Forbes' highest-paid athletes list features 6 World Cup players
The Forbes magazine has released its annual list of the World's Highest-Paid Athletes and La Liga and Ligue 1 star players took six spots in the Top 20. The final sum associated with each footballer represents his salary and endorsement money.
Lionel Messi, in forth place overall, earns an estimated $64.7 million a year, while Neymar Jr., as the 16th seed, makes $33.6 million annually. For Los Merengues side, Cristiano Ronaldo appears in second overall, with a total of $80 million, and his teammate, Gareth Bale, shows up in the 14th place, making $36.4 million annually.
Neymar and Bale also appear as two of the three youngest millionaire athletes on Forbes list, with the Barcelona striker in first place and the Real Madrid forward in third.
As for Ligue 1, no surprises were found, with Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Radamel Falcao being the highest-paid soccer players in France's premier league.
The Swedish international earns $40.4 million per year, putting him 12th on the list. Meanwhile, the Colombian star gets $35.4 million per season after combining salary and endorsements.
Another interesting fact in this list is that most athletes ranging from baseball, golf, basketball, tennis and other sports typically have the largest chunk of their total payments come from endorsements, but in the case of soccer players this largest portion are always from their club salaries.