In a stunning financial feat, Cristiano Ronaldo has secured his place in the Guinness World Records by earning an astounding €125 million in 2023. This achievement surpasses the previous record set by Lionel Messi in 2022, who had earned €120 million.
Ronaldo and Messi, two long-standing rivals who have dominated the world of football for a generation, have consistently exhibited exceptional talent throughout their careers. Together, they have won an impressive 12 out of the last 14 Ballon d’Or awards. Although they spent the prime years of their respective careers on opposing sides of the Clasico rivalry, with Ronaldo representing Real Madrid and Messi donning the Barcelona jersey, both players are now winding down their illustrious careers outside of Europe’s top five leagues.
Following a controversial departure from Manchester United, Ronaldo joined Al-Nassr in January, a move that raised many eyebrows. Meanwhile, Messi chose a different path, declining an opportunity to join Ronaldo in Saudi Arabia and instead signing with David Beckham’s Inter Miami after his contract with Paris Saint-Germain expired in June.
Ronaldo and Messi continue to hold remarkable records in the world of football. They are the only two players to have scored more than 800 official goals for their clubs and national teams. While Messi has a slight edge over Ronaldo in terms of titles won, with 42 compared to Ronaldo’s 34, the Portuguese superstar boasts a higher goal tally, with 838 goals to his name compared to Messi’s 807. As a result of his exceptional earnings in 2023, Ronaldo has not only claimed the top spot on Forbes’ list of the world’s highest-paid athletes but has also earned himself a well-deserved Guinness World Records title.
According to reports, Ronaldo’s estimated earnings for the period leading up to May 1, 2023, reached a staggering $136 million (€125 million). This impressive income is divided between his on-field earnings, amounting to €42 million, and his off-field ventures, which accumulated €83 million throughout the year.
Ronaldo’s move to Al-Nassr has also paved the way for other notable transfers. Marcelo Brozovic from Inter Milan has followed in Ronaldo’s footsteps by joining the Saudi Arabian club. Meanwhile, Inter Miami has secured the signature of Sergio Busquets, Messi’s former Barcelona teammate, during this summer’s transfer window. It is anticipated that Jordi Alba and several other prominent players will soon join the growing trend of footballers making notable moves to new clubs.
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