Top 25 highest-paid athletes of all time, Ronaldo and Messi in top 10

Ronaldo, Messi, Neymar top-earners in Instagram during lockdown
Ronaldo, Messi, Neymar top-earners in Instagram during lockdown

Let’s take a look at the four footballers who have made it to the list of the top 25 highest-paid athletes of all time.

Cristiano Ronaldo (position – 5)

Ranking fifth in the list, Manchester United star Cristiano Ronaldo becomes the highest-paid footballer of all time with earnings of $1.24 billion. The Portuguese star has established himself as one of the greatest players of all time and in terms of earnings, he is also second to none. One of the big reasons is his transfer to the Red Devils in the summer. The 36-year-old would earn around $125 million in his second spell at Old Trafford with $70million coming from salary and bonus. During his time at Juventus, he was their highest-paid player by a big margin.

Earnings: $1.24 billion

Lionel Messi (position – 8)

The next footballer to follow Ronaldo in the top-10 list is his arch-rival, Lionel Messi. Alongside the Portuguese ace, Messi has been the household name in football for more than a decade. In his last contract at Barcelona, the Argentine’s salary was reported to be the highest of all the players at that time. The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner moved to Paris Saint Germain last summer on a free transfer.

Earnings: $1.14 billion

David Beckham (position – 12)

Former England legend David Beckham has been ranked 12 in the list ahead of Basketball legends Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal. Beckham, who currently owns MLS club Inter Miami, still remains a favourite among the fans and his stock hasn’t gone down despite retiring from football in 2013.

Earnings: $2.1 billion

Neymar (position-21)

Neymar is one of the few youngest athletes to feature on the list. The Brazilian superstar created huge waves following his world-record transfer from Barcelona to PSG years ago. At the French Capital, the 29-year-old is reportedly earning around $1.176m per week, the highest of all the PSG players.

Earnings: $615 million

Top 25 highest paid athletes of all time

1.Michael JordanBasketball$2.62B$2.05B
2.Tiger WoodsGolf$2.1B$1.66B
3.Arnold PalmerGolf$1.5B$885M
4.Jack NicklausGolf$1.38B$830M
5.Cristiano RonaldoFootball$1.24B$1.12B
6.Floyd MayweatherBoxing$1.2B$1.08B
7.LeBron JamesBasketball$1.17B$1.05B
8.Lionel MessiFootball$1.14B$1.05B
9.Michael SchumacherMotorsport$1.13B$780M
10.Roger FedererTennis$1.12B$1B
11.Phil MickelsonGolf$1.08B$885M
12.David BeckhamFootball$1.05B$880M
13.Kobe BryantBasketball$930M$750M
14.Shaquille O’NealBasketball$870M$645M
15.Greg NormanGolf$815M$555M
16.Mike TysonBoxing$775M$445M
17.Alex RodriguezBaseball$650M$515M
18.Manny PacquiaoBoxing$630M$550M
19.Kevin DurantBasketball$625M$580M
20.Lewis HamiltonMotorsport$620M$560M
22.Jeff GordonMotorsport$595M$450M
23.Oscar de la HoyaBoxing$580M$405M
24.Peyton ManningAmerican Football$570M$460M
25.Derek JeterBaseball$555M$435M