Messi Crowned World's Highest Paid Athlete



Lionel Messi has been named as the world’s highest paid athlete over the last 12 months, ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar, in the Forbes top 100 list.

The Barcelona and Argentina star earned $127m in the last year – more than Juventus forward Ronaldo ($109m) in second place and Paris Saint-Germain’s Neymar ($105m) in third.

It is the first time that a trio of footballers have ranked as the top three earners, while Messi becomes only the second footballer to top the rankings after Ronaldo.

The next footballer on the list is Manchester United's Paul Pogba in 44th place, who is the highest earning Premier League player with $33m.

Former Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta (46th), who now plays his football in Japan with Vissel Kobe, is the only other player to be found inside the top 50, with earnings of $32.5m

Outside of the top 50, Manchester United’s Alexis Sanchez can be found at 53, with earnings of $30.8m for the past 12 months, ahead of French superstar Kylian Mbappe in 55th ($30.6m) and Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil in 57th ($30.2m).

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