KEY POINTS

  • Lionel Messi beat Cristiano Ronaldo in overall stats during all face-to-face matches 
  • Messi and Ronaldo faced each other 35 times in their career
  • Messi and Ronaldo were ranked as the top 2 greatest players of the last 25 years

Lionel Messi has outshined Cristiano Ronaldo in terms of individual stats during all their matches against each other.

Messi vs. Ronaldo is one of the greatest rivalries in sports history. The pair has dominated the sport for over a decade and even to this day, neither of them is showing signs of slowing down.

Throughout the course of their glorified careers, Messi and Ronaldo managed to earn an array of individual recognitions. Many pundits have tried to settle the debate as to who is the better player between the two icons but none of them has come up with a solid evidence which could end possibly put an end to the decade-long rivalry.

With the help of an extensive statistical analysis from  michelacosta.com, Give Me Sport was able to figure out at least who did better against each other. And based on the self-proclaimed largest and most comprehensive statistical study of Messi vs. Ronaldo on the internet, the Argentine superstar has beaten his Portuguese rival in terms of overall stats during all their face-to-face matches.

To sum it all up, Messi and Ronaldo have come into direct competition 35 times throughout their careers. Evidently, 30 of which happened during their “El Classico” days.

During the said number of clashes, the six-time Ballon d’Or winner has scored 22 goals, provided 11 assists and won 16 of the matches he's played against Ronaldo. Meanwhile, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner, managed to score 19 times, dish out 1 assist and won 10 games.

Based on the recorded stats, Messi is also slightly ahead of Ronaldo in terms of efficiency, scoring a goal every 138 minutes and 41 seconds. Ronaldo on the other hand, is still considered a productive goal scorer with 153 minutes and 19 seconds.

It also shows that Messi contributed an assist every 254 minutes and 15 seconds, while Ronaldo trails way behind with just 1 assist every 2,913 minutes or the equivalent of 2 days.

The Barcelona captain remains on top in terms of goal contribution. Messi registered an overall record of a goal contribution every 89 minutes and 44 seconds. The said rate puts Ronaldo behind with almost an hour who recorded a goal contribution every 145 minutes and 39 seconds.

Lionel Messi Cristiano Ronaldo Barcelona Real Madrid Lionel Messi, left, and Barcelona first meet Celta Vigo followed by Real Madrid and Cristiano Ronaldo, right, away against Sevilla. Photo: Reuters

Regardless of what numbers reveal about Messi and Ronaldo, the pair is still two of the best players in the world today. In fact, in a recent ranking of the greatest players of the last 25 years, Messi and Ronaldo topped the list. However, “Leo” edged “CR7” once again and was hailed the greatest player of the last two-and-a-half decades.