Cristiano Ronaldo vs Lionel Messi: Who has won the most Man of the Match awards each season?

  • Kobe Tong

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are often the best players in any match they appear in.

With an almighty 12 Ballon d’Or titles between them, the Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester United stars are two of the greatest footballers to have ever played the beautiful game.

And although they are now ploughing deeper and deeper into their thirties, Messi and Ronaldo‘s unending talent still ensures that they outshine players over 10 years their junior on a regular basis.

Ronaldo vs Messi

However, as you will no doubt be well aware, Messi and Ronaldo’s dominance over their peers across the last 15 years means that they are compared at almost every twist and turn.

And while their goal, assist and trophy totals might have been compared to the point of tedium, we’re going to go out on a limb and say that their Man of the Match awards are seldom contrasted.

Besides, fans on social media regularly debate who out of Messi and Ronaldo is more important to their respective teams with many arguing that the latter can traverse different teams more easily.

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Man of the Match awards

There are most certainly groups of supporters who would argue that Messi has been carried by Barcelona‘s golden generation to a greater extent than Ronaldo has been by his own teammates.

And with Man of the Match awards gauging the frequency with which each player is the star of the show, it gives us some level of insight into who out of Ronaldo and Messi is the key protagonist most often.

Got it? Right then, well, let’s get stuck into the data because MESSIVSRONALDO.APP has a fascinating tool that tracks how many MOTM plaques the two legendary players have garnered.

Using data collected by across appearances in the league and Champions League, we can contrast the pair’s totals for every season since the 2009/10 campaign.


Most MOTM awards each season

Naturally, there are different gauges and distributors of MOTM prizes, but the WhoScored system’s grounding in statistics means that it’s arguably the most accurate way to compare the two legends.

So, bearing that in mind, it would be rude not to discover the kingpin of MOTM awards by checking out how Ronaldo and Messi compare over the last decade or so right here:


Lionel Messi 18-17 Cristiano Ronaldo


Lionel Messi 29-15 Cristiano Ronaldo



Lionel Messi 32-14 Cristiano Ronaldo


Lionel Messi 24-15 Cristiano Ronaldo


Lionel Messi 19-14 Cristiano Ronaldo


Lionel Messi 34-19 Cristiano Ronaldo



Cristiano Ronaldo 15-14 Lionel Messi


Lionel Messi 18-7 Cristiano Ronaldo


Lionel Messi 28-11 Cristiano Ronaldo


Lionel Messi 24-12 Cristiano Ronaldo



Lionel Messi 26-12 Cristiano Ronaldo


Lionel Messi 24-9 Cristiano Ronaldo


Cristiano Ronaldo 5-4 Lionel Messi


Landslide victory for Messi

Goodness gracious me. It’s an absolute whitewash.

Messi was named the best player in games more times than Ronaldo in the 2009/10, 2010/11, 2011/12, 2012/13, 2013/14, 2014/15, 2016/17, 2017/18, 2018/19, 2019/20 and 2020/21 seasons.

The Portuguese star only edged out his eternal rival 15-14 in the 2015/16 campaign and happens to have made a better start to the current season with five plaques compared to Messi’s four.

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And things get even worse when you work out the totals with Messi having won 294 MOTM awards in the league and Europe since 2009, while Ronaldo brings up the rear with a tally of 165 gongs.

Does that make Messi the Man of the Man of the Match Match?



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