Cristiano Ronaldo may be enduring a sticky patch on the field with Real Madrid, but things look to be going swimmingly off it.
The reigning world player of the year is now the most popular figure in the world on Facebook. The Portuguese superstar has surpassed singer (and wife of Barcelona’s Gerard Pique) Shakira to take the number one spot.
Ronaldo now has more than 107 million likes and as it stands is around 5,000 clear of the Hips Don’t Lie songstress.
TOP 10 ATHLETES ON FACEBOOK
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Real Madrid – Ronaldo’s own club – limp in at 11th with 83million likes, one place behind perennial rivals Barcelona.
No athlete in the world comes close to Ronaldo, with Lionel Messi the next most popular sportsman down in 13th place. His total of 78million falls well behind the Real Madrid marksman.
It’s not only on Facebook where Ronaldo dominates. He’s also the number one followed athlete on Twitter. His total of more than 34 million followers puts him over a million clear of his nearest competitor who is, surprisingly, one Ricardo Kaka.
Ronaldo may be dominating social media, but he and his team certainly aren’t dominating on the pitch. The ex-Manchester United winger was far from happy with his side’s latest defeat to Schalke in the Champions League last-16.
Despite progress to the quarter-finals on away goals, Ronaldo has vowed not to speak to the media. ‘I wont talk again until the end of the season,’ Ronaldo told reporters.
Cristiano Ronaldo is the richest footballer in the world, according to the 2015 Goal Rich List, an annual chart of the game’s wealthiest active players, Goal.com reports.
The Real Madrid star, 30, also topped the list in 2014 but has bolstered his position over the last 12 months to emerge €10 million ahead of second-placed Lionel Messi with an overall personal wealth of €210m.
Ronaldo has increased his wealth substantially, thanks largely to having collected bonuses for helping Real Madrid to the Champions League and Club World Cup crowns. He also received a sum for winning the 2014 Ballon d’Or.
Added to that, further earnings were reaped from commercial deals with companies such as Toyota, Herbalife and Samsung, while his long-term association with Nike remained a key money-spinner.
Barcelona’s Messi, who was just €2m short of Ronaldo’s wealth in 2014, continues to generate huge amounts off the field through both commercial tie-ins and property moves, which have seen him build up an extensive portfolio.
Industry experts worked with specialists across the globe to bring together the final chart for 2015, detailing a catalogue of investments by the world’s best-paid and financially-savvy players.
Neymar charted third in the Goal Rich List, with he and his family still benefitting from a huge chunk of the forward’s transfer from Santos in 2013. Paris Saint-Germain’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic came in fourth, with Manchester United and England striker Wayne Rooney the fifth and final player to register personal wealth of over €100m.
Former Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder David Beckham topped the list in 2013 before his retirement from the game.