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Rating the seven players to score 50+ goals for Pep Guardiola teams

Manchester City’s Gabriel Jesus became the seventh player to score 50+ goals under the guidance of Pep Guardiola last weekend, the Brazilian international joining some illustrious names with a well-taken goal at Crystal Palace.

The Manchester City manager has coached some of world football’s biggest stars during trophy-laden spells at Barcelona, Bayern Munich and City, and we’ve decided to look back the most prolific goalscorers under the Spaniard’s management.

Here are our rankings of the seven players to have scored 50+ goals for Pep Guardiola teams…

 

Gabriel Jesus – Manchester City – 50 goals

No players are tipped for future stardom quite like Brazil’s best prospects, and Jesus was no different following his emergence as a teenager at Palmeiras.

His form in his native country saw City sign the forward for £27m in January 2017, where he has scored at a prolific rate despite spending the majority of his time in the Premier League as back-up to Sergio Aguero.

The 22-year-old has played his part in securing back-to-back league titles under Guardiola over the past two seasons, as well as completing English football’s first-ever domestic treble – scoring twice in their FA Cup final victory over Watford in May.

Jesus’ 50 goals have come in just 110 City appearances, and he is likely to become the club’s key attacking focal point as Aguero enters the twilight of his illustrious career at the Etihad.

Ranking: 6/10

Pedro – Barcelona – 58 goals

An underrated presence in arguably the best side ever seen in club football, Pedro would enjoy a first-team breakthrough during Guardiola’s treble-winning first season in charge at Barcelona before developing into a prolific scorer from the right flank.

Over next three seasons he would score 58 goals for Barcelona, including the opener in the club’s 2011 Champions League final victory over Manchester United at Wembley.

Such as his penchant for scoring on the big occasion, he became the first player in history to score in six different official club competitions during the 2009/10 season.

He would continue to score regularly following Guardiola’s 2012 departure, before moving to the Premier League with Chelsea in 2015.

Ranking: 7/10

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Robert Lewandowski – Bayern Munich – 67 goals

Undisputedly one of Europe’s finest finishers, the prolific Pole would join Guardiola a year after the coaches arrival in Bavaria, before firing the German giants to back-to-back Bundesliga successes.

In just two seasons under Guardiola’s management Lewandowski would score 67 goals, finishing as the division’s top scorer in his second campaign as consecutive titles were secured. That second season also saw a domestic double completed, with DFB-Pokal victory over Lewandowski’s former side Borussia Dortmund

Perhaps his most memorable moment under Guardiola came in a clash with Wolfsburg, coming on as half-time substitute with Bayern trailing to score five goals in just eight minutes and 59 seconds, giving Bayern a 5-1 lead and setting a number of Bundesliga records including fastest hat-trick and most goals by a substitute.

Ranking: 8/10

Raheem Sterling – Manchester City – 70 goals

Few, if any, players have witnessed such a transformative development under Guardiola’s tutelage than Raheem Sterling.

The England international’s finishing was once used a fierce criticism of his game, but in just over three seasons under Guardiola he has evolved into one of Europe’s finest attacking talents.

Sterling’s lightning pace and ability to ghost past players has always been a strength, though he is now combining those attributes with evasive, intelligent movement and a coolness in front of goal that has seen him improve his goal tally in each of Guardiola’s seasons in charge.

Already this season he has scored 12 goals in just 13 appearances, almost halfway to last season’s tally in the opening weeks of the campaign and he looks sure to rise up these rankings in the coming years.

Ranking: 8.5/10

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Thomas Muller – Bayern Munich – 78 goals

The German goalscorer would enjoy arguably the best period of his trophy-laden career under Guardiola, scoring 78 goals in just three seasons and winning a host of major honours.

A versatile forward who arrives into the box to score regularly, Muller helped Guardiola to three consecutive Bundesliga titles during his three-year spell in German football.

A consistent scorer and creator of goals, Muller’s finest season under the Spaniard’s reign came in his final season in charge at the Allianz Arena.

Partnered alongside Lewandowski, Muller would score 20 goals in the Bundesliga for the first time and 32 in all competitions – comfortably the highest tally of his career so far.

Ranking: 7.5/10

Sergio Aguero – Manchester City – 110 goals

There were many who thought Guardiola’s arrival at Manchester City could spell the end for Aguero at the Etihad, with the new manager publicly demanding more from the Argentina international and signing Gabriel Jesus to reinforce his forward options.

That uncertainty has disappeared over the past few seasons, as Aguero has tailored his game to meet Guardiola’s famously intense demands and become the most prolific goalscorer during his City reign.

Aguero has hit 110 goals for City in just over three seasons since Guardiola’s arrival, becoming the club’s all-time record goalscorer after netting against Napoli in the Champions League in 2017.

His 110 goals under Guardiola have come in just 184 appearances, helping the club to secure back-to-back league titles and become the first side in Premier League history to finish a season with 100 points.

Ranking: 8/10

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Lionel Messi – Barcelona – 211 goals

Comfortably ahead of the chasing pack is Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi, who thrived under Guardiola’s stewardship to become arguably the greatest footballer the game has ever seen.

In Guardiola’s four seasons in charge at the Nou Camp, Messi would help Barcelona to three consecutive La Liga titles and two Champions League triumphs, scoring a barely believable 211 goals in just 219 appearances, being awarded the Ballon d’Or in each season of the Spaniard’s reign at the Nou Camp.

The duo were the two key figures behind arguably club football’s greatest ever side, as Barcelona’s tiki-taka style conquered at both home and abroad.

Mesmerising to watch and an all-time great, no player has had a bigger single impact on Guardiola’s career.

Ranking: 10/10

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