Lionel Messi beats Ronaldo to number of free-kick goals in the decade

Lionel Messi beats Ronaldo to number of free-kick goals in the decade

- Lionel Messi has been adjudged the best dead-ball specialist of the decade

- The Barcelona star scored 34 goals from direct free-kicks, 14 above his arch-rival Ronaldo

- The Juve star came second on the list having hit the back of the net via DFK 20 times

Lionel Messi has beaten Cristiano Ronaldo to a number of goals scored from direct free-kick over a decade with the Barcelona star adjudged biggest dead-ball specialist of his generation.

According to OptaJoe, a respected statistics platform, the Argentine forward was more than a box player over the last ten years having hit the net from free-kick on thirty-four (34) occasions.

Messi's absolutely terrific killer instinct outside the box rated him higher as he was 14 goals more than any other player next within the top 5 European leagues in the 2010s.

Juventus star Cristiano Ronaldo came far second with twenty goals from direct free-kicks with Bosnian star Miralem Pjanić sealing the third spot with 16 goals to his name.

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Italian star Francesco Lodi beat Serie A legend Andrea Pirlo to the fourth spot with 13 goals as the AC Milan former star completed the top five list.

Here is the complete list as cited on OptaJoe:

1. Lionel Messi (Barcelona) 34

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus) 20

3. Miralem Pjanić (Juventus) 16

4. Francesco Lodi ( Calcio Catania) 13

5 Andrea Pirlo (retired Juventus) 12

6. Hakan Çalhanoğlu (AC Milan) 12

7. Aleksandar Kolarov (AS Roma) 12

8. Beñat Etxebarria (Athletic Bilbao) 11

9. Daniel Parejo (Valencia) 10

10. Daniel Wass (Valencia) 10

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Meanwhile, earlier reported that Cristiano Ronaldo has been ranked above his arch-rival Lionel Messi in Sky Sports' list of athletes of the decade, with tennis superstar, Rafael Nadal shockingly omitted in the controversial ranking.

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The Portuguese ace is the only football star in the top three which has tennis star Serena Williams ranked top athlete of the decade courtesy of her ruthless dominance and influence in female tennis.

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