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14.06.2021 » Ronaldo ranks third in the highest paid sports stars of 2021

Cristiano Ronaldo ranks third in Forbes list for 2021

Unlike what we've seen in previous years, this time Ronaldo didn't make it to the top of the Forbes list for the highest paid sports stars of 2021. The Portuguese legend saw Barcelona's Lionel Messi and UFC fighter Conor McGregor holding the top spots and had to settle with the third place.

Yes, the sports world has been minus a great deal of the paying public for much of the past 18 months but that doesn't appear to have led to the big-earners suffering a pay-cut, quite the opposite. Though stadiums and arenas have been empty for a year plus, it's evident that the real money lies in televised coverage and sponsorship tie-ins. Forbes' list of the highest-paid athletes is always a much anticipated event and one that has been ably reported on, and here's the top-end of the rich list...

Cristiano Ronaldo - How he became soccer's first billion dollar earner:

LeBron James (Los Angeles Lakers)

The 36-year-old is the NBA's biggest earner and continues to be an icon of the sport, hence his salary outstripping all his colleagues and competitors. The Los Angeles Lakers star has had to see his side slip out of the title picture for the current season but is still very much the leading ambassador of basketball.

His earnings are ably helped by off-court activities, such as his upcoming starring role in the long-awaited movie Space Jam: A New Legacy. His new deal with Pepsi, following his exit from Coca-Cola, is another big reason for his presence on this list.

Dak Prescott (Dallas Cowboys)

The 27-year-old Quarterback’s $66m signing bonus is the main reason that this Louisiana-born NFL star has made it up to number four on the list. It also helps that Prescott is the leading player at the world’s most valuable sports team.

His deals with DirecTV and 7/11 also helped to boost his annual earnings.

Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus)

The five-time Ballon d'Or winner, much like his long-running rival Lionel Messi, hasn't had the greatest season when it comes to titles. Juventus lost their grip on the Italian title and by all accounts, Ronaldo could be on his way out from the Turin side.

Euro 2020, finally taking place in 2021, may well be a chance for the former Man United and Real Madrid man to make a fresh impact.

Conor McGregor next to Cristiano Ronaldo

Lionel Messi (Barcelona)

The 33-year-old Argentine legend had a relatively poor season in terms of the accolades his Barcelona side failed to secure, namely La Liga and Champions League glory. However and on a personal level, Messi performed admirably, finishing as top scorer in Spain's top-tier.

Many had felt Messi was set to leave the Nou Camp, but he's still very much part of the club's set-up, especially now that his compatriot and good friend, Sergio Aguero, has now joined the Catalan giants.

Conor McGregor (UFC)

The mouthy Irishman is the top earner in sports and it's easy to see why. Whenever a new project awaits the 32-year-old Dubliner, his name trends worldwide. Defeat in UFC 257 hasn't hampered McGregor's earning potential and one wonders just what he'll get up to next.

Though his fighting career has netted him a fortune it's his whiskey brand, Proper No. Twelve that's helped to boost his yearly salary, which has dwarfed all his fellow sporting legends.

Conor McGregor top of Forbes list

Cristiano Ronaldo next game for Portugal is on June 15, against Hungary. You can watch Portugal vs Hungary, Argentina vs Chile, Spain vs Sweden, Scotland vs Czech Republic, Poland vs Slovakia, and France vs Germany, all matches provided from our football live game pages.

Portugal next game:
Portugal vs Hungary
kick-off time (15-06-2021):

Beijing (China) | UTC/GMT+8: 00:00
| UTC/GMT+7: 23:00
India (New Delhi) |
UTC/GMT+5.30: 21:30
Italy (Turin) |
UTC/GMT+2: 18:00
(Madrid) | UTC/GMT+2: 18:00
Portugal and England (Lisbon/London) | UTC/GMT+1: 17:00
Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) | UTC/GMT-3: 13:00
New York (United States) | UTC/GMT-4: 12:00
Los Angeles (United States) | UTC/GMT-7: 09:00

Sources: / /

Cristiano Ronaldo holding a smartphone

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