World Soccer: Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi

FIFA Ballon d’Or Awards Messi (5), Ronaldo (2)
The FIFA Ballon d’Or or also known as “The Golden Ball”, is an association award that’s quite new (a merger between the FIFA World Player of the Year award and the Ballon d’Or) and is awarded annually to the world’s best football player. Since it was introduced in 2010, only the two players have won the coveted prize. Messi currently leads Ronaldo with 4, winning the last 3, while Ronaldo trails at 2. It’s also worth noting that Messi’s lowest place finish is second while Ronaldo was noticeably absent during its inception.

European Golden Shoe Awards Ronaldo (4), Messi (3)
Awarded to Europe’s top goal-scorer, Ronaldo is currently the player with the most European Golden Shoe wins at 4, supplanting the previous holder, Messi, who has 3.

Head to Head Wins Messi (14), Ronaldo (9)
In 30 official matches spanning the La Liga and Champions League as well as friendly’s, Messi has won more games at 14 to Ronaldo’s 9 although both players are tied in goals with 17 apiece.

League Championships Messi (8), Ronaldo (4)
With 8 titles to his name – all captured in the prestigious Spanish League La Liga – Messi has double the championships that Ronaldo has. Ronaldo however, has 1 La Liga title himself in addition to 3 English Premier League titles, which is arguably the most competitive of all football leagues.

UEFA Seasonal Top Scorer Messi (5), Ronaldo (5)
Since the UEFA Champion League’s 2007-2008 season, the seasonal top scorer award has generally been contested only by the two players and are currently tied at 5 apiece. Ronaldo however, has more total goals at 93 while Messi sits at 83.

Number of Goals: League Ronaldo (347), Messi (312)
Ronaldo has a substantial 35-goal lead over Messi – however, 63 of his 347 made league goals were from penalty kicks. Omitting all penalties reduces the margin to just 5. Hat tricks are not that far either with Ronaldo at 31 and 26 for Messi.

Number of Assists on League Season Messi (126), Ronaldo (115)
With the Barcelona system predicated on passing, Messi leads in almost all head to heads in the Assists category (i.e. International, clubs), establishing a comfortable lead over Ronaldo. Messi is at 126 assists right now compared to Ronaldo’s 115.

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