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Messi beats Ronaldo in 2019 Forbes rich list

Gab Marcotti dissects the rivalry between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi fans and finds it "odd" how supporters of one generally dislike the other.
The FC crew discuss Cristiano Ronaldo's impactful return for Portugal after he netted three goals to send them to the UEFA Nations League final.
Cristiano Ronaldo came to the rescue with a treble for Portugal after a spirited Switzerland had equalized following a lengthy VAR inquest.

Lionel Messi has topped Forbes' list of the world's highest-paid athletes as soccer players dominated the podium in 2019.

The Barcelona forward earned $127 million this past year in a combination of his salary and endorsements -- $18 million more than second-place Cristiano Ronaldo, who pocketed a total of $109m.

Neymar was the third-highest on the list, having earned $105m this past year. The Brazil international took in $75m in salary, which was $10m more than Ronaldo, while Messi's income of $92m dwarfed both.

However, the Juventus forward made $44m in endorsements, which was higher than Messi's $35m and Neymar's $30m.

Messi saw his earnings increase by $16m over the past 12 months. The $111m he made in 2018 saw him finish second to Floyd Mayweather ($285m). Ronaldo ($108m) was third with Neymar ($90m) in fifth. Conor McGregor ($99m) had finished fourth.

Boxer Saul "Canelo" Alvarez was the highest-earning non-footballer on the 2019 list, with $94m in total -- just $2m of which came through endorsements, meaning he had the same salary as Messi.

Tennis player Roger Federer was the fifth highest-earner, at $93.4m. He was No. 1 in terms of endorsements, though, with $86m.

Football stars Russell Wilson ($89.5m) and Aaron Rodgers ($89.3m) were sixth and seventh, respectively, on the list, as three NBA players came in next.

LeBron James earned $89m in total with Stephen Curry having made $79.8m and Kevin Durant $65.4m.

Top-10 highest-paid athletes of 2019

1. Lionel Messi, soccer: $127m

2. Cristiano Ronaldo, soccer: $109m

3. Neymar, soccer: $105m

4. Saul "Canelo" Alvarez, boxer: $94m

5. Roger Federer, tennis: $93.4m

6. Russell Wilson, football: $89.5m

7. Aaron Rodgers, football: $89.3m

8. LeBron James, basketball: $89m

9. Stephen Curry, basketball: $79.8m

10. Kevin Durant, basketball: $65.4m

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