The theme around this year’s Forbes list for the world’s 100 highest-paid athletes will be ‘what a difference a year makes,’ as last year’s top honoree in Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather is surprisingly not even on the 2019 list.
Instead, Lionel Messi earned the honor for the first time in his career, taking home $127 million while edging out fellow soccer stars Cristiano Ronaldo ($109 million) and Neymar ($105 million).
Otherwise, Canelo Alvarez ($94 million) and Roger Federer ($93.4 million) round out the top 5, as the NFL’s Russell Wilson ($89.5M) and Aaron Rodgers ($89.3M) along with the NBA’s LeBron James ($89M), Stephen Curry ($79.8M), and Kevin Durant ($65.4M) make up the top 10.
With that said, TMZ notes that Messi’s earnings are still well below Mayweather’s $285 million that he took home after the Conor McGregor fight last year, while his ‘retirement’ is likely the reason why he’s fallen out of the top 100 altogether.
As for the youngest player on the list, that honor goes to 20-year-old French soccer star Kylian Mbappe who plays for the Ligue 1 club Paris Saint-Germain and is already considered one of the best players in the world.