No matter where you are in the world, prolific goalscorers will invariably enjoy the most attention and love from football fans.
A rock-solid centre half might be the cornerstone of a miserly defence, but the players putting the ball in the back of the net matter most to the vast majority of fans.
Europe’s ‘top-five’ leagues – England, Spain, Italy, Germany and France – have obviously produced some stellar strikers over the years.
Let’s focus on France. Currently home to top goalscorers such as Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe and Neymar, the country’s top flight, or Ligue 1, has witnessed some superb goalscoring feats over the years from players that are not household names like the current superstars.
Who Scored the Most Goals in One Season in Ligue 1?
Croatian striker Josip Skoblar holds the record for scoring the most Ligue 1 goals in a season, having notched an impressive 44 goals from 36 matches in the 1970/71 season for Marseille, helping his team to win the league title.
This is the only instance of a player scoring more than 40 goals in a Ligue 1 season, which no player has yet achieved in the English Premier League. Overall, Skoblar scored 151 goals in 174 games for Marseille during two spells at the club, and was top scorer in Ligue 1 for three successive seasons from 1971 to 1973.
Ligue 1 Record Goals in a Season (Top 10)
|2||Zlatan Ibrahimovic||Paris Saint-Germain||38||2015/16|
|3||Carlos Bianchi||Paris Saint-Germain||37||1977/78|
|=5||Edinson Cavani||Paris Saint-Germain||35||2016/17|
There are some well-known names on this list, including Swedish superstar Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who holds the record for most Ligue 1 goals in a season in the ‘modern era’ after hitting the net 38 times for PSG in 2015/16.
The only player to make the top-ten list twice is Carlos Bianchi, with the prolific Argentinian striker scoring 37 times for PSG in 1977/78 and 34 times for Reims in 1975/76.
Josep Skoblar (44 Goals in 36 Appearances – 1970/71)
The 1970/71 campaign was the first of three seasons in a row where Skoblar was Ligue 1’s top scorer, as his 44 goals helped Marseille to the league title and earned him the European Golden Boot Award. Predictably, Skoblar was inducted into the Marseille Hall of Fame back in 2009.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic (38 Goals in 31 Appearances – 2015/16)
The iconic Zlatan Ibrahimovic signed off at PSG as Ligue 1’s top scorer in 2015/16, netting 38 times from only 31 matches, including two hat-tricks, as the Parisian club stormed to the title by 31 points from second-placed Lyon. Overall, he scored 50 goals in 51 appearances in all competitions during the campaign.
Carlos Bianchi (37 Goals in 38 Appearances – 1977/78)
Two seasons after notching 34 goals in a season for Reims, Argentinian striker Carlos Bianchi found the net 37 times for PSG in 1977/78, which was remarkable as the club only managed an 11th-place finish in Ligue 1. The prolific Bianchi ended his career with 426 club goals from 591 appearances.
Philippe Gondet (36 Goals in 38 Appearances – 1965/66)
Gondet’s 36 goals in the 1965/66 season spearheaded Nantes’ convincing second successive title win, finishing seven points clear of Bordeaux. The next-highest goalscorer was Robert Herbin of Saint-Etienne, who ‘only’ managed 26 goals.