Together the two have played more than 350 games in the Champions League. Cristiano Ronaldo (187) he is the footballer with the record for appearances in the highest continental competition; Leo Messi (163), the third. Together they have scored 270 goals in the Champions League. They are the two top scorers in this competition. Cristiano has won five; Leo, four. But However, this 2023/24 year will be historic because none of them will play it. This is the first time this has happened since 2003.
“It is an honor to play in the Champions League, the most important competition,” Cristiano explained in a past interview on the UEFA website. The Portuguese has set numerous records in continental competition and is now preparing for new challenges: the Champions League… but from Asia. “Being the top goalscorer in the history of the competition makes it special for me. This tournament is very important for me.” he added.
It is an honor to be able to play in the Champions League, the most important competition
The Champions League is a special competition. Made for the best. Messi reflected on this last year after raising it several times… and falling back on others: “It’s a very difficult competition to win… because the best person doesn’t always win, it’s always small details that make the difference.”. Details that distinguish the best. Like her.
The Champions League is a very difficult competition to win because the best doesn’t always win.
Numbers that are unattainable for anyone
Cristiano Ronaldo’s best season in terms of numbers in the Champions League was 2013/14: 17 goals in 11 games. He scored a goal in every game he played, except the first leg of the semi-final against Bayern. He crowned this edition with victory in Lisbon against Atlético de Madrid. He would win the European Cup again in 2015/16… and again against local rivals. With 16 goals in 12 games this season and a game-winning hat-trick against Wolfsburg, he came back and reached the quarter-finals.
His last great season at continental level was 2017/18… his last at Real Madrid. And champions again, this time against Liverpool in Kiev. He scored 15 goals in 13 games and scored in 10 consecutive games… including the famous Chjlena against Juventus in Turin in the quarterfinals.
Like Cristiano, Messi also led the way and led his Barcelona to glorious triumphs. And he has gotten used to scoring in the final. In 2008/19 he beat Manchester United in Rome, scoring one of the goals… and beating Cristiano Ronaldo. In 2010/11, without the Portuguese at Old Trafford, they beat the “Red Devils” again in the final: 3-1 … and with another goal from the Argentine.
They would win it again in 2014/15, this time against Juventus in Berlin. In the final he didn’t score a goal, he only provided one assist… but his monumental game is fondly remembered the semi-final first leg against Bayern: two goals and an assist to make it 3-0, including the “dribble” against Jerome Boateng that went around the world.
Christian? It was wonderful and helped us both grow in our respective careers.
“It was wonderful and helped us both grow in our respective careers,” explains Messi when asked about the rivalry with Cristiano. A long-distance competition that has made both of them the best players in the world… And? has made the Champions League the best club competition in the world.