Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have once again sparked debates about who among them is the greater footballer after another record-setting weekend in their respective leagues. Messi became the first footballer in La Liga and only second in the 21st century to score and assists 20 goals each in a single season. Ronaldo netted his 28th Serie A goal this season and has now scored in six successive league matches. Take a look at records set and milestone completed by both these football superstars this weekend. Cristiano Ronaldo Reacts After Rescuing Juventus With a Brace Against Atalanta in Serie A 2019–20 (See Post).
Despite setting new penalty records, Ronaldo could not inspire Juventus to a win against Atalanta and instead scored in the final minute to salvage a point in 2-2 draw. Messi, meanwhile, assisted Arturo Vidal for the only goal against Real Valladolid and powered Barcelona to 1-0 win. But despite the draw, Ronaldo’s Juventus lead the Serie A 2019-20 points table and are seven points clear at the top as they chase their ninth successive Scudetto. Lionel Messi Reaches New Goal and Assist Milestone in Barcelona’s 1–0 La Liga 2019–20 Win Over Real Valladolid.
Messi’s Barcelona are meanwhile two-time running La Liga champions but are set to lose their title grasp after falling behind to Real Madrid. Barcelona are second in the La Liga 2019-20 points table and are a point behind Real, who also have a game in hand, with only three matches remaining in the league campaign.
Records and Milestones Completed By Messi and Ronaldo
20 goals, 20 Assists: The Argentine became the first player to score 20 goals and also make 20 assists in a single La Liga season. In fact, he is only the second footballer in the 21st century to achieve the feat. Thierry Henry was the first player to set the record when he scored 24 goals and assisted 20 times for Arsenal in the 2002-03 Premier League season.
20 Assists: Messi is the only second player to record 20 assists in a single La Liga season. Former Barcelona playmaker Xavi was the first to reach the milestone and he achieved it in 2008-09 for Barcelona. Messi is the second player to do so but the 33-year-old can overtake Xavi and set the record for most assists in a La Liga season with a couple more in the three remaining La Liga games.
11: Messi has been involved in 11 goals since La Liga resumed last month. He has scored thrice and assisted eight goals in nine matches making him the player with most goal involvements in that period.
28 Goals: The penalty brace against Atalanta took Cristiano Ronaldo’s goalscoring tally in this Serie A season to 28 goals. He is now just one behind Lazio forward Ciro Immobile, who has found the net 29 times. But with six games remaining and in the kind of form that he is in, Ronaldo will be confident of winning the Serie A Capocannoniere this time.
35: Former Hungary forward, Ferenc Hirzer holds the record for most goals in a single Serie A season for Juventus. Hirzer, who played two seasons for Juventus, scored 35 league goals in 1926-27 and it remains the most goals scored by a Juventus player in one Serie A season. Ronaldo currently has 28 and need seven more strikes to level the record.
28: With 28 goals, Ronaldo is now fifth in the list of most goals scored by a Juventus footballer in a single Serie A season. The list is, of course, led by Ference Hirzer. He is followed by Felice Borel (32 goals in 1933-34), John Hansen (30 goals in 1951-52) and Borel again (29 goals in 1932-33). Ronaldo with 28 goals is tied with John Charles and Omar Sivori. Former Wales footballer Charles scored 28 Serie A goals in 1957-58 while Argentine Sivori netted the same number of goals in 1959-60.
11: Ronaldo has taken 11 penalty kicks this Serie A season and has converted all of them. He is currently tied with Roberto Baggio in the list of most penalty goals scored without missing in a single Serie A season. Baggio scored the same number of goals from the spot in 1997-98. Ronaldo can also overtake him by converting his next spot-kick in the remaining six games.
Both these superstars have been tremendously successful and are setting new records, reaching new milestones and achieving grand new feats every time they take the field. Ronaldo turned 35 this February while Messi celebrated his 33rd birthday last month but age certainly hasn’t stopped them.