Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo: Who has the most goals & big chances created since 2018/19?

Lionel Messi in action for Argentina

Right up until time itself ceases to exist, we will debate who is the better player between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

The latter is a destructive magician who leaves defenders in a tangle on a regular basis. No one possesses a greater left foot than the Argentine who has left a whole heap of players in his wake.

However, he has only ever played at the highest level in one league - La Liga. Ronaldo, on the other hand, has been there and done it in England, Spain and now Italy.

In terms of physique, we've probably never seen such a player. Ronaldo is the complete footballer and doesn't just dominate defenders on the ground, he also tears them apart in the air.

At the age of 35, he's still putting in mesmeric displays but sooner rather than later, the duo of Messi and Ronaldo will have to hang up their boots.

For now, we still get to marvel at their quite incredible abilities while the likes of Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe come through the ranks. That's without forgetting Neymar, someone who recently surpassed Ronaldo Nazario's tally of goals for Brazil.

Remarkably, all three of them fail to make it onto a special list of players we've put together. 

Lionel Messi in action for Barcelona

We went ahead and explored the players with the most goals and big chances created since the start of the 2018/19 season, via SofaScore. It's an intriguing set of names, so without further ado, here they are...

11. Serge Gnabry - Bayern Munich: 64

10. Timo Werner - RB Leipzig and Chelsea: 65

9. Jamie Vardy - Leicester City: 66

8. Karim Benzema - Real Madrid: 66

7. Thomas Muller - Bayern Munich: 69

Thomas Muller

6. Duvan Zapata - Atalanta: 70

5. Ciro Immobile - Lazio: 71

4. Cristiano Ronaldo - Juventus: 73

3. Mohamed Salah - Liverpool: 78

Mo Salah

2. Robert Lewandowski - Bayern Munich: 87

1. Lionel Messi - Barcelona: 133

Debate settled? Certainly in the last two years, Messi has been streets ahead of Ronaldo when it comes to goals and chance creation.

Is that because Ronaldo is two years older? Quite possibly.

What's fascinating to note is just how high Lewandowski is on the list. He was widely tipped to win the 2020 Ballon d'Or before it was cancelled because of COVID-19.

Robert Lewandowski

The Polish striker is joined on the list by two of his teammates - Muller and Gnabry, while there are some surprising names in the hat for the most dangerous forwards in world football.

Those inclusions happen to be Atalanta's Duvan Zapata and Jamie Vardy, two players who have benefitted from their clubs doing well domestically in the last few years.

It'll be interesting to see how this list looks like come the end of the current season.

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