In a game which is beautiful for its subtleties and complexity, goal-scoring is one of the few tangible statistics we can use to rank players in world football.
This is my list of the 10 greatest goalscorers of the last 20 years. To compile this list I first drew up a shortlist of the players with the best goals per game ratio over the last two decades. Then came the fun bit as I gave added consideration to other factors.
Longevity was the first of these. Over what length of time has a player provided a consistent threat in front of goal?
Great players such as Marco Van Basten miss out because of this. He had an incredible career, but he only played two seasons out of the last 20.
I've also accounted for the quality of the league a player competes in. For example, Henrik Larsson holds a superb record and was a top class striker but spent his prime years playing in the relatively weak SPL.
Finally, keep in mind this is NOT a list of the 10 greatest forwards. Players make the cut purely on the basis of their goal-scoring prowess, as opposed to overall talent as a footballer.
Keep in mind also that international goals as well as club performance is considered.