Ronaldo overtakes Messi as highest earner in world football [See top 10]
Manchester United superstar, Cristiano Ronaldo, has overtaken Paris Saint-Germain’s Lionel Messi as the highest earner in world football, according to Forbes.
Ronaldo’s transfer to Man United has made him the highest-paid footballer in the world, overtaking rival Messi.
The Portugal captain will earn almost €107 million gross, including a salary of close to €60 million and more than €40 million in earnings from sponsorships and partnerships with brands including Nike, Herbalife and the CR7 brand, which includes perfumes, clothing ranges, hotels and gyms this season.
Only three athletes, Tennis legend Roger Federer (approximately €77 million), basketball star LeBron James (€55.5 million) and golfer Tiger Woods (€51 million) have more commercial earnings than Ronaldo.
Ronaldo’s latest earnings have seen him overtake Messi, whose move to PSG from Barcelona, will see him earn around €94 million gross, with a salary of €64 million, but with lower commercial earnings.
Messi is sponsored by brands including Adidas, Pepsi and Budweiser.
Meanwhile, Paris Saint-Germain’s Neymar is third-highest earner behind Ronaldo and Messi.
The Brazilian earns €81 million, despite having the same salary as his team-mate Messi.
Below is Forbes’ top ten highest earners in football in 2021-22;
1. Cristiano Ronaldo – £91.5m ($125m)
2. Lionel Messi – £80.5m ($110m)
3. Neymar – £69.5m ($95m)
4. Kylian Mbappe – £31.5m ($43m)
5. Mohamed Salah – £30m ($41m)
6. Robert Lewandowski – £26m ($35m)
7. Andres Iniesta – £26m ($35m)
8. Paul Pogba – £25m ($34m)
9. Gareth Bale – £23.5m ($32m)
10. Eden Hazard – £21m ($29m)