of its lower GF and GA of 7 and 4, respectively. Venezuela has climbed the ranking with 7 points.
The most recent event was played between Argentina and Peru. Messi’s side scored twice, as he ensured both goals in the first half. This win has added to their head-to-head stats and also affected many online FIFA betting sites by setting the odds very high. Peru has yet to clinch a victory, having landed a draw two times and losing to them three times. Most of the victories for Argentina have come by restricting Peru to a goalless scoreboard.
Brazil lost to Uruguay 2-0 before that. Darwin introduced the first goal in the 42nd minute, and the final winning edge was credited to Nicolas, who brought the same in the 77th minute.
Peru will face Bolivia in the next scheduled match, followed by Ecuador versus Venezuela and Argentina versus Uruguay. Since he has won the Ballon d’Or eight times and leads the South American qualifiers’ scoring tally, all eyes are on Messi. Inexplicably, Cristiano Ronaldo was not included in the Ballon d’Or due to his subpar performance in the most recent FIFA World Cup and his subsequent lack of visibility.