Manchester United's Wayne Rooney becomes highest-scoring English player in Champions League history after brace against Otelul Galati

The Manchester United striker's double in Romania means he now heads an impressive list of goal-getters from his own country, although Raul still leads the way overall
Manchester United star Wayne Rooney has become the highest-scoring English player in Champions League history after his brace against Romanian champions Otelul Galati on Tuesday night.

The 25-year-old netted twice – both times from the penalty spot – as the Red Devils had to work hard to earn a 2-0 victory in Bucharest to move his career tally to 26 goals.

The achievement moves him past former team-mate Paul Scholes in the standings, while Premier League rivals Frank Lampard of Chelsea and Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard remain close behind.


Wayne Rooney - 26
2. Paul Scholes - 24
3. Frank Lampard - 20
4. Steven Gerrard - 19
Rooney’s first goals in Europe’s elite club competition memorably came on his debut for United after signing from Everton in 2004. Then just 18, Rooney scored a hat-trick against Fenerbahce as his new side romped to a 6-2 win at Old Trafford.

Now in his eighth season as a United player, the England striker’s biggest goal in the competition came in last year’s final at Wembley, where he levelled the match against Barcelona before being unable to prevent a 3-1 defeat on the night.

His most successful season in Europe came in 2009-10, where he scored five times in seven matches as the Red Devils’ run was abruptly halted by Bayern Munich at the quarter-final stage to prevent him from adding to that tally.

While he is now the highest goalscorer from his own country, Rooney still has some way to go to match some other greats of the European game.

Raul continues to lead the way when it comes to all-time Champions League goals with 71, while Ruud van Nistelrooy sits second on 56. Thierry Henry is the only other player to have reached the half-century mark.