Lionel Messi reaches 700 goals in 112 matches fewer than Cristiano Ronaldo

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Lionel Messi scored his 700th career goal in style on Tuesday night.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner had gone three matches without a goal as he sat on 699 strikes for club and country.

But it was always only a matter of time before Messi reached the milestone.

And it came against Atletico Madrid as Barcelona drew 2-2 in a crucial title match.

Was it a mazy run as he beat five defenders? Was it a 30-yard screamer? Was it a stunning free-kick?

None of the above because it was a cheeky Panenka penalty against the best goalkeeper in the world, Jan Oblak.

Only Messi would do that with the league title on the line.

It meant Messi reached 700 career goals in just 861 appearances.

For Barcelona, Messi has scored 630 goals in 723 matches. And for Argentina, he’s bagged 70 in 138 appearances.

Messi joins Cristiano Ronaldo as the only active players to have reached 700 goals.

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Incidentally, Ronaldo took 112 more matches to hit 700.

It took the Portuguese 973 matches, hitting his 700th during Portugal’s 2-1 loss to Ukraine back in October 2019.

Two incredible records from two incredible footballers - but Messi just edges this one.

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He also edges the race for Ballon d'Ors with the Argentine leading 6-5. However, there's still time for a 35-year-old Ronaldo to level it up. 

With Messi seemingly not winning his domestic league with Barca this season and Ronaldo looking certain to do that with Juve, the Portuguese surely has the advantage. Whatever happens in the Champions League will have a big say on the outcome of the accolade.

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