5 Youngest Goalscorers In EURO History: Wayne Rooney Is In 2nd Place

England Wayne Rooney EURO
England Wayne Rooney EURO

The European Championship, affectionately dubbed EURO, is the continent’s most prestigious cup competition. Scoring in the competition is a guaranteed way of attracting eyeballs, which is why every ambitious player constantly looks for opportunities to apply the all-important final touch. Youngsters are even more drawn to the dream of scoring in EUROs, as it is a surefire way to get on the map and draw attention from the biggest clubs in the world. However, scoring in EUROs is easier said than done, with only a handful of teenagers managing it since the tournament’s inception in 1958.

Continue reading to check out the five youngest players in history to have scored in the European Championships.

#5 Arda Guler (Turkiye) – 19 years, 114 days

Arda Guler Was One Of The Best Performers Of UEFA EURO Matchday 1
Arda Guler Scored A Goal Of The Tournament Contender Against Georgia

Turkish teen sensation Arda Guler made history on his European Championship debut against Georgia on June 18. Aged 19 years and 114 days, the Real Madrid youngster scored a cracker of a goal, helping the Turks to a 3-1 victory.

Guler picked up the ball about 30 yards away from goal, cut in from the right flank, and dispatched a cracker of a shot with his left foot. The ball swerved magnificently in the air to nestle into the top-left corner of Georgia’s goal. With the stunner, Guler not only became one of the youngest-ever scorers in EURO history but also the youngest player to score on their European Championship debut.

#4 Dragan Stojkovic (Yugoslavia) – 19 years, 108 days

Dragan Stojkovic In Action For Yugoslavia
Dragan Stojkovic Scored His First EURO Goal From The Penalty Spot

Dragan Stojkovic, who is managing Serbia in EURO 2024, is the fourth-highest scorer in the competition’s history. He was 19 years and 108 days old when he scored for Yugoslavia in a 3-2 defeat to France in Group 1 of UEFA EURO 1984. Stojkovic scored his only goal of the tournament in the 84th minute from the penalty spot.

Yugoslavia failed to amass even a single point in their group, losing not only to France but also to Denmark and Belgium. Unable to open their account, they endured a disappointing group-stage exit.

#3 Renato Sanches (Portugal) – 18 years, 317 days

Renato Sanches Is One Of The Youngest Scorers In EURO History
Renato Sanches Scored A Gem Of A Goal Against Poland

Renato Sanches was the talk of the town before Portugal began their journey in EURO 2016. And over the following month, he proved why he deserved every bit of attention he got. The then-teenager produced sensational performances on cue, which helped Os Navegadores dread the dangerous EURO waters and claim their first-ever major title at France’s expense in the final.

Sanches also reached a bit of a personal milestone along the way, becoming the third-youngest scorer in EURO history. He scored a spectacular goal for Portugal in the quarter-finals against Poland, canceling out Robert Lewandowski’s opener. Receiving the ball just outside the area, Sanches cut onto his left foot, came inside, and let fly from the right side of the ‘D’. The ball swerved beautifully and settled into the bottom-right corner. The goal from the 18-year-and-317-day-old allowed Portugal to hold Poland at 1-1 and then beat them on penalties.

#2 Wayne Rooney (England) – 18 years, 237 days

Wayne Rooney Is One Of The Youngest EURO Scorers
Wayne Rooney Scored A Brace Against Switzerland

Then 18-year-old Wayne Rooney made his EURO debut for England in 2004. His tournament debut did not go according to plan as France beat the Three Lions 2-1 in the tournament opener. However, Rooney turned it around fantastically on Matchday 2, scoring a stellar brace in a 3-0 victory over Switzerland. The Manchester United icon was only 18 years and 237 days old at the time.

Rooney scored the opener in the 23rd minute, turning Michael Owen’s cross into the back of the net from close range. He doubled his money in the 75th minute, dispatching a thunderous drive from the edge of the area. Rooney lost his crown for the youngest-ever scorer just a few days later, but he remains the youngest player to score a brace in EUROs.

#1 Johan Vonlanthen (Switzerland) – 18 years, 141 days

Johan Vonlanthen Is The Youngest Goalscorer In EURO History
Johan Vonlanthen Scored A Stunning Equalizer Against France

Four days after Wayne Rooney became EURO’s youngest-ever scorer, Switzerland teen Johan Volanthen replaced him at the summit. Aged only 18 years and 141 days, Volanthen scored a fine equalizer against Zinedine Zidane’s France in their Group B encounter, booking a place in the history books.

Volanthen made a diagonal run into the box from the left, latched on to a gem of a through ball from Ricardo Cabanas, and applied a sumptuous finish to find the bottom-left corner of the French goal. Unfortunately for the then-teenager, France ultimately came out on top, with Thierry Henry bagging a second-half brace to claim a 3-1 win.

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