Miles Under the Belt! The 15 Footballers Who Have Travelled the Most Distance in Their Careers

The boffins at have come out with a rather interesting list, which shows how far footballers have to travel* within their careers as part of active participants in the sport. The culmination of league travel, national cup travel, international club travel and national team travel gives an overall total of how much a player has needed to move around the globe throughout his years as a football player. With the top 15 documented below, let's begin the count down... *at the time of...

Robert Lewandowski

Total career travel: 243,691 km

The Bayern Munich frontman has only ever played club football in his native Poland and in Germany, but with both Borussia Dortmund and his current club, the 28-year-old has moved around a lot as part of Champions League travel requirements. 

Having been part of the Polish national team set up since 2008, Lewa has also been on countless planes in the name of the Eastern European country.  

Luis Suarez

Total career travel: 331,901 km

There's a big jump to 14th place with Suarez having travelled nearly 100,000 km more than Lewandowski during his career. 

Now at Barcelona, the 30-year-old has come a long way from his Montevideo beginnings in his native Uruguay, lining out for FC Gronigen and Ajax in the Eredivisie and Liverpool in the Premier League. 

Thomas Muller

Total career travel: 333,949 km

Having been part of the Bayern Munich first team set up since he was 19-years-old, it comes as no surprise that Thomas Muller has a place in the top 15. 

The German forward also racks up the miles from his involvement in the national team, where he has already amassed 85 caps and still has a chance of becoming the top goalscorer in World Cup history. 

Robin van Persie

Total career travel: 362,832 km

The mercurial Dutchman travelled almost as much for European duties as he did during the domestic seasons, with former clubs Feyenoord, Arsenal and Manchester United, as well as current side Fenerbahce, all consistently competing on a continental basis during the striker's lengthy career. 


Total career travel: 386,448 km

By far the youngest player in the list, the 25-year-old Neymar will undoubtedly reach the summit if he continues his career for another decade or so. 

The Brazilian skipper is closing in on the 400,000km mark in terms of distance travelled in his career, with Barcelona's participation in the Champions League and Club World Cup causing the forward to reach all four corners of the world. 

Wayne Rooney

Total career travel: 392,615 km

Creeping into the top ten is Manchester United and England skipper Wayne Rooney. 

Despite not being able to hold down a first team spot for neither club nor country anymore, the forward's many years in the top flight easily put the former Everton academy graduate in the upper echelon of well-travelled footballers. 

Karim Benzema

Total career travel: 503,275 km

With Benzema breaking into the Lyon first team at the age of 17, the French international striker has remained at the very top ever since. 

Benzema has now led the line for Real Madrid for 8 years and has been everywhere with Los Blancos, as well as travelling the globe with Les Bleus before his very public dismissal from the French national side. 

Carlos Tevez

Total career travel: 618,871 km

The veteran striker, who is now plying his trade in China with Shanghai Shenhua, played for 5 separate clubs in between his two spells with Boca Juniors. Tevez was also a constant feature of the Argentinian national team for years, clocking up a mileage of over 115,000km as part of his duty for La Albiceleste.

Fernando Torres

Total career travel: 621,513 km

After years in the Premier League, Fernando Torres returned to boyhood club Ateltico Madrid in 2015 via a short loan spell with AC Milan. 

Now 33 years of age, the Spanish striker was considered one of the wold's best during his heyday and travelled across Europe with both Liverpool and Chelsea, as well as with the Spanish national side. 

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Total career travel: 667,211 km

Zlatan, a seasoned professional since 1999, was always going to feature in a list of the sort. 

The Manchester United striker has been playing in Europe, in addition to domestic competitions, in almost every season that he's played, while also touring the world as captain of the Swedish national side. 

Francesco Totti

Total career travel: 759,620 km

The grandfather of football, Francesco Totti is still around, despite turning 40 last year. 

Roma's ultimate one-club man remains involved in first team affairs, despite making his debut for the team from the Italian capital back in 1992. An international with the Azzurri for many years, Totti's career is slowing down now, but his air mile count remains near the top. 

Lionel Messi

Total career travel: 833,795 km

Messi still has time to eventually hit the top spot in terms of total career travel, but he will settle for 4th spot for the time being. 

Periodical commuting from Barcelona to his native Argentina, in addition to the constant travelling associated with playing for the Blaugrana, explains the magician's lofty position. 

Cristiano Ronaldo

Total career travel: 877,567 km

Like many of the players on this list, Cristiano Ronaldo has been playing at the highest level ever since he made his professional debut. The 32-year-old superstar has travelled more than anyone (62,678 km) in the category of domestic cup competitions, although he only picks up the bronze medal cumulatively. 


Total career travel: 892,161 km

The legendary Spanish midfielder quit Barcelona after 17 trophy-laden years, opting to move to the Middle East, where he now plays for Al-Sadd in the Qatari Stars League. 

During his days in Catalonia though, Xavi was always on the move and his 131,871 km travelled with the Spanish national side is more than any other player in world football. 

Iker Casillas

Total career travel: 908,281 km

After 16 years of service to Real Madrid, Casillas went in search of pastures new and signed for Portuguese side Porto. 

The only man to breach the 900,000km milestone in distance travelled, the Spanish stopper is still going strong at the age of 35 and could well put another few thousand miles under his belt before he calls it a day.

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