Messi vs Ronaldo Champions League Knockout Stats

UCL Groups + Knockouts All Champions League Main Draw Matches

Messi Stats UCL Groups + Knockouts All Time

  • 114Goals
  • 33Assists
  • 141Apps
  • 101mins per goal
  • 78mins per goal contribution

Ronaldo Stats UCL Groups + Knockouts All Time

  • 128Goals
  • 38Assists
  • 169Apps
  • 115mins per goal
  • 89mins per goal contribution

UCL Knockouts All Champions League Knockout Matches

Messi Stats UCL Knockouts All Time

  • 46Goals
  • 12Assists
  • 69Apps
  • 129mins per goal
  • 103mins per goal contribution

Ronaldo Stats UCL Knockouts All Time

  • 65Goals
  • 14Assists
  • 80Apps
  • 110mins per goal
  • 90mins per goal contribution

UCL Finals All Champions League Final Matches

Messi Stats UCL Finals All Time

  • 2Goals
  • 0Assists
  • 3Apps
  • 135mins per goal
  • 135mins per goal contribution

Ronaldo Stats UCL Finals All Time

  • 4Goals
  • 1Assists
  • 6Apps
  • 158mins per goal
  • 126mins per goal contribution

UCL Semi-finals All Champions League Semi-final Matches

Messi Stats UCL Semi-finals All Time

  • 6Goals
  • 3Assists
  • 15Apps
  • 220mins per goal
  • 147mins per goal contribution

Ronaldo Stats UCL Semi-finals All Time

  • 13Goals
  • 2Assists
  • 21Apps
  • 146mins per goal
  • 127mins per goal contribution

UCL Quarter-finals All Champions League Quarter-final Matches

Messi Stats UCL Quarter-finals All Time

  • 12Goals
  • 3Assists
  • 22Apps
  • 156mins per goal
  • 125mins per goal contribution

Ronaldo Stats UCL Quarter-finals All Time

  • 25Goals
  • 3Assists
  • 22Apps
  • 83mins per goal
  • 74mins per goal contribution

UCL Last 16 All Champions League Last 16 Matches

Messi Stats UCL Last 16 All Time

  • 26Goals
  • 6Assists
  • 29Apps
  • 96mins per goal
  • 78mins per goal contribution

Ronaldo Stats UCL Last 16 All Time

  • 23Goals
  • 8Assists
  • 31Apps
  • 111mins per goal
  • 82mins per goal contribution

UCL Group Stage All Champions League Group Stage Matches

Messi Stats UCL Group Stage All Time

  • 68Goals
  • 21Assists
  • 72Apps
  • 82mins per goal
  • 63mins per goal contribution

Ronaldo Stats UCL Group Stage All Time

  • 63Goals
  • 24Assists
  • 89Apps
  • 120mins per goal
  • 87mins per goal contribution

UCL Qualifiers All Champions League Qualifying Matches

Messi Stats UCL Qualifiers All Time

  • 0Goals
  • 0Assists
  • 0Apps
  • 0.00goals per game

Ronaldo Stats UCL Qualifiers All Time

  • 1Goals
  • 1Assists
  • 4Apps
  • 253mins per goal
  • 127mins per goal contribution

UEFA Cup All UEFA Cup / Europa League Matches

Messi Stats UEFA Cup All Time

  • 0Goals
  • 0Assists
  • 0Apps
  • 0.00goals per game

Ronaldo Stats UEFA Cup All Time

  • 0Goals
  • 0Assists
  • 2Apps
  • 0.00goals per game

Messi vs Ronaldo in the UEFA Champions League

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The Champions League is the world's greatest football competition. The World Cup still holds the status as the most prestigious trophy in world football, but in terms of quality, the Champions League is the pinnacle, with all of the world's best players involved every year.

Both Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have enjoyed great success in the competition, with Messi lifting the trophy 4 times with Barcelona, whilst Ronaldo has won it 5 times; once with Manchester United and fours times with Real Madrid.

Champions League Goals

Unsurprisingly, Messi and Ronaldo are the two top goalscorers in Champions League history, with Ronaldo leading the way on 128 goals (+1 in qualifying) in 169 games, whilst Messi is 14 behind on 114 goals in 141 games.

Interestingly though, it was actually Leo Messi who first surpassed the previous all time goals record of 71, set by Real Madrid legend, Raúl. Messi broke the record with a hat-trick against APOEL in November 2014, putting him on 74 Champions League goals; 4 ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo who was on 70 goals at the time.

The fact that Ronaldo is now 14 goals ahead of Messi is testament to how relentlessly he has found the net in the last 5 years, regularly hitting double figures in the seasons that followed.

In fact, Cristiano Ronaldo scored 10 or more goals in seven consecutive seasons from 2011/12 to 2017/18, his best return coming in 2013/14 when he scored a stunning 17 goals in 11 appearances. This, of course, is a Champions League record for most goals scored in a single season.

Most goals in a single Champions League season

RankPlayerSeasonGoalsGames
1Cristiano Ronaldo2013/141711
2Cristiano Ronaldo2013/141612
3Cristiano Ronaldo2013/141513
4Lionel Messi2011/121411
4José Altafini1962/63149
6Lionel Messi2010/111213
6Lionel Messi2018/191210
6Cristiano Ronaldo2012/131212
6Cristiano Ronaldo2016/171213
6Ferenc Puskas1959/60127
6Ruud van Nistelrooy2002/03129
6Mario Gómez2011/121213

Ronaldo has had multiple fantastic goalscoring seasons in the Champions League, finishing as the top scorer on 7 occasions, whilst Messi has finished as the Champions League top scorer 6 times in his career.

Despite Cristiano Ronaldo's stunning goal-surge in recent years, Messi still actually boasts the superior ratios, scoring 0.81 goals per game compared to Ronaldo's 0.76 goals per game.

If we drill down into minutes per goal, again Messi has the edge here, soring a goal every 101.1 minutes, whereas Ronaldo has scored a goal every 115.0 minutes in the Champions League.

Ronaldo Champions League Goals by Club

Believe it or not, Cristiano Ronaldo actually played 29 Champions League games for Manchester United before scoring his first goal! He finally broke his duck in the 7-1 victory over Roma in 2007, scoring 2 goals. As we now know, this really was a case of a long-awaited goal causing the floodgates to open.

  • Manchester United: 15 goals in 52 games
  • Real Madrid: 105 goals in 101 games (!)
  • Juventus: 8 goals in 16 games

Champions League Assists

In general, we're used to Leo Messi having the ascendancy when it comes to assists, but it's actually Ronaldo who currently holds the record for most assists in the UEFA Champions League, with 38 assists compared to Messi's 33 assists.

However, with Ronaldo clocking up 28 more games than Messi, it means Ronaldo averages 0.22 assists per game, whereas Messi averages 0.23 assists per game.

In terms of overall goal contributions, Messi leads the way, registering a goal or assist every 78.4 minutes, whilst Ronaldo records a goal or assist every 88.6 minutes.

Champions League Group Stage Stats

In the group stages, it's Messi that boasts the better goalscoring stats, with 68 goals (72 games) in the Champions League group stage, compared to Ronaldo's 63 goals (89 games).

So despite playing 17 fewer group stage matches, Messi has scored 5 more goals than Ronaldo at this stage of the compeition.

Ronaldo has however provided more assists in Champions League group stage matches, with 24 assists to Messi's 21 assists.

Champions League Knockout Stats

With Ronaldo being the all time top scorer in the Champions League and Messi having more group stage goals, you might have guessed that Ronaldo subsequently has significantly more in the knockout stages of the competition.

Indeed, Cristiano has racked up an incredible amount of goals in the latter stages of the Champions League in recent years, as his Real Madrid side won 4 out of 5 trophies in an unprecedented spell of European dominance.

In 2016, he scored a hat-trick to rescue Real Madrid against Wolfsburg in a quarter-final 2nd leg. In 2017 he became the first player to score back-to-back hat-tricks in the Champions League knockout stages, scoring 2 goals in extra-time to defeat Bayern Munich, before hitting 3 past arch-rivals Atletico Madrid in the following round. Two years later, now at Juventus, he scored another knockout stage hat-trick in the Last 16, again against Atletico who had won the 1st leg 2-0.

In total, Ronaldo has scored 65 goals in the Champions League knockout stages in 80 appearances, scoring a goal every 109.9 minutes on average. Messi has scored 46 goals in the Champions League knockout stages in 69 appearances, scoring a goal every 129.4 minutes on average.

If we look at assists, Ronaldo has 14 knockout stage assists to Messi's 12; although Ronaldo has played 11 more games. Overall, Ronaldo scores or assists every 90.5 minutes in Champions League knockout games, whereas Messi scores or assists every 102.6 minutes.

Messi has also had some huge nights in the Champions League knockout rounds. His personal favourite is probably his brace in the 2011 semi-final at the Bernabeu in one of the biggest El Clasico encounters in recent years. The second goal is one Messi claims to be his best ever goal, picking the ball up 30 yards from goal before proceeding to dribble through the entire Madrid defence and then sliding the ball past a bewildered Casillas.

Another that stands out is Messi's destruction of Bayern Munich in the 2015 semi-final, during which he literally floored Jerome Boateng through his movement alone. In 2019, Messi put on a masterclass against Manchester United in the quarter-final 2nd leg, scoring twice. He then followed this up with another brace against Liverpool, arguably the best side in the world at the time. His stunning 30 yard free kick ensured they took a 3-0 advantage to the away leg, but we all know what happened next. Messi did play well in the 2nd leg, setting up 3 major chances for his team mates, but this was ultimately not enough.

Cristiano Ronaldo's superb stats in the Champions League knockout rounds are perhaps his greatest asset in the infamous GOAT debate.

Champions League Finals

Both Messi and Ronaldo have good records in Champions League finals, appearing in 9 finals between them. In one of these finals, the two players actually faced each other, with Messi's Barcelona defeating Ronaldo's Manchester United in 2009 with goals from Eto'o and a famous Leo Messi header.

Ronaldo was however on the winning side a year previous, as Man Utd beat Chelsea on penalties; Ronaldo scored during the game but actually missed his penalty in the shootout. But when John Terry stepped up to take the winning penalty for Chelsea, he slipped, missed the goal and Ronaldo secured his first Champions League trophy.

In 2011, Messi produced an outstanding performance as his Barcelona side completely outclassed Manchester United, winning the game 3-1 with Messi scoring the crucial second goal.

In 2017, Ronaldo scored 2 goals as Real Madrid ran out 4-1 winners against his future side Juventus.

Overall, Messi has scored 2 goals in 3 final appearances, with 0 assists. Ronaldo has played in 6 Champions League finals, scoring 4 goals and providing 1 assist.

In short, both players have delivered on the big stage, with Messi winning all 3 of the finals he's appeared in, whilst Ronaldo has won 5 out of 6.

Champions League Records

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have practically rewritten the Champions League record books as their careers have progressed, a selection of which are listed below. For the full range of Champions League records these guys have broken, head over to the Records page.

  • 🏅 Most Goals: Cristiano Ronaldo (128 goals)
  • 🏅 Most Assists: Cristiano Ronaldo (38 goals)
  • 🏅 Most Goals in a Single Season: Cristiano Ronaldo (17 goals in 2013/14)
  • 🏅 Most Hat-tricks: Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo (8 hat-tricks)
  • 🏅 Most Goals in a Game: Lionel Messi (5 goals - shared with Luiz Adriano)
  • 🏅 Most Free Kick Goals: Cristiano Ronaldo (12 goals)
  • 🏅 Most Consecutive Seasons Scored In: Lionel Messi (15 consecutive seasons)
  • 🏅 Most Top Scorer Awards: Cristiano Ronaldo (7)

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Stats Updated Jul 11, 9:52 PM UTC