Putting Robert Lewandowski’s remarkable scoring run in context

Lewandowski
Photo by ALBERTO PIZZOLI/AFP via Getty Images
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Robert Lewandowski is on another planet right now.

The Polish striker expanded his Champions League goal-scoring streak to three games with his marker in a 4-1 win over Lazio on Tuesday, giving him goals against teams from six different countries this season.

This is a guy who scored in every UCL match he played last season before being blanked in Bayern’s 1-0 win over Paris Saint-Germain in the final. That’s 15 goals and six assists in 10 appearances. Nutty stuff.

But how does that rank amongst the all-timers, your Messis and Ronaldos?

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Lewandowski is on 32 goals and eight assists in 31 matches this season after putting up 55 and 10 in 47 matches last season.

Going back to his move from Dortmund in 2014, the 32-year-old Lewandowski has 278 goals and 65 assists in 320 games. Forty of those are penalties.

He was 26 when he made that move. Lewandowski’s first season at Bayern saw him produce his lowest output, 25 goals and 13 assists in 49 matches. He’s since hit at least 40 goals in every season and is almost sure to do the same this season.

What about Ronaldo and Messi?

The Juventus star is 36, so it’s not as simple as tracing his most recent 6.5 seasons. That’d be unfair to CR7, but we can try.

Ronaldo turned 26 in February 2011, so let’s take the rest of that season and run it six more.

Messi is 33, so the comparison is a little easier. And given his status as the best all-around performer in the world, it’s not terribly unfair to him to carry him from 28-34 (he’s a late June birthday).

And we’ll also humor Mino Raiola, who said mentioned Messi, Ronaldo, and his client Zlatan Ibrahimovic as the era’s best players. Zlatan, of course, being 39…

Anyway:

Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid, Feb. 2012 to 2017-2018)
Games: 318
Goal contributions: 429 (1.34/game)
Goals: 334 (1.05/game)
Assists: 95
Penalties: 56 (16.8% of goals)

Lionel Messi (Barcelona, 2014-15 to present)
Games: 326
Goal contributions: 446 (1.36/game)
Goals: 301 (0.92/game)
Assists: 145
Penalties: 39 (12.9% of goals)

Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Inter Milan, Barca, AC Milan, and PSG, 2007-08 to Feb. 2014)
Games: 269
Goal contributions: 280 (1.04/game)
Goals: 193 (0.72/game)
Assists: 87
Penalties: 38 (19.6% of goals)

Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich, 2014-15 to present)
Games: 320
Goal contributions: 343 (1.07/game)
Goals: 278 (0.86/game)
Assists: 65
Penalties: 40 (14.3% of goals)

It just shows that while Lewandowski is on another planet, Ronaldo and Messi are their own solar system.