Ballon d’Or rich list – Ronaldo’s net worth and star who spent £435k on a watch

IT’S football’s most prestigious award given to the best player in the world.

And with this year’s Ballon d’Or ceremony taking place on Monday October 30, Erling Haaland and Lionel Messi are the hot favourites to take it home.

Along with Erling Haaland, Lionel Messi has been tipped to win this year's Ballon d'Or
Along with Erling Haaland, Lionel Messi has been tipped to win this year’s Ballon d’OrCredit: Getty Images – Getty
Cristiano Ronaldo has won the Ballon d’Or an impressive five times and tops the rich list
Cristiano Ronaldo has won the Ballon d’Or an impressive five times and tops the rich listCredit: Instagram / @cristiano

Argentinian superstar Messi has been tipped to win for the eighth time, while Haaland is also in the running after scoring 52 goals in his first season with Manchester City.

Since it first began almost 70 years ago, 64 players have won the prize – and with it has come, mostly, great fortune.

Here, we reveal the biggest earners in our Ballon d’Or rich list.

Cristiano Ronaldo – £363million

As well as being the most popular athlete – with over 876million social media followers – Cristiano Ronaldo is also the best paid sportsman in the world.

READ MORE IN FOOTBALL

The Portuguese star, who has won the Ballon d’Or an impressive five times, has an estimated net worth of a whopping £363million.

In December 2022, Ronaldo signed a two-and-a-half year deal with Saudi Arabian side Al-Nassr, earning £62million a year.

And thanks to the various commercial opportunities involved within the deal, it’s thought that he could earn as much as £173million for every year he is with the team.

The 38-year-old also has a lifetime contract with Nike, which began in 2003, worth an eye-watering £1billion.

As well as lending his name to other brands, Ronaldo has his own business empire. It includes two hotels, underwear, CR7 blankets, facial fitness devices and shampoo.

Lionel Messi – £105million

Lionel Messi, who has won the award seven times, is considered one of the greatest footballers of all time
Lionel Messi, who has won the award seven times, is considered one of the greatest footballers of all timeCredit: AP:Associated Press
His business ventures include a hotel empire
His business ventures include a hotel empireCredit: Instagram @leomessi

He’s considered one of greatest footballers of all time, so it’s no surprise that Lionel Messi is tipped to win the Ballon d’Or – after already bagging the award a record seven times.

The former Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain player moved to David Beckham’s Inter Miami in June after signing an initial deal for two and a half years. He’s believed to be earning around £35-£47million per year.

Messi’s net worth at the start of 2023 was estimated to be £105million, according to Forbes. It has no doubt increased since his move to Inter Miami.

Along with his football salary, the 36-year-old has a range of sponsorship and brand deals that help boost his earnings.

He signed a lifetime contract with Adidas in 2017, worth £20.4million a year, and is also a global ambassador for Pepsi.

When it comes to his personal ventures, Messi released his luxury clothing label with Tommy Hilfiger’s sister Ginny Hilfiger in 2019.

He also became a hotelier in 2017 after buying the MiM Sitges in a coastal resort near Barcelona for £26million.

MiM has since opened other establishments in Ibiza, Mallorca, Baqueira and Sotogrande.

Kaka – £74million

AC Milan and Brazil playmaker Kaka holds the 2007 Ballon d'Or trophy in Paris
AC Milan and Brazil playmaker Kaka holds the 2007 Ballon d’Or trophy in Paris
He helped Milan overcome Liverpool in the Champions League final that same year
He helped Milan overcome Liverpool in the Champions League final that same yearCredit: Getty

Before Cristiano Ronaldo and Messi hogged the trophy for over a decade, the last player to beat them to it was Brazilian legend Kaka.

The playmaking superstar, 41, won the award in 2007, the same year he set up the winning goal for Milan in the Champions League final against Liverpool.

Two years earlier, he had tormented the English giants once again in Istanbul, only for them to turn it around in one of the most dramatic games of all time.

After retiring in 2017, Kaka is still reported to be worth £74million, thanks in part to his huge social media following.

He was the first athlete to gain over 10million followers on X, formerly known as Twitter, and has 22.7million fans on Instagram.

The savvy star has struck up lucrative deals with Global smart technology company OPPO, American Tourister and Playstation, whom he recently starred in a promo for alongside Gareth Bale.

Karim Benzema£62.5million

Karim Benzema won the prestigious award last year
Karim Benzema won the prestigious award last yearCredit: Reuters
He isn't afraid of flaunting his wealth on social media
He isn’t afraid of flaunting his wealth on social mediaCredit: Instagram / @karimbenzema

Former Real Madrid player Karim Benzema won the Ballon d’Or in 2022 and is worth around £62million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.

The French national reportedly earned £275,000 a week playing for the Spanish team, before leaving the club in June after 14 years.

He signed a megabucks deal to join Saudi Pro League club Al-Ittihad, and now earns £3.3million per week.

He clearly likes to flash the cash, rocking up to last year’s awards bash wearing a Richard Mille watch worth a staggering £435,000.

In his victory speech, Benzema, 35, said: “To see this prize in front of me makes me really proud. It was a childhood dream for me and all the work I have done, I never gave up.”

Michael Owen – £54.4million

Michael Owen took home the award in 2001
Michael Owen took home the award in 2001Credit: Presse Sports
The TV pundit has invested his fortune in racehorses
The TV pundit has invested his fortune in racehorsesCredit: themichaelowen/instagram

Michael Owen, who took home the award in 2001, has a reported £54.4million fortune.

The 43-year-old former striker played for the likes of Liverpool, Real Madrid, Newcastle United, Manchester United and Stoke City during his glittering career before retiring in 2013.

Since then, he has gone on to work as a pundit for BT Sport.

He’s also involved in breeding race horses and founded Manor House Stables, a racehorse training facility in Cheshire, with his wife Louise.

Zinedine Zidane – £52million

Zinedine Zidane's net worth is reportedly £52million
Zinedine Zidane’s net worth is reportedly £52millionCredit: AFP
The French legend knows how to live in style
The French legend knows how to live in styleCredit: zidane/instagram

French star Zinedine Zidane inspired his side to their World Cup victory in 1998, the same year he won the Ballon d’Or.

Following his successful football career as a player, he went into management, first with Real Madrid Castilla and then the senior squad.

He announced his retirement in 2018, before returning 10 months later. But he left for a second time in the summer of 2021.

Zidane, 51, earned £2.3million a year as Real Madrid’s manager, which doubled when he revived the team at the end of the 2015/2016 season.

While he’s currently without a job, his net worth is reportedly £52million.

Endorsement deals with brands such as Adidas, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior have contributed to his income.

Luís Figo – £41million

Portugal and Real Madrid star Luis Figo with his prestigious 2000 Ballon d’Or
Portugal and Real Madrid star Luis Figo with his prestigious 2000 Ballon d’OrCredit: AFP
The 50-year-old is married to model Helene Svedin
The 50-year-old is married to model Helene SvedinCredit: luis__figo/instagram

Portugese player Luís Figo’s controversial transfer from Barcelona to rival Real Madrid in 2000 – the year he bagged the Ballon d’Or – set the world record fee of £50million.

He enjoyed a great success at the club, where he earned £3.74million a year, with 45 goals and 58 assists in 249 appearances throughout a five-year stint.

The 50-year-old, now worth around £41million according to Idol Net Worth, joined UEFA in 2017 as he took on an advisory role, promoting its competitions across the world.

“Luís Figo was a fantastic player who was exemplary in the way he conducted himself both on and off the pitch,” the UEFA president said.

“He is a highly respected figure within the game and I am very pleased he is joining our team. His tremendous football experience will be a very valuable asset to UEFA.”

Fabio Cannavaro – £36million

Fabio Cannavaro is now a professional football coach
Fabio Cannavaro is now a professional football coachCredit: L’Equipe
Fabio is now a coach and earned millions in the Chinese Super League
Fabio is now a coach and earned millions in the Chinese Super LeagueCredit: fabiocannavaroofficial/instagram

Former Italy captain Fabio Cannavaro, who won both the World Cup and Ballon d’Or in 2006, is said to be worth £36million.

The 50-year old was regarded as one of the best defenders of all time before retiring in 2011.

He’s now a professional football coach and has coached teams in the Middle East and China.

He was briefly appointed as manager of the China national team in 2019 and more recently, he was the head coach of Serie B club Benevento.

It was previously reported that he was the highest paid manager in the Chinese Super League, where he managed for five seasons, and the fourth highest paid in the world, earning £10.6million a year.

Ronaldinho – Unclear

Ronaldinho was reported to have just £5 in his back account in 2018
Ronaldinho was reported to have just £5 in his back account in 2018Credit: Reuters
He was the face of football in the early Noughties
He was the face of football in the early NoughtiesCredit: ronaldinho/instagram

Brazilian World Cup winner Ronaldinho has previously had a net worth reported up to £80million, but has lose thousands to crushing debts.

He was reported to have just £5 in his back account in 2018 – the same year he announced his retirement from football – while owing up to £1.75million.

The 43-year-old was heavily fined for illegal construction in a protected area in his home country.

After remortgaging his property, he was still unable to cover the debts due to the high interest rate and a judge ordered for his passport to be seized.

In 2020, he was detained in a prison in Paraguay for allegedly attempting to enter the country with forged documents.

READ MORE SUN STORIES

Ronaldinho, who won the Ballon d’Or in 2005, has had endorsements with companies including Nike, Pepsi, Coca-Cola, EA Sports and Danone.

He currently works for sponsorship and development firm Nooke, and he’s also the co-founder of Footsider, which is described as an “application that facilitates and digitizes recruitment in the world of football”.

Related Posts

Leverkusen is about to lose its first star

Leverkusen is about to lose its first star Full-back Jeremie Frimpong will almost leave Bayer Leverkusen in the summer transfer window Bild revealed that Frimpong’s representative believes that his client will definitely part ways with …

Winning hard against Newcastle, MU holds on to a fragile hope of participating in the European Cup

Winning hard against Newcastle, MU holds on to a fragile hope of participating in the European Cup The goals of young stars helped Man Utd overcome Newcastle in the compensation match of round 34 of the Premier League. Playing at home, …

3 scenarios for Man Utd to attend the European Cup next season – Wonderfully Fantastic

3 scenarios for Man Utd to attend the European Cup next season Fans are hoping that Man Utd can participate in the European Cup next season and coach Erik ten Hag and his team still have 3 opportunities for this to happen. In the compensation …

The player who twice blocked Mbappe is still left out of the German squad for EURO 2024

The player who twice blocked Mbappe is still left out of the German squad for EURO 2024 Continuously shining to help Dortmund defeat PSG in the semi-finals of the European Cup, Mats Hummels was still removed from the German squad for …

Premier League considers eliminating VAR from next season

Premier League considers eliminating VAR from next season The Premier League confirmed that it will hold a vote on the possibility of stopping the use of VAR in the tournament in the 2024/25 season. The Premier League organizers have …

image

Leo Messi at the age of 19

Leo Messi at 19 years old Let’s admire some never-before-published photos of Messi at the age of 19

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *