Cristiano Ronaldo vs Lionel Messi: top scorer, record, golden ball, the ultimate comparison

Who among Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi is the strongest? Here is an endless question whose answers are variable and often tinged with a partisan connotation. But on paper, what do the statistics say? Top scorer, best goal / number of matches ratio, record in club and national team, golden ball and personal awards … We take stock in this comparison.

Cristiano Ronaldo vs Lionel Messi

After the ranking of the best scorers of all time, we now focus on two players of the current generation who are part of this top. It is of course about Cristiano Ronaldo and of Lionel Messi. They have won almost everything individually and with their respective clubs. They have chained goals and have been giving us a show for several years. The two players are now in the home stretch of their careers, having each crossed the 30-year mark.

Cristiano Ronaldo vs Messi: club and national goals, ratio

Who is the top scorer between the two? This aspect must be considered in terms of the number of goals and the ratio. Two data are available. Those of the Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation which takes into account certain friendly matches in club on the one hand and the official statistics of FIFA compiled by the IFFSH which excludes friendly matches. As of August 6, 2021, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have reached 783 goals and 748 goals respectively. Their respective ratios are 0.73 and 0.80 goals per game.

Considering the number of raw goals, Ronaldo is ahead. But Messi has played fewer games and has a better ratio. Let’s break it all down according to the goals scored by club and national team. The breakdown presented below is the one taking into account official club matches. (cups, championship) and in non-standard equipment (friendly and official).

Cristiano Ronaldo

  • Sporting Portugal : 5 goals in 31 games
  • Manchester United : 118 goals in 292 games
  • Real Madrid : 450 goals in 436 games
  • Juventus : 101 goals in 133 games
  • National Selection : 109 goals in 179 games

CR7 has scored a total of 135 Champions League goals in 180 games for a ratio of 0.77 goals per game. To this day, he holds the record for goals scored in the history of the competition.

Lionel Messi

  • FC Barcelona : 672 goals in 788 games
  • National Selection : 76 goals in 151 games

Messi has scored 120 Champions League goals in 149 games. This represents a ratio of 0.8 goals per game. He is thus the second highest scorer in the history of the competition.

Cristiano Ronaldo vs Messi: ballon d’or name

Lionel Messi has won one more Golden Ball than Cristiano Ronaldo. It is 6 against 5 for the Portuguese. The last Ballon d’Or won by Messi was in 2019. The last for Ronaldo was in 2017.

  • Number of golden balls won by Cristiano Ronaldo : 5
  • Number of golden balls won by Lionel Messi : 6

Best Player in Europe (UEFA)

  • Cristiano Ronaldo : 4 (2008, 2014, 2016, 2017)
  • Lionel Messi : 3 (2009, 2011, 2015)

Best FIFA player of the year

  • Cristiano Ronaldo : 3 (2008, 2016, 2017)
  • Lionel Messi : 2 (2009, 2019)

Between 2010 and 2015, the award was replaced by the FIFA Ballon d’Or before returning to France Football in 2016. Considering the Ballon d’Or as the FIFA award for best player of the year, Messi would be at 7 against 5 for Ronaldo.

Honors in clubs and national team: number of trophies won in major competitions

Who among Messi and Ronaldo has the best collective record? The two players won everything in club. With their respective national teams, the trophy counter shows the number 2 for Ronaldo and 2 for Messi. Cristiano Ronaldo won EURO with Portugal in 2016 and the League of Nations in 2019. Messi won the Olympics in 2008 and the Copa America in 2021 with the Argentina team. Note that Messi also won the Under-20 World Cup with Argentina in 2005.

Cristiano Ronaldo

  • League wins: 7 (3 times English champion with Manchester United, 2 times Spanish champion with Real Madrid, but also twice Italian champion with Juventus)
  • Champions League winner: 5 (once with Manchester United and 4 times with Real Madrid)
  • Winner of the Club World Cup: 4 (once with Manchester United and 3 times with Real Madrid)
  • European Supercup winner: 2 (2014 and 2017 with Real Madrid)
  • Winner of the FA Cup: 1 (2004 with Manchester United)
  • Spanish Cup winner: 1 (2011 with Real Madrid)
  • Euro winner: 1 (2016 with Portugal)
  • Winner of the League of Nations : 1 (2019 with Portugal).

Lionel Messi

  • League wins (Spain): 10 (FC Barcelona)
  • Champions League winner: 5 (FC Barcelona)
  • Winner of the Club World Cup: 3 (FC Barcelona)
  • European Supercup winner: 3 (FC Barcelona)
  • Spanish Cup winner: 6 (FC Barcelona)
  • Olympic Games winner: 1 (2008 with Argentina)
  • Copa America winner: 1 (2021 with Argentina)

Also to be discovered: Which is the best club between Real and Barça in terms of direct confrontations and palmares?


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