Everyone knows sports are a very lucrative area if you’re at the top. The annual list of top-paid athletes proves this. To give you an idea, in 2016 soccer player Cristiano Ronaldo earned $ 88 million in salaries and sponsorships!
The 2018 World Cup will bring together some of the highest paid soccer superstars in the world. The amount of money these players will make your jaw drop! See just how much Los Angeles Galaxy star Zlatan Ibrahimović is worth!
Stars Find Every Way To Make Money
The highest paid athletes are those who constantly challenge physics to the delight of the crowd. The fact that they have legions of fans helps when a brand wants to associate its image with successful athletes.
When team contracts are combined with brandability, the highest paid stars never have to worry about money again. From Lionel Messi to Faiq Bolkiah, the sport is truly played for the love of the game. Soon we’ll find out if that love translates to standing alone at the top of the world mountain.
Lionel Messi Is Worth Over Half A Billion
Having earned more than $520 million in his career, Lionel Messi’s fortune is a combination of his contract with Barcelona’s club, awards such as the Golden Ball, and various advertising contracts.
Messi is the third highest paid player in Europe after Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale. Today he makes around 126 million euros per season. Hopefully, he’s a fan of caviar, because he never has to eat fast food again.
Cristiano Ronaldo Earns $500,000 A Week!
One of football’s most charismatic athletes earns a salary of $40 million. Thanks to his dreamy looks, Ronaldo earns another $30 million in commercial appearances. In 2014, he made $80 million. Who knows just how big that number has become in 2018.
After signing a new contract, Ronaldo earns around $500,000 each week. His new lucrative contract runs through 2021. Just how big is his piggy bank, though? Rough estimates believe he’s worth around $620 million. Next, Neymar flies in to steal our hearts, and everything from our wallets, too!
Neymar Proves Age Shouldn’t Affect Income
Neymar is young, and hasn’t peaked as a player yet but is already one of the highest paid athletes on the planet. According to European media, Neymar isn’t on the same level of Messi, Gareth Bale, and Cristiano Ronaldo, but is close.
Unsurprisingly, he makes more money for his work off the field than on it. Sponsorships account for more than 60% of his income. Most estimates say that Neymar’s worth is close to $110 million, a figure that is quite impressive given his age.
Gerard Piqué Somehow Makes More Than Shakira!
At the age of 30, Gerard Pique was already a world and European champion with FC Barcelona and Spain’s national team. Piqué is married to Shakira and made more money than she did in 2017.
Piqué is one of the highest paid players in Spain and the entire world. Annually he makes a whopping $34 million. Between advertising and marketing, sports product licenses and the salary of Barca, you can see that soccer superstars live a pretty good life! Coming up, Toni Kroos has to pay for all of his tattoos somehow.
Toni Kroos Is Germany’s $29 Million Man
Not to make you jealous, but the Real Madrid recently announced the renewal of midfielder Toni Kroos’ contract. According to the official release by the club, the German will stay right where he is until 2022.
Kroos will earn a good salary increase, receiving more than $29.5 million per season- almost double his previous contract. The new contract makes him the highest paid German player in history, passing Müller and Schweinsteiger. Should we get into sponsorships?
Sérgio Ramos Has Captained His Way To An Incredible Fortune
Sergio Ramos is captain of the Spanish national team and Real Madrid. His high-standing inevitably makes him the center of media attention. All of this has earned him roughly $29 million a year, which of course isn’t enough.
In business, Ramos moves like a fish in the water with investments in real estate and other ventures. As if that weren’t enough, one of his partners is Gerard Piqué! Keep reading to learn how much the newest American import is worth.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic Is The New David Beckham
Zlatan Ibrahimovic doesn’t earn what he used to, playing in MLS at 36-years-old, but he still has reason to celebrate. That’s because in his first season in England as a Manchester United player, the Swede landed on the list of the richest sportsmen in the United Kingdom.
Shortly after, he was firmly entrenched as the second wealthiest. Earning more than $29 million, he only trails Lewis Hamilton, a Formula 1 driver. In 2016, Hamilton was listed by a British newspaper as the wealthiest in all the land!
Griezmann Learned The Hard Way What Fans Expect When You’re Rich
Would you be happy with a salary of more than one million dollars a year? Multiply that by 29 and you have Griezmann’s salary! With so much money, fans expect a lot. When Griezmann didn’t deliver in the Spanish Championship the boo birds came out in full force.
He quickly recovered and scored seven goals in four days, including four goals against Leganés in a 4-0 win. Suddenly, everyone loved him again and he could show his face in public.
Suárez Has More Clothing Sponsorships Than You Have Clothing
The power of Uruguayan star Suarez has grown since his transfer from Liverpool to Barcelona in 2014. His salary is $27 million, and he has a contract with Adidas, clothing company My Brand, glasses brand Sun Hawker, Pepsi, and more.
Famous for his bites (yes, that incident in the Brazilian Cup was not the only one), he helped many betters who believed that he would repeat the feat during the competition. From his bank account, we see that it wasn’t Chiellini that he bit! Coming up, Iniesta earned every dollar he’s worth.
Iniesta Loves What China Is Offering Him
Iniesta might be a two-time finalist (not winner) for the Golden Ball Awards, but he’s number one in our hearts. When you have a contract of more than $29 million, you can sleep easier after losing.
And how about increasing your contract by 10 million? This is what China is offering Iniesta. The deal, if it is completed, could be annouced as soon as the 2018 World Cup ends.
Lavezzi Could Swim In A Pool Of Money If He Wanted
Speaking of China, another superstar who was seduced by Chinese money is Ezequiel Lavezzi. Once his contract is announced after the World Cup, he will pass many players on this list.
Just to give you an idea, before China he was already making more than $29 million. So far no business partnerships or sponsorships in China have been announced, but we’re sure he’ll get a few. And they will pay him very well.
Müller Cries Using Tissues Made Of Money
Thomas Müller made his fortune playing for Bayern Munich and the German national team. It has been a difficult year for the footballer in 2018 on the pitch, but at least he has his millions of dollars to relieve the pain.
Thomas, 28, ranked first among the top 10 highest-paid footballers in 2018 according to People With Money. He has earned an estimated $58 million including sponsorships. Next, Cavani may look good, but his wallet looks even better!
Cavani Came Home After Earning Millions
Edinson Roberto Cavani Gómez was born in Salto, Uruguay and left to build a fortune of more than $30 million. He returned home for the Uruguayan national team after being offered millions for a match against Colombia in 2008.
Cavani has participated in four major tournaments with Uruguay; the 2010 and 2014 World Cups, the 2013 Confederations Cup, and the 2011 Copa America. He scored once in the 2010 World Cup, helping Uruguay to qualify for the next phase of the competition. Also, he was part of the Uruguayan team that won the 2011 America’s Cup.
Lewandowski Is Poland’s Superman
Despite appearing for the first time in a World Cup after 12 years, Robert Lewandowski gives Poland a star to call their own. And he’s among the richest stars in the world. A human highlight reel, many analysts consider him to be the best forward on the planet.
In his most recent season, Lewandowski has scored a goal every 92 minutes. Its hard to argue he’s not worth the $25 million a year he makes. Next, is Pogba worth all the money he makes?
Pogba Might Be Rich, But He Still Demanded A Discount On His House
Paul Pogba is a name you’ll want to remember. The international superstar earns more than one million dollars each week playing for Manchester United. For further proof that Pogba knows a thing or two about a good deal, look no further than the price he paid for his house.
Moving isn’t cheap, but Pogba refused to pay market prices for his luxurious new home. He bargained with the real estate company, ultimately paying over two million dollars less than the asking price. Just having him live there is probably good for business, though! The mansion has five bedrooms, an indoor pool, a sauna, a games room, and an exclusive press room.
James Rodríguez Earned His Fortune Through Hard Work
James David Rodríguez Rúbio currently plays for Bayern Munich on loan by Real Madrid. He is considered by many Colombian journalists as the successor of Carlos “El Pibe” Valderrama. Several analysts worldwide also named him the best player of the first phase of the 2014 World Cup.
Rodriguez finished the competition at the top of many statistical categories. He was the top scorer with six goals. For all his hard work, his bank account tips over at $15 million in salary and more from advertising contracts. Coming up, Aguero’s smile alone is worth his salary!
Aguero Is Getting Paid A Lot To Be Injured
Sergio Aguero has made 21 goals for Manchester City in the English Premiere League. Recently recovered from a knee operation, he is expected to be one of the main weapons of Argentina in the 2018 World Cup.
If healthy, Argentina will be one of the hardest teams to beat in Russia. Whatever doubts there may be about his health, none exist about his wealth! Before sponsorships are added in, Aguero makes $15 million in salary.
Di María Doesn’t Come Cheap For Argentina
Angél Di María is one of the players in the most promising generations in Argentine football history. Along with Messi and Agüero, Argentina won the U-20 World Cup in 2005 and took gold at the Beijing Olympics in 2008. They have not had the same success with the main national team. Yet.
At the World Cup in Russia, the players will seek a third world champion for Argentina. While we don’t know what Di Maria makes for being part of Argentina’s big three, we do know his club salary is $17 million.
Faiq Bolkiah Has Deep Pockets, But Not Because Of Soccer
Okay, it’s true that Faig Bolkiah will not go to the 2018 World Cup, but he is the world’s richest player and deserves a mention. More than just a soccer player, he is the nephew of Hassanal Bolkiah, who claims a fortune of almost $20 billion.
Born in Los Angeles, Bolkiah chooses to play for the Brunei national team. He has played nine times and scored one goal. If soccer doesn’t work out for him, at least he has royal connections! Not everyone can say that.