Messi zooms past Ronaldo as top earner
Lionel Messi of Barcelona and Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo will once more be the main protagonists at Camp Nou. (Manu Fernandez, AP)
Paris - Lionel Messi has overtaken Cristiano Ronaldo as the highest earner in world football while Jose Mourinho tops the managers' chart, according to France Football magazine.
The Barcelona attacker is a long way ahead in the figures for the current season, pulling in €126 million in salary, bonuses and commercial revenue while his great Real Madrid rival is making €94m.
Last season 'CR7' led with €87.5m with Messi on €76.5m.
That works out at €25 000 per minute (R375 000) pitch time this season for Messi in La Liga, the Champions League, the Spanish Cup and Supercup and four international appearances for Argentina this season, and assuming he plays all of Barcelona's five remaining games.
The two players who have split the last 10 Ballons d'Or are followed by Paris Saint-Germain's Brazilian star Neymar on €81.5m in the calculations to be published by France Football on Tuesday and released to AFP on Monday.
There is a big gap to Ronaldo's Real team-mate Gareth Bale on €44m and Barca defender Gerard Pique on €29m.
Among coaches, Manchester United's Mourinho remains the biggest earner with €26m.
Next comes China boss Marcello Lippi on €23m, followed by Diego Simeone at Atletico Madrid, Zinedine Zidane, who has won the last two Champions League titles at Real and Pep Guardiola, who has just led Manchester City to the English Premier League.
Top 5 player earners (gross wages, bonuses and commercial revenue in the 2017/18 season):
1. Lionel Messi (ARG/Barcelona): €126m
2. Cristiano Ronaldo (POR/Real Madrid: €94m
3. Neymar (BRA/Paris Saint-Germain): €81.5m
4. Gareth Bale (WAL/Real Madrid): €44m
5. Gerard Pique (ESP/Barcelona): €29m
Top 5 managers (gross wages, bonuses and commercial revenue in the 2017/18 season):
1. Jose Mourinho (POR/Manchester United): €26m
2. Marcello Lippi (ITA/China): €23m
3. Diego Simeone (ARG/Atletico Madrid): €22m
4. Zinedine Zidane (FRA/Real Madrid): €21m
5. Pep Guardiola (ESP/Manchester City): €20m