By 90Min
April 24, 2018

Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi is by far the highest paid player in the world this season and will finish the campaign having earned in excess of €30m more than rival Cristiano Ronaldo.

Messi signed a new contract with Barça in November that is thought to be a major factor behind propelling him ahead of Real Madrid's Ronaldo.

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Neymar was also thought to be ahead of Ronaldo in terms of basic wages following his summer move to PSG, but the Brazilian remains behind the Portuguese overall as France Football's list also takes into account all bonuses and sponsorship income.

Messi's overall income this season will total an estimated €126m, ahead of Ronaldo on €94m, and Neymar on €81.5m. The trio, who were Ballon d'Or finalists together in 2015 and 2017, are way ahead of the rest of the world's best paid players this season.

Ronaldo's Real teammate Gareth Bale is fourth on the list with earnings of €44m, while Barcelona defender Gerard Pique is next on €29m, almost €100m less than Messi.

Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/GettyImages

La Liga players dominate the top 10, with LA Galaxy's Zlatan Ibrahimovic the only player other than Neymar not at a Spanish club. The Swede famously took a massive pay cut to join the Californian franchise, but his other incomes have been booming this season.

Others playing in England, China and Germany feature in the top 20:

Player Club 2017/18 Earnings (€)
Lionel Messi Barcelona (ESP) €126m
Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid (ESP) €94m
Neymar Paris Saint-Germain (FRA) €81.5m
Gareth Bale Real Madrid (ESP) €44m
Gerard Pique Barcelona (ESP) €29m
Toni Kroos Real Madrid (ESP) €28m
Sergio Ramos Real Madrid (ESP) €27.5m
Zlatan Ibrahimovic LA Galaxy (USA) €27m
Antoine Griezmann Atletcio Madrid (ESP) €26m
Luis Suarez Barcelona (ESP) €26m
Andres Iniesta Barcelona (ESP) €25.5m
Ezequiel Lavezzi Hebei China Fortune (CHN) €25m
Alexis Sanchez Manchester United (ENG) €23.5m
Karim Benzema Real Madrid (ESP) €23.5m
Thomas Muller Bayern Munich (GER) €23m
Edinson Cavani Paris Saint-Germain (FRA) €22.5m
Oscar Shanghai SIPG (CHN) €22m
Robert Lewandowski Bayern Munich (GER) €22m
Paul Pogba Manchester United (ENG) €22m
Manuel Neuer Bayern Munich (GER) €21m

Messi is the first footballer to earn more than €100m in a single season.

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