Carol Danvers (aka Captain Marvel) is the latest superhero to join the MCU, and from the looks of it, she's set up to be quite the heavyweight. Thanos coming face-to-face with the heroes of the MCU in Avengers: Infinity War and knocking them around like Skittles showed that the Avengers are going to need heavy reinforcements when they have a re-match with the Mad Titan in Avengers: Endgame.
According to Kevin Feige and a few other inside sources, Captain Marvel is going to be the most powerful hero in the MCU as of late. Here is how Marvel would stack up against Thanos in a fight. Keep in mind we're going to be mostly sticking to the MCU rather than the larger Marvel Comics Universe.
9 First Round: Strength
Captain Marvel is frequently called 'Earth's Mightiest Hero.' In the comics, she has often been shown to have the strength to rival that of the Incredible Hulk. That's right, Marvel can go toe-to-toe with the likes of Thor and Hulk in a straight up brawl.
Unfortunately, Thanos has also proven himself to be more than a match for Thor and Hulk. To put it bluntly, he wiped the floor with them in the first 10 minutes of Infinity War. As far as raw strength is concerned, the first round might end in a stalemate.
8 Second Round: Fighting Skill
When Thanos fought the Hulk, what helped the Mad Titan gain the decisive lead was that he didn't just throw punches indiscriminately. There was practiced ease to Thanos's fighting style, which proved he was not only physically mighty but had also honed his fighting skills over a very long lifetime.
Captain Marvel is also a formidable warrior. She is a former Air Force combat officer, who then gained a second life as a member of the Kree race's warrior elite. This means that Captain Marvel is a highly skilled fighter, and she should be able to counter any fancy space kung-fu moves that Thanos throws at her.
7 Third Round: Speed
Thanos may look big and beefy, but the dude is crazy fast. While the Mad Titan prefers to stand with his hands behind his back sneering at his enemies while his followers bring them down, he is perfectly capable of moving at enhanced speeds when required. Keep in mind that he fought off multiple heroes at the same time on Planet Titan by matching and even exceeding their speeds.
Captain Marvel is small and light, and very, very fast. In the comics, the binary form of Carol can traverse intergalactic space faster than the speed of light. While it is unlikely that the movie version of the character will display such speed, she has been shown to be fast enough to take on an alien armada all by herself. Once again, we feel Thanos and Captain Marvel will be closely matched in this area.
6 Fourth Round: Energy-based Powers
Captain Marvel has a long list of psionic abilities that are derived directly from her DNA instead of a suit or a weapon. She can fly, survive in space without a suit, shoot power beams out of her hand, and transform into a being of pure light energy that can cause incredible destruction.
Thanos does not have any such powers of his own, at least in the movie. What he does have is extremely advanced alien tech and an army of followers with a host of psionic abilities. Provided Marvel faces Thanos without his army, without his tech, and without the infinity gauntlet, she may have the edge in this department.
5 Fifth Round: Intelligence
Captain Marvel is a top-tier human and Kree warrior hybrid, meaning her intelligence is nothing to sneer at. She has time and again used her wits to win over her enemies in the comics. Rather than resorting to her fists like Hulk or magic abilities like Thor to power through a situation. Captain Marvel prefers to use strategy and planning to take out the competition.
On the other hand, Thanos is a mastermind unlike anything else the MCU has seen so far. He makes plans over decades and even eons, and those plans usually work out in his favor. For instance, the entire combined might of the MCU heroes could not prevent Thanos from fulfilling his mission to collect the Infinity Stones and snap half of everything out of existence. Thanos wins when it comes to intelligence.
4 Sixth Round: Leadership Ability
Captain Marvel has often taken a leadership position in the comics. She has led the Avengers on multiple occasions and even has her own galactic team of heroes known as the Ultimates. Even in the MCU, it has been strongly hinted that Captain Marvel's arrival on the scene during the events of Endgame will rally together the rest of the heroes for a final assault against Thanos.
The Mad Titan is no stranger to leadership roles. In fact, so powerful is the innate charisma of Thanos that he has followers instead of teammates, known as the Black Order. Clearly, when it comes to a fight to the death, Thanos won't be going in alone. He will most probably bring with him an entire army and a group of powerful acolytes, just like he did in Infinity War.
3 Seventh Round: Durability
The fact that Captain Marvel is regularly compared to heroes like Thor and Hulk should give you an idea about her durability. An interesting feature of her physiology is that in some comics, Marvel is capable of absorbing an energy-based attack and then using it to grow stronger. If the durability of movie Captain Marvel is anything like in the comics, most of the weapons that would take out the other Avengers should have no effect on her.
Thanos has absorbed multiple punches from the Hulk at point-blank range and shrugged them off like it was nothing. He has also fought the combined might of the Guardians of the Galaxy, Spider-Man, Iron Man and Dr. Strange without breaking a sweat. Clearly, the Mad Titan is one durable dude. This fight between Marvel and Thanos could stretch out for a really long time with the two combatants slugging away at each other without tiring for hours.
2 Eighth Round: Comic History
Thanos and Captain Marvel have fought each other frequently in the past, and the results have been interesting. While the Mad Titan has successfully wiped out the entire Marvel universe on more than one occasion, he has also suffered defeat more than a few times. The man who wore the mantle of Captain Marvel before Carol Danvers had actually fought and defeated Thanos in the comics. Carol herself has only fought Thanos alongside other Avengers.
1 The Final Round-Up
As we have seen so far, a fight between Thanos and Captain Marvel would be a close affair. Both are incredibly powerful, galactic level entities with an array of powerful allies on their sides. Captain Marvel's physical abilities should give her the advantage in a one-on-one fight with Thanos, as long as he doesn't have access to any weapon as formidable as the Infinity Gauntlet.
On the other hand, Thanos never enters a fight without a carefully thought-out plan in place, and his plans almost always succeed. So while we can see Captain Marvel giving Thanos a tough time at the beginning of the fight through sheer raw power alone, it won't be long before Thanos sets his plans in motion to gain the upper hand. It will then fall to the rest of the heroes to rally around Captain Marvel and put together a concerted effort to pool their resources and finish off the Mad Titan once and for all.