David Beckham remains the highest-earning football player in the world, for the third year running, according to Forbes magazine. The 35-year-old earned $40m (£26m) in 2009, with about 80% of that coming from sponsors such as Adidas, Giorgio Armani and Motorola.
Cristiano Ronaldo is second on the Forbes list, earning $30m (£19.5m) a year. The Portugal midfielder’s major sponsors include Nike, Coca-Cola and, like Beckham, Giorgio Armani. He signed a six-year contract with real Madrid that pays an estimated $15.5m in the first year, then increases by 25%.
3rd to 10th: Kaká, Ronaldinho, Thierry Henry, Lionel Messi, Frank Lampard, John Terry, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Steven Gerrard.