Finding the back of the net since 1999: Claudio Pizarro is the oldest goalscorer in Bundesliga history. - © DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga
Finding the back of the net since 1999: Claudio Pizarro is the oldest goalscorer in Bundesliga history. - © DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga
bundesliga

Werder Bremen's Claudio Pizarro becomes the Bundesliga's oldest goalscorer

Claudio Pizarro became the oldest goalscorer in Bundesliga history with the equaliser in Werder Bremen's 1-1 draw with Hertha Berlin on Saturday.

Aged 40 years, four months and 13 days, Pizarro found the net with a deflected free-kick in the sixth minute of added time at the Olympic Stadium, after coming on as a second-half substitute for Johannes Eggestein.

Watch: Pizarro's record-breaking free-kick

The previous record was held by ex-Bremen midfielder Mirko Votava, who scored in a Bundesliga game against VfB Stuttgart at the age of 40 years, three months and one day, in August 1996.

Pizarro's milestone effort - his third in 17 Bundesliga appearances in 2018/19 - also means he has now registered at least one league goal every calendar year since joining Bayern Munich from Allianza Lima in August 1999.

"I'm very happy, very proud about [becoming the oldest scorer in Bundesliga history]," Pizarro told bundesliga.com after the game. "We had one opportunity at the end, and we scored. One point is very important."

Watch: Claudio Pizarro on his historic goal and an "important" point for Werder

Prolific and decorated

Pizarro's indefatigable journey is made up of two stints with record champions Bayern, four with current employers Bremen, one with Cologne and his English Premier League detour with Chelsea in 2007/08.

The seemingly bionic Peruvian has won six Bundesliga titles, six DFB Cups and the 2012/13 UEFA Champions League in that time, and is the Bundesliga’s leading non-German goalscorer with 195 goals in 463 top-flight outings.

Pizarro's former Bayern teammate Robert Lewandowski, 30, is next on the Bundesliga's all-time list of foreign goalscorers with 193 strikes in 278 appearances.

Watch: Pizarro's first 20 years of goalscoring

"Piza's a great player, very clever," Hertha striker Salomon Kalou - who played alongside the Werder legend at Chelsea - told bundesliga.com. "I played with him so I know he's a goal-getter. I knew what was coming when he came on. He changed the game. I'm happy for him. He deserves it. He's a great guy and a true professional."

“Deserved successor”

The man whose record Pizarro has broken, meanwhile, bears no ill will towards the Peruvian. Speaking to kicker, Votava, who is currently the assistant coach in Bremen’s reserves, called Pizarro “a great guy and a sporting phenomenon.

Even in his 60s, Mirko Votava still turns out for the Werder Bremen legends team. He wasn‘t quite that old though when he originally set his Bundesliga record, which had stood for over 20 years. - imago/Nordphoto

“I’m pleased for him and he knows that,” the now 62-year-old continued. “We’ve spoken a few times in recent weeks saying he’d break the record this season. I can’t think of a more deserved successor than Claudio.”