In the Forbes Highest Paid Athletes list, no U.S. athletes break into the Top 5

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No U.S. athletes crack the top five of Forbes’ annual list of the world’s highest paid athletes.

The highest paid athlete this year is soccer star Lionel Messi who tops the Forbes 2019 list with $127 Million in compensation. The FC Barcelona captain and forward earned $92 Million from salary and $35 Million from endorsements.

The three highest paid athletes in the world were soccer players.

Boxer Canelo Alvarez ranks fourth on the list with $94 Million in compensation. Most of that came from winnings with only $2 Million coming from endorsements.

Tennis star Roger Federer ranks fifth with $93.4 Million total compensation. Only $7.4 Million of that came from winnings. The remaining $86 Million came from endorsements.

The highest paid U.S. athlete on the list is Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson. He ranked sixth, pulling in $89.5 Million. $9 Million of that come from endorsements.

LeBron James is the highest paid basketball player, coming in at number eight on the list. The Los Angeles Lakers small forward earned $89 Million with $36 Million coming from salary and $53 Million coming from endorsements.

Tiger Woods is the highest paid golfer on the list. Ranked 11th he earned $63.9 Million; $9.9 Million from winnings and $54 Million from endorsements.

Mike Trout is the highest paid baseball player ranking 17th on the list. The Los Angeles Angels centerfielder earned $50.6 Million. $3 Million of that came from endorsements.

Tennis star Serena Williams is the only female athlete to make the list. She ranked 63rd with annual earnings of $29.2 Million. $4.2 Million of that came from winnings. $25 Million was earned through endorsements.

  • Two Formula 1 drivers made the list.
  • No NASCAR drivers made the list.
  • No hockey players made the list.

Listed by sport, here’s a breakdown of the Forbes 2019 list of the 100 highest paid athletes in the world:

  • 35 NBA basketball players
  • 19 NFL football players
  • 15 MLB baseball players
  • 12 Soccer players
  • 5 Boxers
  • 5 Tennis players
  • 5 Golfers
  • 2 Formula 1 drivers
  • 1 MMA fighter
  • 1 Cricket player
  • 0 NHL Hockey Players
  • 0 NASCAR Drivers

To see how much each athlete on the list earned, click to the official list here.

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