1. Lionel Messi
2019 Salary: $127 million
Lionel Messi is not just the highest-paid soccer player, but the highest-paid athlete in the world. Known as one of FC Barcelona's star players, the Argentinian player landed a new 4-year contract with the team in 2017. He currently makes $92 million a year in salary and bonuses. To supplement his salary, Messi boasts a lifelong sponsorship deal with Adidas, as well as smaller deals with Gatorade, Pepsi, and Huawei. This earns an additional $35 million a year in endorsements.
Lionel Messi
2. Cristiano Ronaldo
2019 Salary: $109 million
Cristiano Ronaldo is now the third-highest paid athlete in the world. He is often cited as one of the best soccer players of all time. In 2009, Ronaldo was transferred from the Manchester United team to Real Madrid, paying the most expensive transfer fee in history at the time. He continued playing with Real Madrid for the next 10 years. In July 2018, he signed a 4-year contract with the Italian team Juventus with a transfer fee of $117 million. This was the most an Italian team ever paid to acquire a player. Currently, Ronaldo is paid a salary of $65 million. In addition to his salary, Ronaldo boasts a lifetime contract with Nike. He also has dealt with Herbalife, EA Sports, and American Tourister, bringing his income up another $44 million. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Ronaldo's total worth is $460 million.
Cristiano Ronaldo
3. Neymar Jr.
2019 Salary: $105 million
Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior is best known for his expensive transfer, in which the Paris Saint-Germain team paid $263 million to the Barcelona team to acquire him. This remains the most expensive transfer fee in the sport's history. Neymar currently earns a salary of $75 million with the French team. In addition to his salary, the player has several endorsements that bolster his income. In 2011, he landed an 11-year contract with Nike. He also has dealt with Red Bull, EA Sports, Mastercard, and several other big-name companies - raking in an additional $30 million.
Neyamr Jr
4. Paul Pogba
2019 Salary: $33 million
At age 26, Paul Pogba is known as one of the world's most promising players. He began his senior career playing for Manchester United for a year before being transferred to the Italian Juventus, who he stayed with for four years. His time with Juventus helped him establish a reputation as a promising young player, allowing him to return to Manchester United and garner a then-record breaking transfer fee of 105 million euros. This is still the highest an English team has ever paid to acquire a soccer player. He currently earns a salary of $29 million a year. Compared to some other top-paid soccer players, Pogba engages in fewer endorsement deals. His primary endorsement is with Adidas, bringing in $4 million additional earnings.
Paul Pogba
5. Andrés Iniesta
2019 Salary: $32.5 million
Andrés Iniesta is known as the most decorated Spanish soccer player in history, garnering numerous titles and trophies throughout his career. He has spent the majority of his time with the Barcelona team as a center midfielder. In 2018, Iniesta signed a contract to join the Japanese team, Vissel Kobe. He currently makes $30 million a year in salary and bonuses. After moving on to the new team, the player ended his long-running sponsorship with Nike and signed on with Asics. He earns $2.5 million in sponsorships total. He also earns extra income from Bodega Iniesta, his winery in Albacete, Spain.
Andres Iniesta