Who’s the highest-paid footballer on this planet?
Striving to become the highest paid gamer in the world is not a goal that most stars aspire to early in their careers.
Team success is the driving force behind the motivations of most players, with individual fame coming second. Even then, it is prizes like the Ballon d’Or that young footballers dream of.
Still, it’s kudos to become the world’s best-named star, especially when the game’s leading exponents have traded punch for punch throughout most of their careers.
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have traded the game’s biggest single prizes over the past decade, so it’s no surprise that the two superstars top this list.
It’s Messi who comes out on top with total earnings of $ 126 million, a salary of $ 92 million and endorsements worth $ 34 million.
However, his ability to stay on top depends on balance. His contract with Barcelona runs at the end of June and the Catalans are under pressure to cut their wage bills. Either he has to drastically reduce his income or go somewhere else.
Meanwhile, Ronaldo is further back to $ 117 million. His wages of $ 70 million are dramatically dwarfed by Messi but he almost makes up for the shortfall with endorsements of $ 47 million. Ronaldo’s sponsorship money is sponsored by Herbalife and Nike and is $ 13 million more than anyone else in the game.
Third is Neymar. The Brazilian national star makes $ 96 million a year. Most of that comes from his contract with Paris Saint-Germain, which earned him a salary of $ 78 million. Only Messi deserves more. It is now worth a whopping $ 18 million in sponsorship.
The top three are in a league of their own, even Neymar’s earnings are twice as high as that of team-mate Kylian Mbappe, who finished fourth. The PSG striker reportedly makes $ 42 million a year. His salary at PSG is currently $ 28 million – although that will likely go up if a new deal is negotiated – while his endorsements are worth exactly half that.
Rounding out the top 5 top earners in the Premier League, Mohamed Salah makes $ 37 million per season, $ 3 million more than Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba.
Next up are Antoine Griezmann from Barcelona and Gareth Bale from Real Madrid, followed by Robert Lewandowski, the winner of the best FIFA player 2020.
Manchester United’s David De Gea is the game’s best goalkeeper.