Sport

Messi, Ronaldo and Neymar top Forbes best paid athletes list

Messi, Ronaldo and Neymar top Forbes best paid athletes list”

Lionel Messi has topped Forbes' list of the world's highest-paid athletes as soccer players dominated the podium in 2019.

Portugal football star Cristiano Ronaldo, who switched from Spanish giants Real Madrid to Italian club Juventus at the start of the northern hemisphere season, is second on $164 million with Brazil's Neymar - who plays for French club Paris St-Germain - listed third with earnings of $158 million.

Canelo Alvarez (Boxer) $142 million 5.

In Forbes' annual rich list, Messi dethroned retired boxer Floyd Mayweather as the sports world's highest earner, raking in $127million (Dh466.5m) via salary and endorsement deals.

Athletes had to earn a minimum of $25m (£19.6m) to make this year's list.

Mayweather, who only had an exhibition bout on December 31 in Japan, went from being the top earner on the 2018 list, due to his 2017 mega-fight with Conor McGregor, from not being on the list at all.

The man in fifth, tennis star Roger Federer, had a vastly different pay split. He was No. 1 in terms of endorsements, though, with $86m.

In the "top 10" of the classification are also football players Russell Wilson (79 million euros) and Aaron Rodgers (78.8 million euros), and NBA basketball players LeBron James (78.6 million euros), Stephen Curry (70.4 million euros) and Kevin Durant (57.7 million euros).

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James was the highest earning National Basketball Association player, with $89m, while Golden State's Stephen Curry was ninth with $79.8m.

Former world number one Tiger Woods was 11th on the list with $69.3m, which included an estimated $54m in endorsements.

Meanwhile, just one female athlete made it into the Top 100, with Serena Williams listed at No. 63 ($29.2 million).



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