Lionel Messi Is the Highest-Paid Soccer Player in the World. Among the 736 players in the 2018 World Cup and the hundreds of millions of soccer players worldwide, Lionel Messi is the highest-paid person competing in the sport. While his play speaks volumes on the field, Messi is known as a shy person off it. Yet he’s built a massive online presence of how Much Money Does Unicef Make A Year million social media followers, with 88 million on Facebook and 93 million on Instagram. Dive into Messi’s spending habits and you can see someone who has used his fortune to do some incredibly quirky things like building a soccer pitch next to his house and creating a theme park in China that will allow visitors to play alongside him through virtual reality.
Argentina is currently playing in Group D in the World Cup — their first game was this past weekend, where Messi missed a penalty kick against Iceland that many think cost the team the match. Daily Money Sign up to receive the latest updates and the smartest advice. At age 13, Messi traveled to Spain, where he signed his first contract with professional club FC Barcelona — the team then started to pay for his treatments. He quickly climbed through the franchise’s youth program, making his debut for the club’s top squad in 2004, when he was just 17. Since then, Messi has won FIFA’s Player of the Year award five times, led FC Barcelona to four Champions League titles, six Copas del Rey titles and nine La Liga titles. At over 600 career goals, Messi is the highest scoring player in his team’s history.
Much of that success has translated to international play, where Messi also holds the record for the most goals on the Argentinian national team, leading them to a gold medal at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing and to the 2014 World Cup finals. But he is still in search of that elusive first World Cup title. 111 million from salary, bonuses, and endorsements, Forbes reported. 33 million a year, through 2021. Messi also signed a lifetime endorsement deal with Adidas last year. 12 million per year Messi made in his previous deal with the apparel company. Messi’s other endorsements are a who’s who of top international brands, from Chinese telecom giant Huawei to sunglass company Hawkers to Gatorade and Pepsi. Earlier this year, he reached an endorsement deal with Chinese dairy firm Mengniu Group, the official milk company of the 2018 World Cup. Messi is also getting into the thrill-ride game, throwing his support behind a Chinese theme park bearing his name, which is set to open in 2020.
Virtual reality will allow park visitors to not only play alongside Messi but also speak to him, ESPN reports. The House That Soccer Built Like others with hundreds of millions to spend, Messi has taken a liking to luxury cars. Messi’s prime piece of real estate is an old home 16 miles outside Barcelona, in the town of Castelldefels, which has a view of the Catalan mountains and easy access to a nearby beach. The mansion’s modern aesthetic and panoramic windows make it a unique perch in the neighborhood’s verdurous hills. One of Messi’s recent expenses is far less glamorous. 288,000 fine to Spain for tax evasion in lieu of a 21-month prison sentence, the BBC reported.
Messi, who married childhood sweetheart Roccuzzo last summer, has three young kids: Thiago, Mateo, and Ciro. Pass It Forward While a prolific scorer, Messi is also known for assisting teammates on the pitch — and he’s brought that spirit of generosity to his wealth. The Lionel Messi Foundation, formed in 2007, helps vulnerable children around the world, especially those suffering from health ailments, as Messi once did. Last year the foundation helped build 20 classrooms in Syria as part of a partnership with UNICEF, for which Messi served as a goodwill ambassador. Money may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website.
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