The legendary duo of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are unlikely to shy away from comparisons of their illustrious careers. After the star Argentine surpassed the 100-goal mark for his native country, many doubters have sprung up to challenge the difficulty of the Argentine star’s opponents. How do both men compare to the world’s top players?
Lionel Messi broke the 100-goal mark in a national jersey in midweek, scoring a hat-trick at half-time in a friendly against Curacao and adding an assist. Many critics and comparisons with Cristiano Ronaldo have been made after reaching that milestone.
They belittled the merits of the Argentine legend by saying that he achieved this record against weaker teams than their Portuguese idol. So how do they compare against the current top ten national teams in the world according to FIFA rankings?
Theranking lists the following national teams from first to tenth place: Brazil, Argentina, France, Belgium, England, Netherlands, Croatia, Italy, Portugal and Spain.
And how have the two active football legends fared against these teams on a historical scale? The Spanish newspaper Marca showed how evenly matched their stats were, and it’s wonderful to see how the careers of both star footballers intertwined beautifully.
Messi was the winner with 15 goals. It’s worth noting that he most enjoyed his rivals from Brazil, for whom he scored five goals.
Ronaldo scored 14 times in matches against the world’s top team, hitting the net four times against the Netherlands and, traditionally, against rivals from Spain.
The two also faced each other in a friendly between Argentina and Portugal on 9 February 2011 in Geneva.
Both star strikers scored in that match, but Lionel Messi’s side won 2-1.
Sources: Marca, FIFA
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