We take a look at the top 5 richest footballers in the world and estimate each players total net worth.
The Global football market was worth £10.1 billion last year, this figure is 8% higher than in 2013.
The exact audience figures are hard to quantify, however FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) said 909.6 million people tuned in to watch the 2010 World Cup final in South Africa.
The British Premier League has a huge global reach and is shown in 202 countries and watched by 160 million viewers in 613 million homes, a typical live audience for a single match is around 79.5 million.
As the above figures show, football is big business, but how does that filter down to its main stars or players? Here we take a look at the five richest footballers on the planet.
In reverse order:
Total wealth: £74 million
Wayne Rooney is a striker but has been used in other positions including midfield. He plays for and captains both Manchester United the English National Team.
He is currently reputed to be the wealthiest player in the English Premier League with an annual salary reported to be £13 million. Off the pitch, he has just been named as the NSPCC\’s (National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children) first ambassador for childhood.
Total wealth: £75 million
Zlatan Ibrahimović is a Swedish footballer who plays as a striker for French club Paris Saint-Germain in the French Ligue 1, he also captains the Swedish national team.
Despite a reputed salary last year of €15 million EUR (£10.5 million) much of his wealth comes from endorsement deals and smart investments. Zlatan has sponsorship deals with Nivea, Xbox, Volvo, and Dressman and his investments include a large property portfolio.
Total wealth: £97 million
At only 23 years old, Neymar is the one of the star players for both the Brazilian national team and the multi-talented FC Barcelona team.
His annual salary is €8.8 million (£5.6 million) a year, however Neymar is another player that has built the bulk of his wealth via endorsements that include agreements with the likes of Nike, Panasonic, Volkswagen, Red Bull, and many more.
Total wealth: £144 million
Arguably one of the two best soccer players in the world, Lionel Messi may be a magician on the pitch, but he also a shrewd businessman off it.
It is often debated whether he is the best player that has ever graced a football field, he has won the Ballon d’Or (FIFA World Player of the Year) four times and for this Barcelona pay him a whopping $50 million (£32 million) a year salary.
As expected for a player of his calibre, top name brands are just lining up to pay him to endorse their products, these include; Adidas, Samsung, Gillette, Gatorade, and Dolce & Gabbana.
Total wealth: £151 million
We now come to the number one richest player in world football, a guy that has everything a top footballer should possess, he is strong and has pace, he has fantastic ball control and scores sensational goals, we are of course talking about Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo.
For anyone who loves the sport of football, you cannot help but admire what a talent Ronaldo is and what he brings to the game. We are fortunate to be living in a time when possibly the two most exciting players that have ever existed are playing in the same era (Ronaldo and Messi).
In recognition of his supreme talent, Real Madrid pays him a hefty €18.2 million (£12.6 million) per year plus huge bonuses. Although this figure is well below the salary paid to Messi, Ronaldo has attained his huge wealth via amongst other things; his own clothing line (CR7), a very profitable property portfolio and of course many endorsement agreements with top brands.