The Portuguese man now leads his rival in the battle for international supremacy.
If there’s one thing soccer fans will never clear off their mind on this present generation of players, then it’s the rivalry between Lionel Messi and current Ballon d’Or holder Cristiano Ronaldo. The healthy competition between the two talents define the consistent dominance of Spanish clubs Real Madrid and Barcelona since the last decade and it’s not ending yet.
Last Tuesday, Ronaldo started the season with a trophy that further grants his lovers the bragging rights over the Argentine star. The 32-year-old winger was an 83rd-minute substitute in Real Madrid’s 2-1 UEFA Super Cup final win over Manchester United in Skopje, Macedonia. A third Super Cup win and an 11th international trophy – one more than Messi.
💣💥Cristiano overtakes Messi !
L. Messi : 1️⃣0️⃣🌍🏆 pic.twitter.com/mwdfolKd3n
— Twitugal💫 (@Twitugal) August 8, 2017
Let’s take a more intricate look into the two stars’ international trophies detailing how it transpired.
UEFA Champions League titles: Cristiano 4-4 Messi
The two forwards have each managed four UCL titles. Interestingly, Ronaldo was behind at some point. With Barcelona enjoying triumphs in 2005/2006, 2008/2009 and 2010/2011, the Portuguese captain had only one Champions League trophy to present; that title was won in the 2007/2008 season with Manchester United. But with determination, CR7 has now achieved three more UCL crowns with Real Madrid in 2013/14, 2015/16 and 2016/17.
UEFA Super Cup titles: Cristiano 3-3 Messi
In this category, the two icons have the same number of winning medals. With Real Madrid, Ronaldo claimed his first UEFA Super Cup trophy in 2014 against Spanish side Sevilla. Los Blancos emulated that feat two years later. Messi had three at that moment with wins in 2009, 2011 and 2015 and therefore led his Iberian rival 3-2. But with the recent win against his former side Manchester United on Tuesday, CR7 is level pegged with the Blaugrana favorite.
FIFA Club World Cup: Cristiano and Messi have 6 between them
The top icons are equal on the FIFA Club World Cup titles front. Ronaldo won his first Club World Cup trophy in 2008 with Manchester United. Back then, it was Ronaldo 1-0 Messi. The latter — thriving under the Pep Guardiola era — made it 2-1 with triumphs in Abu Dhabi (2009) and Yokohama (2011). Hungry for more, Cristiano inspired Los Blancos to the 2014 edition in Morocco as he scooped the Adidas Silver Ball award in the process.
The following year, Leo dethroned his counterpart. It’s been La Pulga’s last Club World Cup success till date. Last December, Ronaldo made a massive statement en route to his third FIFA Club World Cup trophy. The evergreen athlete scored a hat-trick in Los Merengues’ 4-2 triumph against Kashima Antlers in Japan. Once again, neck and neck!
• Ronaldo FIFA CWC titles: 2008, 2014 and 2016.
• Messi FIFA CWC titles: 2009, 2011 and 2015.
National team trophies: Ronaldo 1-0 Messi
It is the achievement that separates the boys from the men. Most top players are judged per the relevance of their contribution for their national teams and that’s where the Albiceleste key man falls short. The number 10 star has been criticized for his inability to aid Argentina to claim the Copa America and FIFA World Cup trophies. Ronaldo, on the other hand, reigns supreme here; the 32-year-old guided the Seleccao to their first Euro Championship title win against Les Bleus in France.
That certainly has defined CR7 as a leader and a true countryman based on football terms. He’s loved by Portuguese nationals and he will forever be loved in his town, Madeira.
Although it was the 2017 UEFA Super Cup title that saw him get an 11-10 edge in the international trophies’ chart between the pair, it is the UEFA Euro 2016 title that remains the laurel which defines CR7’s dominance over Messi.
The two soccer celebrities will lead their clubs on the domestic front in the Supercopa de Espana’s first leg at the Estadio Camp Nou on August 13, 2017. The game will be played at 1:00 PM PDT/4:00 PM EDT in USA and 9:00 PM BST in the UK.