Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are undoubtedly two of the greatest footballers of all time. No other players have dominated the sport and gone neck-to-neck for records for over a decade in the history of the game.
Both players differ in their styles and attributes. Despite starting out as wingers, their styles of play are quite different from each other. Cristiano Ronaldo’s hunger to prove himself has enabled him to win league titles in four different countries.
Meanwhile, Lionel Messi’s unwavering loyalty to Barcelona has made him arguably the greatest player to have donned their storied red and blue kit. Lionel Messi has won a record six Ballons d’Or and Cristiano Ronaldo is right behind him with five.
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo continue to deliver despite walking into the twilight of their careers
Both players continue to be on top of their games. While Messi won the La Liga Golden Boot in the 2020-21 season, Ronaldo won the Serie A Golden Boot. The Argentina international won the Golden Boot and the Best Player Award at Copa America 2021. Ronaldo won the Golden Boot at Euro 2020.
As we can see, there is very little to choose between the two players. Without further ado, let’s take a look at five things Lionel Messi does better than Cristiano Ronaldo.
Lionel Messi has a much better track record than Cristiano Ronaldo when it comes to discipline. The Portuguese international has always shown a lot of aggression and he has made a career out of channeling it in the right way.
But it’s not very rare to see Ronaldo lose his cool on a football pitch. Ronaldo doesn’t like being pushed around on the football field and he gives it back without much care for the consequences. That shows a lack of discipline.
On the other hand, Messi gets kicked about in games far too often. Defenders often try to bully him physically but more often than not, Messi manages to keep his composure.
In total, Lionel Messi has picked up just three red cards and all three of them have been straight reds. On the other hand, Cristiano Ronaldo has been sent off 11 times. Seven of those have been straight reds.
#4 Long range shooting
Both Ronaldo and Messi are similar when it comes to their chance conversion inside the area. But when it comes to testing the goalkeeper from range, the Argentine is simply much better than his Portuguese counterpart.
Messi has scored 75 goals from outside the box while Ronaldo has scored just 57. The Barcelona man averages one long ranger every 12.4 games while the Juventus forward averages one every 18.8 games.