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Cristiano Ronaldo named world's highest paid athlete while Rory McIlroy makes top 10

By Jack O'Toole

Cristiano Ronaldo has been named as the world's highest-paid athlete in a report released by US business magazine Forbes.

Ronaldo has enjoyed a stellar 2016/2017 where picked up his fourth Ballon d'Or award, a Euro 2016 winners medal with Portugal last summer, as well as a La Liga and Champions League double with Real Madrid.

The 32-year-old was also recently named as the cover athlete for EA Sports' FIFA 18, with his projected earnings rising to $93 million (€82.74m) over the past year, up $5 million (€4.45m) from 2015/2016.

Longtime rival Leo Messi has dropped down to third on the list with three-time NBA champion LeBron James moving into second place with projected earnings of $86.2 million (€76.69m).

Meanwhile world number two golfer Rory McIlroy has broken into the top ten on the list, with projected earnings of $50 million (€44.48m), tied for sixth place on the list with Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck.

Elsewhere Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton came in at #10 with projected earnings of $46 million (€40.92m), while golfers Phil Mickelson (€38.70m) and Tiger Woods (€33m) came in at #12 and #17 respectively.

Meanwhile Irish MMA star Conor McGregor ranked at number 24 on the list with a projected annual earning of $34 million (€30.25m), tied with Real Madrid winger Gareth Bale.

For the second consecutive year basketball players dominated the list with James, Kevin Durant (#5), Steph Curry (#8) and James Harden (#9) occupying four spots inside the top 10, while Russell Westbrook (#13), Damian Lillard (#15) and Dwyane Wade (#19) taking up a further three spots inside the top 20.

The full list can be seen below:

Rank Name Pay Salary/Winnings Endorsements Sport

#1 Cristiano Ronaldo $93 M $58 M $35 M Soccer

#2 LeBron James $86.2 M $31.2 M $55 M Basketball

#3 Lionel Messi $80 M $53 M $27 M Soccer

#4 Roger Federer $64 M $6 M $58 M Tennis

#5 Kevin Durant $60.6 M $26.6 M $34 M Basketball

#6 Andrew Luck $50 M $47 M $3 M Football

#6 Rory McIlroy $50 M $16 M $34 M Golf

#8 Stephen Curry $47.3 M $12.3 M $35 M Basketball

#9 James Harden $46.6 M $26.6 M $20 M Basketball

#10 Lewis Hamilton $46 M $38 M $8 M Auto Racing

#11 Drew Brees $45.3 M $31.3 M $14 M Football

#12 Phil Mickelson $43.5 M $3.5 M $40 M Golf

#13 Russell Westbrook $38.6 M $26.6 M $12 M Basketball

#14 Sebastian Vettel $38.5 M $38 M $500 K Auto Racing

#15 Damian Lillard $38.4 M $24.4 M $14 M Basketball

#16 Novak Djokovic $37.6 M $9.6 M $28 M Tennis

#17 Tiger Woods $37.1 M $107 K $37 M Golf

#18 Neymar $37 M $15 M $22 M Soccer

#19 Dwyane Wade $36.2 M $23.2 M $13 M Basketball

#20 Fernando Alonso $36 M $34 M $2 M Auto racing

#21 Jordan Spieth $34.5 M $5.5 M $29 M Golf

#22 Derrick Rose $34.3 M $21.3 M $13 M Basketball

#23 Usain Bolt $34.2 M $2.2 M $32 M Track

#24 Gareth Bale $34 M $23 M $11 M Soccer

#24 Conor McGregor $34 M $27 M $7 M Mixed Martial Arts

#26 Kei Nishikori $33.9 M $3.9 M $30 M Tennis

#27 Fletcher Cox $33.4 M $33.3 M $75 K Football

#28 Clayton Kershaw $33.3 M $32.5 M $800 K Baseball

#29 Carmelo Anthony $32.6 M $24.6 M $8 M Basketball

#30 Zlatan Ibrahimovic $32 M $27 M $5 M Soccer

#31 Antonio Brown $31.9 M $29.4 M $2.5 M Football

#32 Demar DeRozan $31.6 M $26.6 M $5 M Basketball

#33 Rafael Nadal $37.5 M $5.5 M $32 M Tennis

#34 Eric Berry $31.1 M $30.8 M $300 K Football

#35 Chris Paul $30.9 M $22.9 M $8 M Basketball

#36 David Price $30.6 M $30 M $550 K Baseball

#37 Miguel Cabrera $30.3 M $28.3 M $2 M Baseball

#38 Kyrie Irving $29.9 M $17.9 M $12 M Basketball

#39 Stephon Gilmore $29.3 M $29.1 M $200 K Football

#40 Andy Murray $28.8 M $14.8 M $14 M Tennis

#40 Justin Verlander $28.8 M $28.2 M $600 K Baseball

#42 Mike Conley $28.6 M $26.6 M $2 M Basketball

#43 Canelo Alvarez $26.5 M $25 M $1.5 M Boxing

#44 Anthony Davis $28.1 M $22.1 M $6 M Basketball

#44 Blake Griffin $28.1 M $20.1 M $8 M Basketball

#44 Al Horford $28.1 M $26.6 M $1.5 M Basketball

#44 Von Miller $28.1 M $25.1 M $3 M Football

#48 Dustin Johnson $27.6 M $16.6 M $11 M Golf

#49 Albert Pujols $27.3 M $25.3 M $2 M Baseball

#50 Dwight Howard $27.2 M $23.2 M $4 M Basketball

#51 Ryan Howard $27 M $26.7 M $300 K Baseball

#51 Serena Williams $27 M $8 M $19 M Tennis

#53 Robinson Cano $27.1 M $24.1 M $3 M Baseball

#54 Kevin Love $26.4 M $21.4 M $5 M Basketball

#55 Chris Bosh $26.3 M $23.8 M $2.5 M Basketball

#56 Cam Newton $26 M $13 M $13 M Football

#56 Dirk Nowitzki $26 M $25 M $1 M Basketball

#58 Paul George $25.8 M $18.3 M $7.5 M Basketball

#58 Felix Hernandez $25.8 M $25.3 M $500 K Baseball

#60 Jason Pierre-Paul $25.7 M $25.5 M $200 K Football

#61 CC Sabathia $25.6 M $25 M $600 K Baseball

#62 David DeCastro $25.1 M $25 M $75 K Football

#63 Eli Manning $25 M $18 M $7 M Football

#64 Buster Posey $24.6 M $20.6 M $4 M Baseball

#65 Prince Fielder $24.2 M $24 M $200 K Baseball

#66 Josh Hamilton $24.1 M $24 M $100 K Baseball

#67 Zack Greinke $24.1 M $24 M $50 K Baseball

#68 Harrison Barnes $23.9 M $22.4 M $1.5 M Basketball

#69 Joe Mauer $23.8 M $23 M $800 K Baseball

#70 Wayne Rooney $23.6 M $17.6 M $6 M Soccer

#71 Bradley Beal $23.3 M $22.1 M $1.2 M Basketball

#71 Luis Suarez $23.3 M $17.3 M $6 M Soccer

#73 Matt Kalil $23.2 M $23.1 M $75 K Football

#74 Andre Drummond $23.1 M $22.1 M $1 M Basketball

#75 Masahiro Tanaka $23 M $22 M $1 M Baseball

#76 Chandler Jones $22.9 M $22.8 M $100 K Football

#76 Chandler Parsons $22.9 M $22.1 M $750 K Basketball

#78 Cole Hamels $22.7 M $22.5 M $200 K Baseball

#78 Hassan Whiteside $22.7 M $22.2 M $500 K Basketball

#80 Sergio Agüero $22.6 M $14.6 M $8 M Soccer

#81 Muhammad Wilkerson $22.4 M $22 M $400 K Football

#82 Nick Perry $22.3 M $22.2 M $100 K Football

#82 Hanley Ramirez $22.3 M $22 M $300 K Baseball

#82 Justin Upton $22.3 M $22.1 M $200 K Baseball

#85 Marc Gasol $22.2 M $21.2 M $1 M Basketball

#85 DeAndre Jordan $22.2 M $21.2 M $1 M Basketball

#87 LaMarcus Aldridge $22.1 M $20.6 M $1.5 M Basketball

#87 Jose Reyes $22.1 M $22 M $100 K Baseball

#89 Anthony Joshua $22 M $18.5 M $3.5 M Boxing

#89 Virat Kohli $22 M $3 M $19 M Cricket

#91 James Rodriguez $21.9 M $14.9 M $7 M Soccer

#91 Klay Thompson $21.9 M $16.9 M $5 M Basketball

#93 Jimmie Johnson $21.8 M $16.8 M $5 M Auto Racing

#94 Jacoby Ellsbury $21.01 M $21.1 M $600 K Baseball

#94 Adrian Gonzalez $21.7 M $21.3 M $400 K Baseball

#94 Matt Kemp $21.7 M $21.2 M $500 K Baseball

#94 Brook Lopez $21.7 M $21.2 M $500 K Basketball

#98 Nicolas Batum $21.41 M $20.9 M $600 K Basketball

#98 Wladimir Klitschko $21.5 M $17.5 M $4 M Boxing

#100 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. $21.4 M $13.4 M $8 M Auto Racing

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