Lionel Messi vs. Cristiano Ronaldo: Who is the More Skilled Soccer Player?

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Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are the world’s two best soccer players, there’s no doubt about that. They have an army of fans supporting and cheering for them whenever Barcelona plays against Juventus. Whenever the teams meet, it is as much of a clash between the two best soccer players in the world, as it is between the two teams. Both players deserve this attention as they possess a unique set of soccer skills.

What we are interested in is to determine which player deserves more fame or credit as the best player ever. Who is actually more skilled? Answering this question is not going to be easy, but we intend to do it by considering some official stats presented in the infographic below created by

Soccer Skills and Career Highlights

We can all agree that both Messi and Ronaldo are highly-skilled football/soccer players. There are not many other players out there that can play on par with them. Of course, there are certain areas in which they are much better than in others.

For example, Ronaldo is a much better player when it comes to heading the soccer ball. He has a clear advantage here because he is a much taller player than Messi. On the other hand, even though Ronaldo is a good dribbler, Messi is much better at dribbling. Here, Messi’s short height is an advantage as it allows him to move much more quickly.

According to the infographic, the two players are pretty much equated in other areas, such as passing accuracy, shooting accuracy, free kick skills, and the number of hat-tricks they scored.

However, when it comes to penalties, it seems that Ronaldo is much better at staying composed and scoring a goal. He has scored 109 goals and missed 23. Messi has scored just 81 goals and missed 24. Therefore, Ronaldo has a much higher percentage of successful shots.

Ronaldo is also a much more aggressive player, at least according to the available data. So far, he has received 10 red cards and 101 yellow cards. On the contrary, Messi has received just one red card and 53 yellow cards.

Soccer Honors and World Records

Unsurprisingly, the two best players in the world have received numerous honors so far and hold a number of world records. To begin with, both have been awarded the Golden Ball multiple times. More precisely, Messi has received it five times, whereas Ronaldo has four Golden Ball trophies.

Messi leads in team honors as well. Since he has been playing for Barcelona, the team has received 21 honors in total. On the other hand, Ronaldo has contributed to 15 honors in total – nine for Manchester United and six for Real Madrid.

When it comes to individual honors, Messi has 15, which is two more than Ronaldo. Therefore, it seems that Messi’s skills have been more highly recognized worldwide than Ronaldo’s. This notion is reinforced by the fact that Messi also holds 15 world records, compared to Ronaldo’s 13.

Both players have become globally famous because they are strong attackers and score a high number of goals. Both of them managed to score a maximum of five goals in one match, which is something not a lot of players manage to do.

All in all, both of them are incredibly talented players with a variety of soccer skills in their legs. Even though the stats are more inclined toward Messi, we can conclude that the two are pretty much equal on the soccer playing field.

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