Bengaluru, May 12: Argentina and Paris Saint-Germain superstar footballer Lionel Messi was the world's highest paid athlete over the last year (May 1, 2021 to May 1, 2022), according to the list released by Forbes.
With a pre-tax gross earnings of $130 million in the last 12 months, Messi tops Forbes' annual ranking for the world's highest-paid athletes and also claims the top spot for the second time in four years.
In 2021, Messi finished second behind UFC star Conor McGregor, and in 2020, he finished third behind Tennis great Roger Federer and football rival Cristiano Ronaldo. In 2019, the Argentine superstar topped the list.
NBA great LeBron James takes the second spot with a total earning of $121.2 million followed by Portugal and Manchester United football star Ronaldo in third with a total earning of $115 million.
The list is dominated by football and basketball stars including Kevin Durant, Neymar, Stephen Curry and Giannis Antetokounmpo, while NFL legend Tom Brady, Tennis legend Federer and Boxer Saul Canelo Alvarez make up the top 10.
Here is the list for Forbes World's Highest Paid Athletes in 2022:
|Ranking||Name of Athlete||Nationality||Sport||Total Earnings|
|1||Lionel Messi||Argentina||Football||$130 million|
|2||LeBron James||USA||Basketball||$121.2 million|
|3||Cristiano Ronaldo||Portugal||Football||$115 million|
|5||Stephen Curry||USA||Basketball||$92.8 million|
|6||Kevin Durant||USA||Basketball||$92.1 million|
|7||Roger Federer||Switzerland||Tennis||$90.7 million|
|8||Saul Canolo Alvarez||Mexico||Boxing||$90 million|
|9||Tom Brady||USA||American Football||$83.9 million|
|10||Giannis Antetokounmpo||Greece||Basketball||$80.9 million|