Cristiano Ronaldo Tops Forbes List Of Highest-Paid Athletes In 2016


Cristiano Ronaldo is the world’s highest-paid athlete over the last 12 months according to Forbes. The Real Madrid star will make a ridiculous $88 million this year, topping rival FC Barcelona forward Lionel Messi, who will rake in $81.4 million.

Ronaldo will reportedly make $56 million in salary/winnings and $32 million in endorsements. The 31-year-old Portuguese forward was the third highest-paid athlete last year behind Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao.

LeBron James came in third on the list this year, with $77.2 million in total earnings ($23.2 million salary, $54 million endorsements), while Roger Federer was fourth ($67.8 million). The crazy thing about Federer’s number is that he only had $7.8 million in winnings last year, but made $60 million just from endorsements. That’s the highest endorsement total in the world, besting James by $6 million.

Kevin Durant ($56.2 million), Novak Djokovic ($55.8 million), Cam Newton ($41.1 million), Phil Mickelson ($52.9 million), Jordan Speith ($52.8 million) and Kobe Bryant ($50 million) round out the top 10 on this year’s list.

Some other fun facts:

  • Tiger Woods hasn’t won a PGA event since 2013, yet he still ranked 12th on the list. Woods had $300,000 in winnings last year, but hauled in $45 million in endorsements.
  • Joe Flacco was 14th on the list, thanks to being the highest-paid football player in the salary/winnings category. Flacco made $44 million last year, and added $500,000 in endorsement money.
  • Formula 1 drivers usually rank pretty high on this list, but the top driver this year was Lewis Hamilton who was 11th. Hamilton brought in $46 million.
  • Clayton Kershaw is the highest baseball player, he ranked 33rd and earned $32 million.
  • Cliff Lee, who hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2014, ranks 38th on the list, as he made $29.3 million ($29.2 million of which came via salary).
  • Jordan Spieth (22) is the youngest athlete listed, followed by Neymar (24) who made $37.5 million, and Kyrie Irving (24) who made $27.6 million.
  • Usain Bolt ranks 32nd, he made just $2.5 million in salary, but earned $30 million in endorsements.