Top 10 highest earners in sport as Cristiano Ronaldo ‘nears move to Al Nassr

Cristiano Ronaldo has reportedly agreed a bumper £173million-per-year contract with Al Nassr in Saudi Arabia, which would make him the highest earner in sport.

He had his Manchester United contract terminated this month after a tumultuous relationship with club chiefs that only worsened when he made some controversial statements in a TV interview with Piers Morgan.

And now Ronaldo is reported to have agreed a two-and-a-half year deal with Al Nassr – worth up to £173m-per-year – that will see him play until the age of 40, according to Spanish newspaper outlet Marca.

If he does complete the transfer move, Ronaldo’s eye-watering salary would make him the highest-earning person in sport, according to Forbes.

Now we look at the top ten highest paid athletes list for 2022 according to Forbes.

10. Giannis Antetokounmpo – £67.7m per year
Antetokounmpo is the youngest member on this list at the age of 27, and plies his trade for the Milwaukee Bucks.

The Greek-Nigerian basketball player is already one of the most decorated players in NBA history and led his side to their first NBA title since 1971 last year.

9. Tom Brady – £70.2m per year
Brady is a seven-time Super Bowl winner and is still throwing touchdown passes even at the age of 45.

He may regret coming out of retirement – given the Bucs’ performances this campaign – but he is widely-regarded as the greatest Quarterback of all-time – and currently earns £70.2m per year.

8. Neymar Jr. – £72.8m per year
The Brazilian is the second Paris Saint-Germain player on this list after joining the French club for a world record £200m in 2017.

He has torn up European football ever since first joining Barcelona in 2013 and has 115 goals in 164 PSG games, while he has netted 75 in 122 for Brazil – Neymar earns £72.8m per year.

7. Canelo Alvarez – £75.3m per year
Canelo has won a number of world titles in four different weight classes from light middleweight to light heavyweight.

He’s won 58 of his 62 fights, with only two losses, while 39 of his wins have come via KO – the Mexican now earns £75.3m per year.

6. Roger Federer –  £75.9m per year
The legendary tennis player announced his retirement in September this year but still features in this list.

Having won the Wimbledon title a record eight times, Federer also spent 237 consecutive weeks ranked at No 1 in the world during his career – Federer earns £75.9m per year.

5. Kevin Durant – £77m per year
A two-time NBA champion, he is another era-defining basketball player to appear on this list.

He has featured in the NBA All-Star game on 12 occasions despite being only 34. Durant takes home £77m-per-year.

4. Steph Curry – £77.6m per year
A point-guard for Golden State Warriors, Curry is another basketball all-time great.

He is known as one of the greatest shooters in NBA history and is credited with changing the sport by encouraging teams & players to have more three-point shots.

Slotting in at fourth on the list, Curry currently earns £77.6m per year.

3. LeBron James –  £101.4m per year
Basketball legends don’t get much bigger than LeBron James, with the 37-year-old having won four NBA titles.

He is the first-ever player to accumulate up to $1bn in earnings as an active player in the league.

James is also a partner in Fenway Sports Group, meaning he is a part owner in several sporting clubs including Liverpool – he earns £101.4m per year.

2. Lionel Messi – £103.4m per year
He is widely-regarded as one of the greatest players of all time, Lionel Messi has already won seven Ballon d’Or titles.

A four-time Champions League winner, Messi has 799 goals for club and country in 1030 appearances.

The PSG superstar earns £103.4m per year meaning he is currently top of the Forbes list, and he will be dwarfed in salary by his old rival Ronaldo.

1 – Cristiano Ronaldo – £172.9m per year
Cristiano Ronaldo is also a blegendary footballer who has won 34 trophies in his career. He is also the leading international scorer of all-time with 118 goals.

If he does eventually complete the move to Saudi side Al Nassr, he will earn £173m a year.

Ronaldo is currently third on the highest-paid athletes list, earning £83.6m a year, meaning he will more than double his salary.

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