In the Champions League top scorer competition, Benzema has surpassed Lewa.

Manchester City’s exciting 4-3 victory against Real Madrid kicked off the Champions League semi-final stage, as the race to be the competition’s top scorer took a pivotal turn on an action-packed night at the Etihad.

Karim Benzema’s daring Panenka overtook long-time leader Robert Lewandowski at the top of the goalscoring statistics.

While winning the legendary trophy will be the top priority for players and teams, ending with the most goals is an honor that any forward would be proud of.

Continue reading as we identify the current leaders and analyze who is best positioned to ascend the throne.

Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema (14 goals)
Real Madrid forward Karim Benzema has been in blistering form in the Champions League knockout stages, scoring hat-tricks against PSG and Chelsea before his brace versus City.

Carlo Ancelotti’s team was on the verge of being eliminated from this year’s championship at the hands of PSG before their No9 stole center stage.

With less than half an hour to go and Los Blancos trailing 2-0 on aggregate, the Los Blancos striker sprang into life, scoring a spectacular hat-trick in only 17 minutes to seal a dramatic comeback triumph.

The 34-year-old then followed up his incredible performance with another treble, this time at Stamford Bridge, giving the LaLiga table-toppers a 3-1 lead after the first leg.

Despite winning the Champions League four times, Benzema has never finished the season as the top scorer.

If Ancelotti’s team goes all the way this time, their star striker has a good chance of winning the prize award.

Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski will not be able to add to his total after losing in the quarter-finals against Villarreal, but the Pole has had another excellent season in Europe’s top club competition.

The 33-year-old was the architect of the Bavarians’ last-16 second-leg success over FC Salzburg, scoring a hat-trick in the first half to put Julian Nagelsmann’s men on pace for a 7-1 win on the night, 8-2 on aggregate.

That outstanding performance had established the Bundesliga star as a strong contender for a second Champions League top scorer award.

However, a 2-1 aggregate loss to the Yellow Submarine in the final eight eliminated his chances of adding to his 13 strikes.

Sebastien Haller’s first Champions League campaign was memorable, but it came to an end as Ajax lost 1-0 at home to Benfica in the last-16 second leg.

Haller scored his 11th goal of the season in the 2-2 first-leg draw in Lisbon, after scoring 10 goals in six games in the group stage.

The Ivory Coast international became the competition’s fastest player to score ten or more goals.

The 27-year-old also became only the second man, after Cristiano Ronaldo, to score in all six group stage matches.

The former West Ham striker will take many great memories from his record-breaking personal performance, but he will have to wait until next season to add to his goal count.

Mohamed Salah was unhappy after failing to score in Liverpool’s quarter-final match against Benfica, but he will have another chance to impress against Villarreal in the semi-finals.

The Reds are favorites to beat Unai Emery’s team and would expect their Egyptian star to make an impact against the LaLiga side.

The 29-year-old did score in the last-16 first-leg win at Inter Milan, after scoring a match-winning double in a 3-2 win against Atletico Madrid in the group stage.

Jurgen Klopp’s men will be looking to reclaim the title they last won in 2019 and will need Salah to be as influential now as he was during that successful season if they are to do so.

The Merseysiders’ No.11 will be trying to surpass his best-ever tally of 10 in the tournament to win the individual prize, and with his success this season, you wouldn’t bet against him doing so.

RB Leipzig’s Christopher Nkunku (seven objectives)
Christopher Nkunku dropped out of contention after RB Leipzig was eliminated in the group round, but his goal-scoring exploits make him deserving of a mention.

The French attacker scored seven goals in six games, which is even more astounding given that he rarely plays as an out-and-out striker for the Bundesliga club.

The 24-year-old is emerging into one of Europe’s most fascinating talents, capable of playing on the left, right, or in attacking midfield.

 

‘There are no words!’ – Vinicius after being blown away by Benzema after scoring twice at Manchester City.

Vinicius Junior claims “there are no words” to describe Karim Benzema’s form as he predicts his Real Madrid teammate will win the Ballon d’Or this year.

Benzema scored twice in Real Madrid’s 4-3 loss to Manchester City in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final at the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday.

The first was a tricky twisting finish to bring Madrid back into the game after falling behind 2-0, and the second was a calm Panenka penalty late in the game to keep the tie alive.

He now has 41 goals in as many games for Los Blancos this season, which is only surpassed by Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski (48 in 43) among Europe’s top five leagues.

After Cristiano Ronaldo, Ferenc Puskas, Alfredo Di Stefano, and Hugo Sanchez, the 34-year-old became the fifth Madrid player to score more than 40 goals in a single season.

Benzema also tops the Champions League scoring records this season with 14, one more than Lewandowski, whose Bayern Munich team was eliminated in the quarter-finals by Villarreal.

Vinicius believes Benzema should win the Ballon d’Or in 2022, despite finishing behind Lionel Messi, Lewandowski, and Jorginho last year.

“There are no words to describe Benzema’s performance,” Vinicius stated. “He is deserving of the Ballon d’Or.

“I hope my brother Benzema wins La Liga, the Champions League, and the Ballon d’Or.”

Benzema scored a hat-trick in the second leg of the last-16 triumph over PSG and another treble in the first leg of the quarter-final win against Chelsea.

Only once in a single Champions League season has he scored more than nine goals in the knockout stages, with Cristiano Ronaldo scoring ten in the 2016-17 season?

Vinicius is not alone in his support for Benzema, with former teammate Mesut Ozil tweeting on Tuesday, “Give my boy Benzi the Ballon D’Or.”

Rio Ferdinand, an ex-Manchester United defender, concurred with the judgment, citing the tweet and adding the word “Facts.”

Ferdinand’s post was liked by Benzema, whose chances of being named the world’s best player could be boosted if France wins the World Cup in December.

Rather than basking in his spectacular form, the prolific striker acknowledges that his team still has a lot of work to do if they want to move further in this season’s competition.

“A defeat is never pleasant, but we are enthusiastic about this Champions League, and the most important thing is that we never give up,” he told Movistar+.

“We have to go to the Bernabeu now, and we need the fans to do something wonderful, which is to win.

“We went into the game lacking confidence, which is what happens when you play a team like Manchester City. A little bit of everything was missing in this game.”

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