Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have been long-standing rivals since CR7s move to the Bernabéu in 2009 and have both produced many spectacular El Clásico games since. They both played against each other for the first time when Manchester United played Barcelona in the 2007/8 Champions League semi-final, which United would go on to win. Both are considered the greatest players of their generation, and of all time, have scored over 600 goals for club and country as well as 50 goals in a single season. Since they both finished runners-up to Kaka for the Ballon d’Or in 2007, between them they have dominated the award for the last decade, sharing it five times each. Yet somehow, the creators of FIFA, EA, must decide each year which of football’s superstars are superior to the rest. Between FIFA 06 and 09, Ronaldo had the clear advantage having established himself nicely at United, rated 91, Messi had only just begun his senior career at Barcelona and was a measly 78 overall. Early FIFA victories for Ronaldo, both were in full swing for their clubs and as such Ronaldo was rated 93, and Messi 91.
When FIFA 11 rolls around we begin to see a change as Messi takes a slim advantage in the ratings 90 to 89. During this time Messi’s Barcelona had won La Liga and knocked Real out of the Champions League and between 2009 and 2012 Messi won four consecutive Ballon d’Ors. The middle years won by Messi.
Between FIFA 12 and 16, Messi maintains his rating advantage, it’s not until FIFA 17 that Ronaldo pulls ahead with a 94 rating. Although they were largely similar in goal production it’s possible that decision was made on the back of Ronaldo winning the last two Ballon d’Or’s and last three Champions League titles. Later years with Ronaldo back on top.
Ronaldo takes the win, of sorts, being rated higher in seven titles to six, the FIFA 19 cover athlete has already had his rating of 94 revealed this year, can Messi keep pace?