Juventus superstar Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona's Lionel Messi have been unable to assume the status of being the world's richest sports personalities following the emergence of the coronavirus, a report by Forbes has revealed. The pair was denied the No.1 spot by tennis icon Roger Federer but featured in the Top 3 together for the fourth year running.
All over the world, the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic has had adverse implications on the finances of organizations and individuals alike. Football players have also not been spared.
For both Ronaldo and Messi, the situation has led their respective clubs to lower their wages in order to help them balance their books. Back in March, the Portuguese forward and his Juventus teammates agreed to take a four-month pay cut. Relatively, his Argentine nemesis and his comrades at Barca were made to accept a 70 percent cut on salary as a result of the outbreak.
In the wake of the decision, the annual earnings of the two players dropped drastically for the first time in four years. Lionel Messi, who succeeded Floyd Mayweather as Forbes' highest-earning sports personality last year, has now been demoted to third place in the 2020 edition of the rankings. The 32-year-old Argentine star amassed $127 Million in 2019 but has earned $104.4 million in the past 12 months.
Cristiano Ronaldo, the world's richest sportsman in 2016 and 2017, was ranked No.2 by Forbes with a net income of $105.4 million. The former Real Madrid superstar earned $109 million in 2019 and $108 million in 2018 respectively.
Roger Federer's $106.3 million in the calendar year was enough to earn him the top spot on Forbes list. Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar Jr and Los Angeles Lakers' Lebron James completed the Top 5 with $95.9 million and $88.5 million respectively.
Click here to view the full 2020 list by Forbes.