Argentine soccer legend Lionel Messi is reportedly in talks with a Saudi Arabian team over a deal worth a jaw-dropping $400 million per year, according to a tweet from Joe Pompliano on Wednesday. This mammoth deal would more than double Cristiano Ronaldo’s current deal and make Messi the highest-paid sports star in the world. To put this into perspective, let’s examine how the earnings of top soccer and basketball stars compare to Messi’s potential salary.
With his reported $400 million per year deal, Lionel Messi would soar to the top of the list of highest-paid sports stars. Forbes recently released their top-ten highest-earning sports stars in 2023 and Lionel Messi sat in second behind fellow soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo. However, this deal would absolutely demolish anything anybody from any sport could bring to the table.
BREAKING: Lionel Messi is in talks with Saudi Arabia on a contract worth $400 million annually, according to @Telegraph.
That would be the most lucrative deal in the history of the sport, and it's $200 million more than Cristiano Ronaldo's current deal.
That's insane 🤯 pic.twitter.com/ZdT00gqi0s
— Joe Pompliano (@JoePompliano) May 3, 2023
The New Look Top Ten Highest-Paid Athletes List
Here’s an updated list of the top ten highest-paid athletes, with Messi’s potential deal included:
- Lionel Messi (new deal) – $400 million
- Cristiano Ronaldo – $136 million
- Kylian Mbappé – $120 million
- LeBron James – $119.5 million
- Canelo Álvarez – $110 million
- Dustin Johnson – $107 million
- Phil Mickelson – $106 million
- Stephen Curry – $100.4 million
- Roger Federer – $95.1 million
- Kevin Durant – $89.1 million
With this potential deal, Messi’s annual earnings would be a staggering 194% more than Ronaldo’s, the second-highest-paid soccer star. Kylian Mbappé, another top earner in soccer, would earn merely 30% of Messi’s potential earnings, a whopping $280 million less per year.
When comparing Messi’s potential earnings to basketball stars, LeBron James, the highest-paid NBA player, would also make $280 million less annually. This means that Messi’s potential earnings would be 335% higher than LeBron’s. Stephen Curry, another top NBA earner, would earn only 25.1% of Messi’s proposed salary.
It’s important to note that the rankings above consider both the athletes’ playing contracts and their non-playing contracts, such as endorsements. Ronaldo’s off-field earnings, which include endorsements and his extensive social media following, contribute significantly to his overall earnings. Similarly, LeBron James and Stephen Curry have built thriving businesses and investment portfolios, boosting their overall wealth.
If Messi signs this groundbreaking deal, the $400 million per year salary would set a new standard in sports earnings. This development would further cement his position as one of the most influential and wealthiest athletes in history. The potential deal would not only raise the bar for future sports contracts but also possibly result in increased endorsement opportunities for the soccer icon.
Lionel Messi’s rumored $400 million per year deal in Saudi Arabia would place him at the top of the highest-paid sports stars list, with earnings dwarfing those of top soccer and basketball athletes. This unprecedented contract could significantly influence future negotiations in the sports world and highlight the incredible earning potential for elite athletes. As the story develops, fans and fellow athletes will be keen to see how this potential deal shapes Messi’s career and the global sports landscape.
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