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Cristiano Ronaldo vs Lionel Messi- A statistical comparison

Ronaldo

The question of who is better between the two legends of the game, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi has been on the minds of every football fan for the past decade and will continue in the future.

Who is the GOAT in football? Let us have a look at it statistically.

Club goals

Cristiano Ronaldo SeasonMessi
52002-03
62003-04
92004-051
122005-068
232006-0717
422007-0816
262008-0938
332009-1047
532010-1153
602011-1273
552012-1360
512013-1441
612014-1558
512015-1641
422016-1754
442017-1845
282018-1951
372019-2031
362020-2138
674Total672

A very close competition between the two legends of the game.  Ronaldo has scored two more club goals than Messi, but he has also played two more seasons than him.

While Ronaldo currently has more goals overall, Messi leads the chart in the scoring department, with a higher season average of 39, having hit a high of 73 goals in 2011-12.

Goal positions

GoalsLionel MessiCristiano Ronaldo
Free kick goals5355
Penalty goals90126
Hattrick Goals5456
Braces goals134127
Goals Scored in the Finals2919

From the above table, we can see that Cristiano leads the chart in Penalty goals, Free kick goals, Hattrick goals but when it comes to finals Messi leads the chart with a margin of 10. Both of them have always played a huge role in scoring goals for all the teams they have played for. 

World Cup stats

Cristiano RonaldoStatsLionel Messi
17Appearances19
7Goals6
0.4Goals per game0.3

Both of them have been the underperformers on the world cup stage. Ronaldo has scored more goals in the world Cup and that too in fewer appearances but he hasn’t taken his team to the finals yet. On the other hand, Messi took Argentina through the finals in the world cup 2014 and also won the gold ball during that tournament.  

International stats

Cristiano RonaldoStatsLionel Messi
173Appearances142
103Goals71
0.6Goals per game0.5

Ronaldo and Messi have almost similar records at the international level, though CR7 has the edge over Messi statistically he has also played two seasons more than Messi.

Ronaldo’s ultimate goal is to break Ali Daei’s 109 international goals record and could conceivably become the top international goalscorer of all time before he hangs up his boots. Currently, Messi is Argentina’s top goalscorer of all time, surpassing Gabriel Batistuta some years ago.

Titles

Cristiano RonaldoCompetitionLionel Messi
0World Cup0
1European Championship / Copa America0
0Olympics1
7League titles10
5Champions League4
4Club World Cup3
4National Cups*7

Both of them have almost won similar trophy counts, but Messi edges when it comes to league titles, having won La Liga 10 times with Barcelona. Cristiano has seven league titles, but unlike Messi, he can claim to have won the league in three different countries. In the Champions League,  ‘Mr. Champions League’ aka Ronaldo has an edge over Messi.

Ronaldo has also enjoyed notable success on the international stage, winning the European Championship and the UEFA Nations League.