Cristiano Ronaldo’s 2011-2012 club season with Real Madrid may be over, but summer isn’t going to be much of a rest for him, with Portugal playing in the Euro. Lionel Messi, for the first time in quite a while, has time to let his talented legs take a rest from his historic season with Barcelona.
Historic only when looking at what he’s achieved and done, mostly scored. Barcelona didn’t secure the league title for a fourth consecutive time and failed, like every other Champions League titlist, to retain the trophy. Super Cups, Club World Cup, Copa Del Rey; All those don’t really count in the world of Barca and Real Madrid, who only count La Liga and Champions League banners.
In that aspect, this was Cristiano Ronaldo’s year. Not just the 46 league goals and the 60 in all competitions. Finally, he won a league title with Real Madrid. Finally, he was part of a victorious Real side over Barcelona in the league, at the Camp Nou, with Ronaldo scoring the winning goal. Two things kept this season from being perfect – Not winning the Champions League, falling for a second consecutive season at the Semi Final stage, and scoring less than Lionel Messi.
For a player who regards himself openly as the best player in the world, you can be sure it means something to finish behind his rival and often superior in the hypothetical race for best player in the world. Lionel Messi didn’t add anything special to the Barcelona silverware cabinet in Guardiola’s final season as the club’s head coach, but he shredded to pieces every scoring record you can think of.
The numbers? No matter how you look at them, mind blowing. He finished with 50 league goals in 37 league matches, obviously a new record in the La Liga. Ronaldo set the 40 goal mark record just 12 months prior to that and even improved it. Not enough on a too-great-to-describe kind of year from Messi. Ending up with 73 goals in all competitions, including a new Champions League record of 14.
Summer’s here, and for those of you who need their fix of their favorite clubs, it’s a rough one. The Euro and Summer Olympics don’t cut it for many. Ronaldo will be there, in the group of death, in the European Championship. For Messi fans, or for anyone who loves seeing the two of them playing on the same pitch, it’s a long wait until the next Spanish Super Cup and two Clasico’s to kick off the season.
(Press on the image for the full infograhpic)
For more on Messi vs Ronaldo, the full infographic and other cool ways to get your sports fix, Visual.ly is the place to go.