Cristiano Ronaldo has been named the world's richest footballer after topping the annual list of players' net worth compiled by Goal.
The Real Madrid superstar held off Barcelona rival Lionel Messi in the Goal Rich List 2014 with an estimated wealth of €148 million.
The Goal Rich List is collated by a team of analysts and takes into account all streams of
revenue for active footballers over the course of their careers.
Ronaldo succeeds David Beckham, who led the way on the 2013 list but called time on
his playing career last May. Only current professionals are eligible with the earnings of more than 200 contenders
assessed before Goal's experts finalised the top 10.
Ronaldo has enjoyed a remarkable 12 months in which his value to club and country has
never been more evident. He scored all four goals as Portugal beat Sweden in the World Cup play-offs, landed the
2013 Ballon d'Or and signed a record-breaking new five-year deal with Madrid. Messi came in second after inspiring Barcelona to the Spanish title and signing up for a
range of lucrative endorsements.
It was a mixed year for the Argentinian, however, who
appeared in a Spanish court in September to testify over alleged tax fraud relating to
commercial contracts and lost his grip on the Ballon d'Or after a year blighted by injuries.
Wayne Rooney makes the top four on the list following Manchester United's decision to
offer him the biggest contract in British football history, worth €365,000 a week.
Neymar's controversial transfer to Barcelona sees him rocket up the standings to sixth,
with his parents' €40m 'compensation' payment included Goal's figures due to its game-
The rest of the list is made up of global superstars, who have accrued huge wealth over
significant spells at the top of the professional game.
Samuel Eto'o is at number three, ahead of Rooney, thanks largely to the millions he
earned at Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala, with Kaka, Ronaldinho, Zlatan Ibrahimovic,
Gianluigi Buffon and Thierry Henry completing the top 10.