With his spectacular strike against Liechtenstein in the UEFA Euro 2024 qualifying game, Cristiano Ronaldo now has 60 free-kick goals for his career, two less than Lionel Messi. The Argentine captain finally got on the board in the dying minutes of the game with a spectacular long-range free-kick, hours after his earlier goal.
The Portuguese captain scored his team’s third goal in the second half on a penalty kick. A few minutes later, he scored on a free kick just outside the penalty area. Ronaldo blasted a shot straight at Benjamin Buchel, the goalie for Liechtenstein.
Early in his career, Cristiano Ronaldo excelled at taking free kicks. But he’s had some difficulty in the last several years. The Portuguese player has scored on free kicks in consecutive games.
He has scored twice this week, once for Al-Nassr against Abha and once for Liechtenstein. Ronaldo has closed the gap on Lionel Messi’s total and is closing in on him.
A Twitter user posts about Cristiano Ronaldo vs Lionel Messi stat
Joao Cancelo and Bernardo Silva added two more goals to help Portugal to a 4-0 victory. On March 26th, they’ll play their next game, against Luxembourg.
Argentina, meanwhile, returned to play on Tuesday against Curacao after celebrating their 2022 FIFA World Cup victory with a 2-0 win over Panama in front of their home supporters.
Louis van Gaal, a former manager of the Netherlands national soccer team, has weighed in on the ongoing Ronaldo vs. Lionel Messi discussion. He made the shocking suggestion that Ronaldo is a better team player than Messi.
Although Van Gaal agrees that both superstars are among the game’s all-time greats, he ultimately cast his vote for Ronaldo as the greatest player of all time.
One Twitter user posted the stat that Cristiano Ronaldo has 59 direct free kick goals and Lionel Messi has 62 of them.
ALSO READ: An open letter to Cristiano Ronaldo
🚨 Direct Freekicks:
🇦🇷 Lionel Messi: 62
🇵🇹 Cristiano Ronaldo: 59Advertisement
Leo is ALWAYS ahead of CR7 🥶 pic.twitter.com/QalOlKAlLc
— Exclusive Messi (@ExclusiveMessi) March 25, 2023