Struggling in Ligue 1 with Paris Saint-Germain, Lionel Messi has shone financially over the past 12 months. According to Forbes, the Argentine star tops the list of the highest paid athletes in the world.
Before taxes, Lionel Messi is reported to earn $130 million annually from activities on and off court. This amount allowed the Bolga team to beat LeBron James and rival Cristiano Ronaldo in the list of the richest. Messi, who earns $75 million a year playing soccer, also makes $55 million through sponsorship deals and the like.
NBA star LeBron James ranks second on the rich list, earning $121.2 million annually. The Los Angeles Lakers forward may have missed the playoffs this season. But he was dominant off the court, enjoying his talk show and starring in Space Jam: A New Legacy last year.
Cristiano Ronaldo completed the top three, earning $115 million after leaving Juventus for Manchester United. The Portuguese superstar earns the same as Messi off the pitch, and the majority comes from his unprecedented presence on social media. Ronaldo has more than 690 million followers on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. This allows him to take advantage of the high referral fees of a number of companies.
It should be noted that Forbes calculates estimates based on prize money, salaries and bonuses as well as estimates of endorsement deals and other sources of revenue outside the field.
The 10 highest paid athletes according to Forbes in 2022:
1- Lionel Messi: $130 million
2- LeBron James: $121.2 million
3- Cristiano Ronaldo: $115 million
4- Neymar Jr.: $95 million
5. Stephen Curry: $92.8 million
6- Kevin Durant: $92.1 million
7. Roger Federer: $90.7 million
8. Canelo Alvarez: $90 million
9- Tom Brady: $83.9 million
10- Giannis Antetokounmpo: $80.9 million