Many Nigerian and African football lovers are fans of the English Premier League. In truth, the English Premier League generates quality football. So it’s not surprising that it has fans in Africa and other continents. However, the English Premier League is popular in Nigeria and Africa because many Nigerian and African players play there.
African players have played in the English Premier League, African players are playing in the English Premier League, and African players will continue to play in the English Premier league. But who is the highest-scoring African player in the premier league? That’s the question many fans want to know.
This post provides the answer as we list the top-scoring African players in the Premier League. Check out the list below:
1. Mohammed Salah
The highest-scoring African player in the Premier League is Mohammed Salah, the Egyptian who currently plays for Liverpool FC. Salah currently has more than 125 goals in the Premier League, with a few coming from his first time in league with Chelsea FC.
Since he’s still an active player and scoring – it’s impossible that anyone will soon overthrow Salah as the highest-scoring African in the Premier League. In fact, he’s one of the only three African players to score over a hundred goals in the Premier League and the only one still playing in the league.
Mohamed Salah is one of the best and most productive strikers in the world and has won numerous titles with Liverpool. Since moving to the club from AS Roma in 2017, the Egyptian has been an unstoppable goal scorer, winning the Premier League, Champions League, FIFA Club World Cup, Emirates FA Cup, UEFA Super Cup, Carabao Cup, and FA Community Shield.
During the 2021–22 season, he reached the third Champions League final of his Liverpool career, passing the 250 appearances and 150 goal milestones. Also, he entered the top 10 of the club’s all-time scorers list. During this campaign, he also won the FA and Carabao Cup and finished second in the Premier League.
2. Sadio Mane
Number two on this list of top-scoring African players in the Premier League is another player who played for Liverpool. Sadio Mane scored a total of 111 goals in the league in 263 games. His goals were not only in the Liverpool shirt but also Southampton’s.
Mane left Liverpool FC in mid-2022 for Bayern Munchen. At 30 years, it’s uncertain if the forward will ever return to the league before he retires. If he does, he could increase his tally and perhaps come first on this list. If he doesn’t, he will nevertheless remain second on this list for a long time.
Since making his debut for Senegal in 2012, Mané has played 93 times and scored 34 goals, placing him third all-time in both appearances and goals for his country. In addition to 2015, 2017, 2019, and 2021 Africa Cup of Nations, he represented Senegal at the 2012 Olympic Games.
Mané led Senegal to a runner-up position in the 2019 tournament, and a year later, he has voted African Footballer of the Year. Senegal won their first Africa Cup of Nations championship in 2021 when Mané scored the winning penalty kick in the shootout and was named Player of the Tournament. He received the African Player of the Year for a second time in 2022.
3. Didier Drogba
Didier Drogba, the prolific striker who helped Chelsea FC win their first UEFA Champions League trophy, has 104 goals in the English Premier. He, Salah, and Mane are the only three players to cross the hundred-goal mark. But Drogba was the first and the only person to do it with one club. All his goals in the Premier League came for Chelsea in 254 games.
For a long time, Drogba was the highest-scoring African in the history of the Premier League. During his days, he won the League Golden Boot award two times. It was only recently that Salah, and then Mane, surpassed him.
Across all competitions, Drogba became the fourth-highest scorer in Chelsea’s history after tallying 157 goals in 341 games throughout his initial eight-year stay. He left and returned for one more season, during which he scored another seven goals in 40 games.
The most prosperous period in the club’s history was made possible by his astounding 36 goals in European play, a Chelsea record, and his incredible nine goals in nine cup finals.
He won the Champions League, the FA Cup, the League Cup, and four Premier Leagues. Drogba had a strong case for being dubbed the best centre-forward in the world throughout his Chelsea tenure.
4. Emmanuel Adebayo
Here’s the first Arsenal player to make this list of top-scoring African players in the Premier League. Emmanuel Adebayo, from Togo, almost hit the hundred-goal mark as he scored 97 in 242 games. But all his goals were not for Arsenal. He also played and scored for Manchester City, Tottenham, and Crystal Palace.
Emmanuel Adebayo played in the premier league for about ten years, from 2006 to 2016. He was more popular and prolific during his days at Arsenal. His days at Manchester City, Tottenham, and Crystal Palace, were not so glorious, but he did find the back of the net.
While playing for Arsenal, he won the 2008 African Footballer of the Year award. Adebayor represented Togo at the nation’s first and only World Cup appearance, the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany.
He left the Togo national team in January 2010 after the team bus came under gunfire while traveling to the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations in Angola. He joined the Togo team once more in 2013 for the African Cup of Nations in South Africa, where he assisted them in reaching the quarterfinals. With 32 goals, he now holds the record for most goals for the Togo national team.
5. Yakubu Aiyegbeni
All ye Nigerian football fans, here’s your player: Yakubu Aiyegbeni. Yakubu, who played for Portsmouth, Middlesbrough, Everton, and Blackburn – was just five goals short of a hundred. He found the net 95 times in the English Premier League in 252 appearances.
The Yak, as he’s called, drew attention in England with his performance for Maccabi Haifa in the UEFA Champions League in the 2002–2003 season. Subsequently, he made a loan move to Portsmouth, which turned into a permanent one in 2003 after they were promoted to the Premier League.
He is Nigeria’s third-highest scorer in the team’s history and has played for them in four finals of the African Cup of Nations finals, the 2010 FIFA World Cup, and the Summer Olympics in 2000.
In the final Group game of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, Yakubu famously missed an open goal from three yards against South Korea. He later tied the game with a penalty. However, more was needed for Nigeria to advance past the group stage.
Perhaps Nigerians will never forget Yakubu for his miss in the 2010 World Cup. But he will also be remembered as the top-scoring Nigerian player in English Premier League History.
6. Riyad Mahrez
Riyad Mahrez has been sensational from Leicester to Manchester City. Although he plays mainly as a winger and not a striker, the Algerian has managed to net 78 goals for Manchester City. Still active, his tally will definitely be more than 78 by the time he eventually leaves the English Premier League.
Mahrez started out as a young athlete for the French team AAS Sarcelles. He made his professional debut in 2009 with Quimper, where he played for just one season before transferring to Le Havre. At Le Havre, he spent a total of three years, initially with the reserve team and later as a regular in the main squad.
Mahrez joined Leicester City in January 2014, and by the conclusion of his first season, he had helped them advance to the Premier League and win the Championship.
In July 2018, Riyad Mahrez joined Manchester City, leaving Leicester City. Like at Leicester City, he won the Premier League with Manchester City in his debut season. That season, Mahrez contributed 12 goals and 12 assists throughout the campaign and earned medals for the Carabao Cup, FA Cup, and Community Shield.
7. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
Aubameyang is perhaps the fastest-scoring African player in the premier league. The Gabonese has 69 goals in just 134 appearances, playing for Arsenal and Chelsea. This is, however, not surprising.
Before joining Arsenal in 2018, everyone knew of Aubameyang’s scoring prowess in the Bundesliga with Dortmund. In particular, he is the highest-scoring African in the German League.
Aubameyang, in 2013, joined Borussia Dortmund. He concluded the 2016–17 season as the league’s top scorer at the club and took home a DFB-Pokal. He is also the club’s seventh-highest goalscorer of all time.
In 2018, Aubameyang became the most expensive Gabonese player in history when he joined Arsenal in a deal of £56 million, setting a new club record for association football transfers.
He ended the 2018–19 season as the league’s joint-top goalscorer while playing for Arsenal, where he also won an FA Cup. Aubameyang joined Barcelona in 2022 after his contract with Arsenal was mutually terminated.
He eventually signed for Chelsea at the close of the summer transfer window and moved back to the Premier League. So, he’s not done with 69 goals. He can – and he will – score more.
8. Yaya Toure
Yaya Toure played in the Premier League as a midfielder for Manchester City. He is regarded as one of the greatest midfielders ever, and the fact that he appears on this list dominated by strikers is proof.
Toure joined Manchester City from FC Barcelona. And in 230 games, he scored 62 goals. That he can score many goals is a result of his wanting to be a striker during his youth. However, his spell at FC Barcelona formed him into an avid playmaker.
Toure joined City in July 2010 for what was reported to be £24 million. He was paired with his older brother Kolo Toure and given the squad number 42, which is the opposite of the 24 he had worn at Barcelona.
In the season he joined, Manchester City finally won a major trophy after a 35-year wait. These trophies were thanks to a string of successful goals by the Ivorian, including victories in the FA Cup semi-final against Manchester United and the final against Stoke City.
Toure cemented his position in the team during the 2011–12 campaign. He was an essential member of the squad that won Manchester City’s first league title in 44 years.
9. Nwankwo Kanu
At number nine, we have the Nigerian football legend, Nwankwo Kanu. Kanu played for Arsenal, West Brom, and Portsmouth in the Premier League. But, everyone knows it was at Arsenal where he made his name.
In a total of 237 games in the Premier League, Kanu scored 54 goals. Papilo, as he’s called, won the premier league twice with Arsenal. Notably, he was part of the Arsenal squad that finished the 2003/04 season unbeaten. He was an Invincible.
10. Efan Ekoku
Efan Ekoku closes this list of top scoring African players in the premier league. Unlike the others on this list, Ekoku never played for the big clubs. He only played for Wimbledon and Norwich City.
Yet, he put the ball in the back of the net 52 times in 160 games. Quite prolific!