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Top 10 Richest Sports Persons in the World


  10. Matt Ryan


Age: 29

Sport: Football

Total Earnings: $43.8 Million

Salary/Winnings: $42 Million

Endorsements: $1.8 Million

 Residence: Duluth, GA

Citizenship: United States

Matt Ryan might not be one of the most famous sportsmen in the world, but this American football player earns more than other great players like Neymar, MS Dhoni and Lewis Hamilton. Currently he is the quarterback for Atlanta Falcons. The 10th highest paid athlete has an annual earnings of $43.8 million. He also signed a new contract last year and as a result became the team’s quarterback.

He signed a five-year contract for $103.75 million with Atlanta Falcons last year which included a $28 million signing bonus and $12 million option bonus.


  1. Rafael Nadal


Age: 28

Sport: Tennis

Total Earnings: $44.5 Million

Salary/Winnings: $14.5 Million

Endorsements: $30 Million

 Residence: Manacor, Spain

Citizenship: Spain

Rafael Nadal’s way of playing is definitely unpleasant for any opponent because of his aggressive approach and dynamic technique. This Spaniard has often been hindered by injuries, but he has always fought his way back into the court. The fighting spirit, which is evident in his every move on court, has enabled him to not only win trophies but also earn humongous monetary rewards. His yearly earnings’ total amount makes him the 9th highest paid athlete.

His biggest endorsement partner in brands is Nike, which has made him one of the best paid athlete in the world. His remunerations are heavily tied to his year-end rankings. He has also signed deals with other sponsors like Babolat, Mapfre, Poker Stars, Banc Sabadell Atlantico, Mueller, Richard Mille and Kia Motors.


  1. Phil Mickelson


Age: 44

Sport: Golf

Total Earnings: $53.2 Million

Salary/Winnings: $5.2 Million

Endorsements: $48 Million 

 Residence: Rancho Santa Fe, CA

Citizenship: United States

Phil Mickelson is perhaps one of the most chilled out sportsmen in the list of top ten highest paid athletes of 2015. The 44-year-old US golfer has managed to win over 50 tournament in his career. He has a yearly salary of $53.2 million. Mickelson picked up valuable sponsor bonuses last year after he won the British Open. He earns around $40 million annually just from his appearances and the rest from his sponsors like Callaway, KPMG, Barclay’s, Exxon Mobil, Pfizer and Rolex.

He signed a deal to promote psoriatic arthritis drug Enbrel after he was diagnosed with the same disease in 2010. Phil Mickelson has recorded 42 PGA victories (ninth all-time), which enabled him to earn $74 million in career prize money (second all-time). He has won five major titles, which has definitely helped him to feature in this list.


  1. Roger Federer


Age: 33

Sport: Tennis

Total Earnings: $56.2 Million

Salary/Winnings: $4.2 Million

Endorsements: $52 Million

 Residence: Bottmingen, Switzerland

Citizenship: Switzerland

Although sometimes his rivals Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal seemed to have taken over on the court, this Tennis legend (namely the Swiss guarantee) Roger Federer still earns the most in the world of tennis. Even though he has not been able to add to his list of 17 Grand Slam titles, his list of endorsements is the main reason why he earns $56.2 million annually, which makes him the 7th highest paid athlete in the world.

His endorsement portfolio is filled with long-term deals that definitely place him among the highest paid athletes in the world. His sponsors like Nike, Rolex and Credit Suisse collectively pay him more than $40 million per year. The latest addition to this list is the champagne brand Moet & Chandon.


  1. Tiger Woods


Age: 38

Sport: Golf

Total Earnings: $61.2 Million

Salary/Winnings: $6.2 Million

Endorsements: $55 Million

 Residence: Jupiter Island, FL

Citizenship: United States

Tiger Woods currently is not playing the best golf of his life but he still pulls in a remarkable earning of $61.2 million per year, which makes him the 6th highest paid athlete in the world.

Woods became the first sportsman ever to earn over $1 billion. He underwent a back surgery at the end of March that sidelined him for the Masters for the first time in his career. This was the biggest hurdle in the road of Wood’s quest to break Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 major titles. The major part of his earnings comes from his endorsements. His eponymous video game, which had 16 versions, generated around $800 million in sales. Nike also renewed the deal with Woods in 2013 and designed a golf division on the back of Woods which registered sales worth of $791 million. He is on the list of the highest paid athletes primarily because of his past exploits and sponsors that followed those exploits.


  1. Kobe Bryant


Age: 36

Sport: Basketball

Total Earnings: $61.5 Million

Salary/Winnings: $30.5 Million 

Endorsements: $31 Million

 Residence: Newport Beach, CA

Citizenship: United States

Kobe’s career in the NBA has been nothing short of an epic story. Kobe Bryant has played in 16 NBA All-Star games and has been NBA champion five times. At present, he is playing for The LA Lakers. Despite being 36-years-old, he remains one of the most iconic players of basketball.

Bryant had the highest salary in the NBA for the fourth straight year during last season. The total of $30.5 million salary is nearly $8 million higher than that of any other Basketball player. He also inked a two-year $48.5 million contract extension in November 2013.

Bryant’s jersey was the NBA’s third best seller during the season 2013-2014. He ranks fourth on the NBA’s all-time scoring list and has deals with Turkish Air, Hublot, Nike and Lenovo. As a whole, these endorsements are worth more than $30 million per year.


  1. Lionel Messi


Age: 27

Sport: Soccer

Total Earnings: $64.7 Million

Salary/Winnings: $41.7 Million

Endorsements: $23 Million

 Residence: Castelldefels, Spain

Citizenship: Argentina

Lionel Messi is the world’s fourth highest earning athlete. He had grabbed people’s attention at a much younger age than LeBron James and many other great athletes did. This youngster from Argentina moved to Barcelona, Spanish football club, and developed his skills and technique. Messi finished as runner up in 2013 Ballon d’Or after winning it for a record four consecutive times. He has many big brands like Adidas, who launched his signature shoe collection last year, as his sponsors. The Turkish Airlines also signed him with NBA superstar Kobe Bryant and jointly these brands have invested heavily in Barcelona’s most prolific footballer.


  1. LeBron James


Age: 29

Sport: Basketball

Total Earnings: $72.3 Million

Salary/Winnings: $19.3 Million

Endorsements: $53 Million

 Residence: Coconut Grove, FL

Citizenship: United States

He has been awarded NBA’s Most Valuable Player four times. Apart from being a global ambassador for his sport, he is also the third highest paid athlete in the world.

The four MVP awards have made LeBron James NBA’s biggest endorsement star and has big brands like Nike, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s and Upper Deck. Earnings from his signature Nike shoes were on the top among all the active players, at a value of $300 million.


  1. Cristiano Ronaldo


Age: 29

Sport: Soccer

Total Earnings: $80 Million

Salary/Winnings: $52 Million

Endorsements: $28 Million

 Residence: Madrid, Spain

Citizenship: Portugal

Cristiano Ronaldo is undoubtedly one of the most complete footballers of our time. It is not surprising that the major part of his earnings comes from his own fashion label. This 2nd highest paid athlete in the world currently earns a total of $80 million per year.

This Real Madrid icon from Portugal was voted the sports’ most valuable player recently for the second time after he scored 69 goals in 59 club and country matches. Real Madrid rewarded him with a record 5-year contract which was worth more than $200 million. Ronaldo’s photogenic looks and well-built body have helped him to crack lucrative deals with brands like Tag Heuer. A Personal Brand of underwear labeled CR7 only adds to his financial might.


  1. Floyd Mayweather


Age: 37

Sport: Boxing

Total Earnings: $105 Million

Salary/Winnings: $105 Million

Endorsements: 0

 Residence: Las Vegas, NV

Citizenship: United States

47 fights - 47 wins is an unbeatable record and this makes Floyd Mayweather Jr. an ace in the field of boxing and provides him valuable substance to market. The 37-year-old boxing welterweight world champion is the highest paid athlete in the sporting world. He is the only athlete to earn more than $100 million per year. His fight against Canelo Alvarez in September 2013 set records for highest PPV gross, which is more than $150 million and the Canelo Fight marked the second bout in the blockbuster 30-month.

Mayweather earned a guaranteed $32 million for his May fight with Marcos Maidana. That time the PPV buys were expected to finish between $900,000 and one million. In comparison with the previous record of 2.2 million for Mayweather-Alvarez fight, Mayweather pocketed $105 million for two bouts, thanks to his role as both pugilist and promoter. Recently, Mayweather was involved with Manny Pacquiao in what was termed as the “The Fight of the Century”. He emerged victorious in the match taking his record to 48-0 and earning $179,808,511 as the prize money. Clearly, he deserves to be at the top in the list of the current richest sportspersons.


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