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Cristiano Ronaldo sets new Champions League appearance record

The Manchester United forward has surpassed Iker Casillas by making his 178th outing in the competition.


Cristiano Ronaldo has chalked up yet another UEFA Champions League record by making his 178th appearance in Manchester United's home meeting with Villarreal. Now contesting his 19th season in the competition, and also its all-time leading goalscorer, he has passed the previous benchmark established by Iker Casillas.

As it happened: Man. United vs Villarreal

Cristiano Ronaldo through the years

Most Champions League appearances

178 Cristiano Ronaldo (2003–)
177 Iker Casillas (1999–2019)
151 Xavi Hernández (1998–2015)
151 Lionel Messi (2004–)
142 Raúl González (1995–2011)
141 Ryan Giggs (1993–2014)

Ronaldo has missed only four of his clubs' UEFA Champions League games since the 2013/14 quarter-finals.

Ronaldo's vital Champions League statistics

Cristiano Ronaldo's Champions League milestones

178 Appearances
136 Goals
5 Titles
19 Seasons
112 Wins
35 Draws
31 Losses
8 Hat-tricks
20 Yellow cards
1 Red cards

Most Champions League goals

Watch all Cristiano Ronaldo's Champions League goals

136 Cristiano Ronaldo
121 Lionel Messi
77 Robert Lewandowski
72 Karim Benzema
71 Raúl González
56 Ruud van Nistelrooy

Ronaldo did not score until his 27th UEFA Champions League appearance, so his 136 goals have come in his 151 outings since.

Landmark appearances

1 Stuttgart 2-1 Man. United, 1 October 2003
An 18-year-old Ronaldo earned a penalty that allowed Van Nistelrooy to halve the deficit in a group stage defeat. United reached the last 16 before being ousted by Porto (José Mourinho's touchline dash, anybody?).

Ronaldo: great Manchester United goals

50 Man. United 1-0 Arsenal, 29 April 2009
Ronaldo struck the bar as Sir Alex Ferguson's side earned a semi-final first-leg lead. The Portuguese was unstoppable in the return, but Barcelona found a way in the final, the forward's first.

100 Real Madrid 3-0 Dortmund, 2 April 2014
This one came in the midst of Ronaldo's record-breaking 17-goal title-winning season and he duly scored for the eighth Champions League outing running to cap a quarter-final first-leg victory – it would prove decisive.

150 Real Madrid 1-3 Juventus, 11 April 2018
Juve looked to have pulled off a famous comeback from 3-0 down after the quarter-final opener. Ronaldo scored two and assisted one in that Turin encounter and duly popped up with a late, late penalty at home to snatch a 4-3 aggregate win.

178 Man. United 2-1 Villarreal, 29 September 2021
Not satisfied with simply breaking Casillas's record, Ronaldo marked his landmark 178th appearance in typically decisive style. United had trailed Villarreal before Alex Telles's leveller, but the game seemed headed for a draw until their No7 clinched victory in the 95th minute.

Know your Champions League history?

Ronaldo's other Champions League records

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