Ronaldo overtakes Messi to become world’s highest earning sportsman in 2023

Al-nassr forward Cristiano Ronaldo (left) and Inter Miami’s Lionel Messi. — Reuters/File 

Star footballer Cristiano Ronaldo has surpassed Lionel Messi to become the world’s highest-earning sportsman in 2023.

The Al-Nassr forward has earned this title for the first time since 2017, according to Forbes. His yearly gross earnings from the Saudi club have helped him achieve this feat for the third time in his historic career. 

The former Manchester United player has topped the list, earning himself a Guinness World Record for the highest annual earning as an athlete this year. 

Ronaldo has earned an estimated amount of $136 million in the last 12 months till May 1, 2023, according to Guinness World Records. It comprises $46 million on-field earnings and $90 million off-field. 

Messi, who is the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner, held the title in 2022 with an estimated amount of £103 million. 

The Portuguese player moved to the Saudi pro league last year in December on a two-and-a-half-year contract and is rumoured to earn an estimated $75 million per year.

Moreover, it is reported that his off-field earnings are more than on-field. Ronaldo has not only a lifetime contract with Nike but he also makes a good amount of money through his CR7-branded merchandise.

All the top three athletes with the highest earning in 2022-23 are footballers. Apart from Ronaldo, Messi and Paris Saint-Germain’s Kylian Mbappé are also on the list. 

Messi, who is in the second spot, has total earnings of $130 million divided equally on-field and off-field. 

Meanwhile, Mbappé has an overall earnings of $120 million.

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