The Richest Athletes in The World: Messi is On Top

Last year, Conor McGregor became the richest athletes in the world. Now he sank and did not make the list of the best.

Top 1 – Lionel Messi. All because of the transition to PSG: the Parisians did not stint on generous bonuses for the Argentinean. Leo was helped by a contract with Hard Rock International, one of the largest recreation networks in the world. Messi has been promoting the company since June, which has about 200 outlets and includes restaurants, hotels, casinos and even concert venues.

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LeBron James is not far behind. First, the legend starred in a Space Jam remake and sold her major production company for nearly $725 million. LeBron is also promoting Crypto.com, one of the biggest players in the fast-growing cryptocurrency market.

Cristiano Ronaldo was in third place – most of the earnings are associated with social networks. Cristiano has a total of 690 million subscribers, which makes him a tidbit in the advertising market. Ronaldo is also seriously investing in the restaurant business.

Let’s fix: there are four basketball players and three football players in the top 10. Tennis is protected by Roger Federer, who still earns a lot off the court, Saul Alvarez takes the rap for boxing.

American football under the protection of Tom Brady, who returned to the big sport in March 2022 by signing a contract with Tampa Bay. After his final departure, he will become the NFL’s chief analyst at Fox with a $375 million contract over 10 years.

What is the rating based on?

The final data of each player in the ranking includes all prize money, salaries and various bonuses that the athlete earned from May 1, 2021 to May 1, 2022. In the case of the NBA and European football, Forbes takes a salary for the entire season at once. Totals include all NFL and NBA playoff bonuses.

Importantly, Forbes evaluates earnings data off the field. All sponsorship deals, performance royalties, fan productions and license income for 12 months are taken into account. All cash receipts from the athlete’s enterprises are taken based on conversations with industry insiders. For example, this is how they learned about Messi’s specific income from a hotel chain in Spain and Argentina.

What about other ratings?

The other day, a similar rating was released from another major American publication – Sportico. Also a serious resource, although it was launched only in June 2020.

The most important difference is the change of leader: here LeBron is higher than Messi – 126.9 million to 122 million. According to Sportico, the Argentine earns 8 million less, and James overtakes him because of earnings outside the floor.

Sportico also provides data on the richest female athlete in the world – Japanese tennis player Naomi Osaka with a fortune of 53 million has become her. Osaka ranked 20th overall in the publication’s rankings. On the court, Naomi earned 1.2 million, but received about 52 million from sponsorship contracts.

Cristiano and Neymar are also in the ranking, but they do not bypass Messi.

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