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Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo stats: CR7 injured for Al Nassr vs Inter Miami but which GOAT has the all-time best career numbers?

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have dominated world football for the past two decades and enjoyed some historic battles over the years. 

Messi has won everything available to him, after completing football with a World Cup triumph at the 2022 tournament in Qatar.

Ronaldo on the other hand has scored more career goals and has competed in multiple different European leagues.

An injury to Ronaldo has deprived us of a potential final showdown between the pair, with Al Nassr hosting Inter Miami on Thursday, February 1.

But which player dominates the stats? The Sporting News has every career record you may wish to know. 

MORE: Buy tickets for Inter Miami vs Al Nassr

Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo all-time career stats

The following stats exclude club friendlies and were updated on January 23, 2024.

Lionel Messi   Cristiano Ronaldo
1047 Games 1204
821 Goals 873
361 Assists 9
57 Hat-tricks 63
108 Penalties* 161

*not including shootouts

Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo: Most trophies won

Messi and Ronaldo have collected an incredible number of trophies throughout their careers, rewarding their excellence while also benefitting from playing for successful teams. Their individual accomplishments are also astonishing, as they consistently battled one another for the coveted title of the best player in the world each season.

The types of trophies won reflect the dominance of the teams they have been part of. Barcelona’s stronghold domestically in Spain greatly contributed to Messi’s accumulation of domestic honours, while Real Madrid’s superiority in the Champions League during Cristiano’s tenure with the club added to his impressive list of achievements.

Following the end of their European careers, both players have continued to add to their medal collections. Messi guided Inter Miami to the 2023 Leagues Cup title, meanwhile, Ronaldo played a pivotal role in helping Al Nassr secure the Arab Club Champions Cup.

Honour Messi Ronaldo
Domestic leagues 12 7
Domestic cups 15 12
International club tournaments 11 12
International tournaments 1 2
Olympics 1 0
Ballon d’Or 8 5
FIFA World Player of the Year 1 1
The Best FIFA Men’s Player 3 2
World Cup Golden Ball 2 0
European Golden Shoe 6 4

Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo head-to-head record

After plenty of historic contests in El Clasico between the two superstars, Thursday’s Riyadh Season Cup match will be the second consecutive exhibition game between the pair. 

Messi and Ronaldo have squared off a combined 36 times in competitive matches for club and country. Throughout Ronaldo’s career, the only player he has played against as much is Leo’s long-time Barcelona ally Andres Iniesta. However, Messi has crossed paths with three other opponents more frequently: Sergio Ramos, Diego Godin, and Karim Benzema.

The beginning of their rivalry came in 2008 as Manchester United travelled to Camp Nou to face Barcelona in the Champions League semi-finals. That match ended in a 0-0 draw as Ronaldo skied a penalty but United went on to win the tie back at Old Trafford with a 1-0 victory thanks to a magnificent strike from Paul Scholes. 

The pair have never met for their international sides in a competitive fixture, splitting a pair of friendly encounters between them.

Although Ronaldo won the individual battle with two goals for the Riyadh Season Team in an exhibition against Paris Saint-Germain, Messi prevailed overall and found the net himself in a 5-4 victory.

Competition Games  Messi wins Ronaldo wins Draws Messi goals Ronaldo goals
La Liga 18 10 4 4 12 9
Champions League 6 2 2 2 3 2
Copa del Rey 5 1 2 2 0 5
Spanish Super Cup 5 2 2 1 6 4
International Friendlies 2 1 1 0 1 1
Exhibition games 1 1 0 0 1 2
Total 37 17 11 9 23 23

Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo head-to-head record every game

Date Competition Match Result Messi Ronaldo
Jan. 19. 2023 Exhibition Riyadh Season Team – PSG 4-5 1 goal 2 goals
Dec. 8, 2020 Champions League Barcelona – Juventus 0-3 2 goals
May 6, 2018 La Liga Barcelona – Real Madrid 2-2 1 goal 1 goal
Dec. 23, 2017 La Liga Real Madrid – Barcelona 0-3 1 goal, 1 assist
Aug. 13, 2017 Supercopa Barcelona – Real Madrid 1-3 1 goal 1 goal
Apr. 23, 2017 La Liga Real Madrid – Barcelona 2-3 2 goals
Dec. 3, 2016 La Liga Barcelona – Real Madrid 1-1
Apr. 2, 2016 La Liga Barcelona – Real Madrid 1-2 1 goal
Nov. 21, 2015 La Liga Real Madrid – Barcelona 0-4
Mar. 22, 2015 La Liga Barcelona – Real Madrid 2-1 1 assist 1 goal
Nov. 18, 2014 Int. friendly Argentina – Portugal 0-1
Oct. 25, 2014 La Liga Real Madrid – Barcelona 3-1 1 goal
Mar. 23, 2014 La Liga Real Madrid – Barcelona 3-4 3 goals 1 goal
Oct. 26, 2013 La Liga Barcelona – Real Madrid 2-1 1 assist
Mar. 2, 2013 La Liga Real Madrid – Barcelona 2-1 1 goal
Feb. 26, 2013 Copa del Rey Barcelona – Real Madrid 1-3 2 goals
Jan. 30, 2013 Copa del Rey Real Madrid – Barcelona 1-1 1 assist
Oct. 7, 2012 La Liga Barcelona – Real Madrid 2-2 2 goals 2 goals
Aug. 29, 2012 Supercopa Real Madrid – Barcelona 2-1 1 goal 1 goal
Aug. 22, 2012 Supercopa Barcelona – Real Madrid 3-2 1 goal 1 goal
Apr. 21, 2012 La Liga Barcelona – Real Madrid 1-2 1 goal
Jan. 25, 2012 Copa del Rey Barcelona – Real Madrid 2-2 1 assist 1 goal
Jan. 18, 2012 Copa del Rey Real Madrid – Barcelona 1-2 1 assist 1 goal
Dec. 10, 2011 La Liga Real Madrid – Barcelona 1-3 1 assist
Aug. 17, 2011 Supercopa Barcelona – Real Madrid 3-2 2 goals, 1 assist 1 goal
Aug. 14, 2011 Supercopa Real Madrid – Barcelona 2-2 1 goal, 1 assist
May 3, 2011 Champions League Barcelona – Real Madrid 1-1
Apr. 27, 2011 Champions League Real Madrid – Barcelona 0-2 2 goals
Apr. 20, 2011 Copa del Rey Barcelona – Real Madrid (Neutral Stadium) 0-1 1 goal
Apr. 16, 2011 La Liga Real Madrid – Barcelona 1-1 1 goal 1 goal
Feb, 9, 2011 Int. friendly Argentina – Portugal  2-1 1 goal 1 goal
Nov. 29, 2010 La Liga Barcelona – Real Madrid 5-0 2 assists
Apr. 10, 2010 La Liga Real Madrid – Barcelona 0-2 1 goal
Nov. 29, 2009 La Liga Barcelona – Real Madrid 1-0
May 27, 2009 Champions League Man United – Barcelona (Neutral) 2-0 1 goal
Apr. 29, 2008 Champions League Man United – Barcelona 1-0
Apr. 23, 2008 Champions League Barcelona – Man United 0-0 (1 missed penalty)
TOTAL       18 wins
24 goals
12 wins
24 goals

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