Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi: Who should be the G.O.A.T. of Football

Cristiano Ronaldo vs Lionel Messi 2

Two of the greatest football players we have ever seen are the subject of what seems to be the most difficult debate in sports – deciding who should be the G.O.A.T. (Greatest of All-Time). Every time this conversation comes up, only two names would come to mind: Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. As we examine each of these marquee players’ claim to the G.O.A.T. status, we will also weigh in as to whom the title should be given.

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Ronaldo V.S. Messi (The Legendary Battle)

The intense rivalry between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo has been around since the early 2000s. Their battles have always been exciting and fun to watch as they always both go at each other.

Cristiano Ronaldo vs Lionel Messi


8x Ballon d’Or 5x Ballon d’Or
41 Titles 35 Titles
1x FIFA World Player of the Year 1x FIFA World Player of the Year
0 World Cup Championships 0 World Cup Championships


At first glance, one could judge that Messi is the better player according to the number of Ballon d’Or awards and championship titles he has over CR7. However, if we dig deeper, the line between them gets thinner and thinner.

According to, Cristiano Ronaldo is the leading international scorer in football history with 109 goals in 179 games.

On the other hand, Lionel Messi only comes on the number 8 spot with a total of 76 goals scored in 151 games. Additionally, throughout their careers, Ronaldo scorer 818 goals in 1,139 games (0.62 goals per game) while Messi gathered 786 goals in 996 games (.79 goals per game). Messi may have a higher average but Ronaldo has already made his name as the top scorer in football history with his 818 goals.

Leading international scorers
Photo Courtesy of

Lionel Messi, however, took a step higher in the ladder over Ronaldo after winning his first major international trophy for Argentina in the Copa America final against Brazil last year. As a result, Messi builds up his case further as the ‘Greatest of All Time’ in football.

Overall, although Ronaldo played a year earlier and participated in 143 games more than Messi, the latter had more professional titles and has already brought a championship to Argentina. Taking away all the extracurriculars and season awards, Messi is slowly taking the number 1 spot as the best player in the sport’s history.

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FIFA World Cup 2022: How it would make either Ronaldo or Messi the G.O.A.T.

Even though the depths of greatness these two have shown the world is unfathomable, they still fell short in the biggest stage in football. They’ve always came in close but never got the chance to grasp the FIFA World Cup trophy. After four tournaments, it’s already been evident that the title has eluded both of them.

Messi and Renaldo

But, Messi and Ronaldo will push one last time to achieve the elusive dream. For the 37-year-old Ronaldo, this will definitely be his last World Cup. As for the 35-year-old Messi, it’s unlikely that we will be seeing him in FIFA World Cup 2026.

Related: Will Lionel Messi be the G.O.A.T. if he wins the 2022 FIFA World Cup?

Even though how tough the path they have to face in their respective groups in this tournament, Messi’s Argentina and Ronaldo’s Portugal are still the favorites to win this year’s title. With what could be the last dance between these two legends, one thing is for sure: Whoever wins the title (between Messi and Ronald) gets to be the crowned the Greatest of All Time. Despite this, La Pulga and CR7 are locked for the top two best players in football history.

Who do you think should be called the GOAT? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below. For more content, stay with us, here at Spiel Times.

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Sources: Wikipedia, Sporting Life,, FIFA

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