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Messi surpasses Cristiano Ronaldo as world’s best paid footballer

The latest figures show how Lionel Messi leapfrogged Cristiano Ronaldo in the best-paid footballer stakes during 2017.

Boasting sponsorship contracts with Adidas, Gatorade, Pepsi, Ooredoo, Huawei and Hawkers, the Argentine has numerous ways to supplement his Barcelona wage and will even be opening his own theme park in China in 2020.

Such deals equate to Messi earning 111 million US dollars in the last calendar year, in line with Forbes.

Cristiano Ronaldo, meanwhile, brought home 108m US dollars thanks to sponsorship from Nike, Herbalife, EA Sports, American Tourister, and his own CR7 brand of hotels, fragrances and more.

The Forbes list places Floyd Mayweather at the prime of the pile thanks to the boxer’s 285m US dollars worth of earnings in 2017, with Messi eighth among his fellow sports stars as well as actors and musicians.

Barcelona handed a new contract to their talisman in November to increase his annual wage to over 80m US dollars with Ronaldo recently joining Juventus to move nearer to his rival’s pay packet.

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