Cristiano Ronaldo overtakes Lionel Messi as world’s highest-paid footballer; here’s how much he earns

Manchester/Bhubaneswar: Manchester United superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has overtaken Paris Saint-Germain’s Lionel Messi as the world’s highest-paid footballer.

“Ronaldo is set to earn $125 million before taxes in the 2021-22 season, with $70 million coming from salary and bonus for his return to United,” writes Forbes.

Ronaldo is the first team-sport athlete to amass more than $1 billion in pre-tax earnings. The Portuguese international earns $70 million in wages and a jaw-dropping $55 million from endorsement deals. Only three other active athletes make more money from endorsement deals: Roger Federer ($90 million), LeBron James ($65 million) and Tiger Woods ($60 million).

In comparison, Messi, who signed a mega endorsement deal with Budweiser, dropped to second with $110 million. Messi’s wages at PSG is less than what he was earning at Barcelona but with $75 million in on-field earnings, he is tied at the top with Neymar as football’s highest earner. Both teammates earn more than Ronaldo on the field but the United star’s endorsement deals make him the highest paid footballer in the world.

In February 2021, Ronaldo became the first person in the world to reach 500 million followers across social media platforms Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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