“Forbes” list: Lionel Messi highest-earning athlete, Federer surprises

Sport „Forbes“-List

Messi gets a significantly lower salary, but is now the top earner

Status: 4:49 p.m

Earned well over 100 million US dollars last year: Lionel Messi

Earned around 130 million dollars last year: Lionel Messi


Forbes magazine has published the list of the world’s highest paid athletes. Lionel Messi replaces Conor McGregor at the helm despite a drop in salary. Roger Federer is seventh. He only won $700,000 in prize money.

FFor the second time since 2019, soccer star Lionel Messi is number 1 in the athlete money list of the business magazine “Forbes”. According to the ranking published on Thursday, the 34-year-old Argentinian earned $130 million (€123.6 million) in the past twelve months after moving from FC Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain, the same amount as in the same period last year.

The midfielder replaces mixed martial arts star Conor McGregor, who had earned $ 180 million (171.162 million euros) the year before. The “Forbes” list is based on research by the magazine’s editors and is based on estimates and is believed to be reliable.

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“Forbes” initially only published a top 10 of the highest-earning athletes, the top 50 is to be announced in the near future. In total, the top ten athletes in the rankings earned $992 million ($943.293 million) between May 2021 and May this year. This is a decline of six percent compared to the previous year with 1.05 billion dollars (998.445 million euros).

LeBron James in second place

According to Forbes, Messi has lost $22 million in salary as a result of his move, but still gets a salary of $75 million. The Argentine earned $55 million from non-sports businesses. Number two in the ranking is basketball star LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers with $121.2m (41.2m/80m) ahead of Messi’s rival Cristiano Ronaldo of Manchester United with $115m (60m/55m).

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Tennis player Roger Federer, number one in 2020, is in seventh place and is the leader with the largest non-sports revenue. In total, the long-injured Swiss earned $90.7 million, including $0.7 million from tournaments.

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