Forbes have released their annual list of the highest-earning footballers with Lionel Messi taking top spot for the third consecutive year in 2020.
The Barcelona superstar and reigning Ballon d’Or winner has once again finished ahead of his nearest rivals with estimated earnings in the region of $126m (£97.2m), a figure made up of his huge salary at the Camp Nou, in addition to lucrative sponsorship deals with leading brands such as Adidas and Pepsi.
Cristiano Ronaldo finished behind his long-time rival with estimated earnings of $117m (£90.3m), with the top three places once again occupied by the Messi, Ronaldo and Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar, the latter earning a reported $96m (£74.1m).
There was a significant drop to the remainder of the top 10, according to Forbes, with Kylian Mbappe – up three places from last year into fourth – earning an estimated $42m (£32.4m), a testament to his ever-increasing status with the youngster having arguably overtaken PSG teammate Neymar as the leading figure for the French champions.
The Premier League‘s highest-earning player was Liverpool‘s Mohamed Salah, the Egypt international reportedly bringing in a figure of $37m (£28.5m), whilst English football was also represented in the top 10 by Manchester United duo Paul Pogba (6th – £26.2m) and David de Gea (10th – £20.8m).
Gareth Bale also made the top 10 despite a difficult season with Real Madrid, the unwanted Welsh winger earning an estimated $29m (£22.4m) to finish eighth, one place higher than Bayern Munich treble winner Robert Lewandowski $28m (£21.6m).