Lionel Messi Becomes Football’s Second Billionaire After Beating Cristiano Ronaldo In Forbes Rich List

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Lionel Messi has topped Forbes’ rich list and become the second footballer to earn $1 billion in his career.

Barcelona superstar Messi has caught up to longtime rival Cristiano Ronaldo and earned $1 billion before tax throughout his entire career.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner is set to earn £98 million this year due to his insane wages and variety of sponsorship deals.

He is the face of Adidas and has multi-year contracts with drinks company Pepsi and video game publisher Konami.

Ronaldo comes in second place this year, with the Juventus man earning around £91 million.

Check out the entire top ten below.

1. Lionel Messi (Barcelona & Argentina) – $126 million (£98 million)

2. Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus & Portugal) – $117m (£91m)

3. Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain & Brazil) $96 million (£74.7 million)

4. Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain & France) – $42 million (£32.6 million)

5. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool & Egypt) – $37 million (£28.8 million)

6. Paul Pogba – $34 million (Manchester United & France) (£26.5 million)

7. Antoine Griezmann (Barcelona & France) – $33 million (£25.7 million)

8. Gareth Bale – $29 million (Real Madrid & Wales) (£22.6 million)

9. Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich & Poland) – $28 million (£21.8 million)

10. David de Gea (Manchester United & Spain) – $27 million (£21 million)

Paris Saint-Germain duo Neymar and Kylian Mbappe come in third and fourth place respectively.

Neymar recently signed a huge deal with Puma after leaving Nike, while Mbappe is the face of FIFA 21.

Mohamed Salah is the richest Premier League player, with Manchester United pair Paul Pogba and David de Gea featuring.

But Messi and Ronaldo are ahead of the pack and the latter splashed the cash earlier this year to celebrate his Serie A title win.

Ronaldo splashed £5.5 million on a luxury yacht which boasts five cabins, six bathrooms, a large lounge as well as a kitchen.

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Forbes explained how their list was calculated, stating: “To compile our list, we spoke with clubs, players’ agents, commercial sponsors and soccer experts in the U.S. and Europe. All figures are converted to U.S. dollars and include soccer salaries for the 2020-21 season, bonuses and endorsements. Transfer fees are excluded. Earnings are pretax.”

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