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03.02.2012
» Is Cristiano Ronaldo the best penalty-kick specialist in the World?

Cristiano Ronaldo penalty kick specialist, Real Madrid 2011-2012

Cristiano Ronaldo is widely regarded as one of the most well rounded players in the game. One of his specialities are certainly his penalty kicks and CR7 stats in that domain simply speak for themselves. During his entire career, Ronaldo scored 34 goals out of his 38 attempts from the penalty-kick spot.

We've all heard some people claiming that many of Cristiano Ronaldo goals are from the penalty-kick spot and that those are less valuable than others. However, what they can't deny is that the Portuguese player continuously proves to be one of the most prolific and regular penalty-kick takers in the game. As a Real Madrid player, Cristiano Ronaldo had 24 attempts from the 12 yards line, in roughly 2 years and a half, having scored in 23 of those. The only time when Cristiano Ronaldo missed a penalty kick for Real Madrid was in 2009, in a home win against Almeria at the Santiago Bernabéu, by 3-2.

Cristiano Ronaldo: Penalty-kick specialist:

Despite having started his career in 2002, in Sporting C.P., Cristiano Ronaldo only started taking penalty-kicks after he joined Manchester United and only at his 3rd season at the club. His first penalty-kick goal took place in the 2005-06 season, when he was still 20-years old, in a match between Manchester United and West Bromwich Albion. Ronaldo would end that season with a 12 goals record out of 47 games, after finally starting to impose as a Red Devil player. He exploded in the two following seasons, with 23 goals in 2006-07 and 42 in 2007-08.

During his stay in Manchester and between 2003 and 2009, Cristiano Ronaldo was awarded with 14 penalty-kicks attempts, from which he scored for 11 times (79% success rate). One of those misses was in the UEFA Champions League Final in 2008, against Chelsea's Petr Cech. The other major one was precisely in a match between Manchester United and Barcelona, also for the UEFA Champions League, in a game held at the Camp Nou, in 2008. Ronaldo would redeem from that miss when already playing at Real Madrid, in 2011. He then scored the equalizer (1-1) in a game held at the Santiago Bernabéu, between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

Cristiano Ronaldo penalty-kick stats at Manchester United (2003-2009)
Penalty-kick attempts
Goals
Misses
Success rate
14
11
3
79%

Cristiano Ronaldo penalty kick for Manchester United, in a game against Bolton Wanderers, for the English Premier League

However, it has been in Real Madrid that Cristiano Ronaldo really proved to be a reliable choice for taking penalty-kicks. With still less than 3 seasons wearing the Real Madrid jersey, Ronaldo was granted with the opportunity to score from the penalty-kick spot for 24 times, from which he scored 23 and only missed once (96% success rate). Adding these numbers with the ones from his time in Manchester United, Cristiano Ronaldo penalty-kick career stats are nothing but impressive, as the Portuguese player scored 34 goals from 38 attempts (89% success rate).

Cristiano Ronaldo penalty-kick stats at Real Madrid (2009-2012)
Penalty-kick attempts
Goals
Misses
Success rate
24
23
1
96%

Cristiano Ronaldo goal from the penalty-kick spot, in a Real Madrid vs Athletic Bilbao game

In an attempt of picking a good term of comparison with another world-class football player that usually takes his team's penalty kicks opportunities as well, we'll look at Barcelona's Lionel Messi stats. Setting the Argentinian player as a sort of benchmark, we can immediatly infer that scoring goals from the 12 yards line isn't as easy as many try to make it look like. During his entire career at Barcelona, Lionel Messi has been awarded with 27 penalty-kicks attempts, from which he scored 20 and missed 7 (74% success rate). We won't argue about the fact that scoring a penalty-kick might come easier than scoring from a long-range attempt, but it's also undeniable that maintaining such a regularity when playing at a high-level and always under pressure is certainly remarkable and not easy to accomplish. Ronaldo does it since he's 20 years-old and unsurprisingly, as time passes, his penalty-kicks success rate seems to increase in a sort of correlation with his maturity level.

Cristiano Ronaldo penalty-kick career stats (2003-2012)
Club
Penalty-kick attempts
Goals
Misses
Success rate
Manchester United
14
11
3
79%
Real Madrid
24
23
1
96%
TOTAL
38
34
4
89%

Cristiano Ronaldo penalty kick in the Clasico, in Real Madrid vs Barcelona, in 2011

Lionel Messi penalty-kick career stats (2004-2012)
Club
Penalty-kick attempts
Goals
Misses
Success rate
Barcelona
27
20
7
74%
TOTAL
27
20
7
74%

Lionel Messi penalty kick miss against Diego Alves, in Valencia vs Barcelona, in 2012

* All statistics/data collected in the 3rd of February 2012
* Sources: as.com | wikipedia.com | youtube.com


Real Madrid next game will be against Getafe, next Saturday. You can watch Getafe vs Real Madrid live, but also Barcelona vs Real Sociedad and Arsenal vs Blackburn Rovers from our football live streams section. Cristiano Ronaldo is expected to be on the line-up against Getafe, this weekend.

Real Madrid vs Getafe kick-off time (04-02-2012):

Jakarta (Indonesia) | GMT+7: 02:00
Spain
(Madrid) | GMT+1: 20:00
Portugal and England (Lisbon/London) | GMT+0: 19:00
Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) | GMT-2: 17:00
New York (United States) | GMT-5: 14:00
Los Angeles (United States) | GMT-8: 11:00
Beijing (China) | GMT-8: 11:00

Sources: ronaldo7.net / as.com / wikipedia.com / youtube.com

Cristiano Ronaldo penalty kick goal, in Real Madrid vs Atletico Madrid, for La Liga

Cristiano Ronaldo missing from the penalty kick mark, in Barcelona vs Manchester United for the UEFA Champions League, in 2008-2009

Cristiano Ronaldo big penalty kick miss, in the UEFA Champions League Final in 2008, against Petr Cech, in Chelsea vs Manchester United

Cristiano Ronaldo penalty-kick stance, with his body inclination at the moment he shoots

Cristiano Ronaldo penalty kick goal, at the Santiago Bernabéu, in a Real Madrid match in 2011/2012

Cristiano Ronaldo class, taking a penalty kick for Real Madrid

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