Top 5 Highest Paid Athletes in the World (2008)
Everything comes at a huge price – and so does talent! Yes, some of the richest people in the world are none other than our ever-exalted sportsmen. A recent survey shows that men athletes’ earnings exceeded those of female athletes in the world by more than 4 to 1 last year (2007).
Top 5 Highest-Paid Athletes in the World
Listed below are names of the top-5 highest-paid athletes in the world:
- Tiger Woods: Golf is his territory, and no one so far has been able to take his place. With a whopping $115 million in earnings in just one year, this sensational golfer has out-earned top tennis female athlete Maria Sharapova, who earned $26 million in the same year. This put him at the top of the list for highest-paid athletes in the world. 2008-09 was dismal without him, as Woods missed the entire season due to a knee surgery. The golf star has still managed to bag a few credits to his name, such as a ninth PGA Player of the Year, a seventh Vardon Trophy and a third-time winner of the US Open Championship.
- David Beckham: Despite being sidelined by injuries in his first season with the Los Angeles Galaxy, David Beckham, the prominent midfielder of soccer games, has managed to bag the No.2 position in the arena of highest-paid athletes of the world. David Robert Joseph Beckham earned more than every athlete in the world, with the exception of the evergreen Tiger Woods. Beckham raked in $50 million to his name in one year. This soccer star has become a celebrity and an acclaimed heartthrob for people across the globe. He is especially admired in the United States. Apart from bagging much media attention for his game, his thrills and good looks have earned him endorsement gigs for Adidas, Giorgio Armani, Pepsi, Motorola and Sharpie.
- Michael Jordan and Phil Mickelson: No.3 is shared by the basketball legend Michael Jordan and golf star Phil Mickelson. Each of them bagged $45 million in 2008. No more a net scraper, Jordan draws handsome checks for heading the operations of the Charlotte Bobcats professional basketball team (Charlotte, North Carolina). Nothing beats the Jordan brand associated with Nike, which meets a sales target of about $800 million each year. This really puts Jordan’s earnings in the multi-million dollar bracket. Mickelson also managed a great deal of income from endorsement deals. He is backed by eminent sponsors such as Ford, Bearing Point, Exxon Mobile and Callaway.
- Kimi Raikkonen: Formula One Finnish racer Kimi Raikkonen was the fifth-highest paid athlete in 2008. He took home an income worth $44 million dollar last year. Kimi, hailed as “Iceman” also grabbed the top position for being the highest-paid racer in the world. To add to the grace and fame, Raikkonen also won the Formula One World Drivers’ Championship.
Reports suggest that male athletes took home $483 million in 2008. This can be compared with women athletes, who managed to grab just a mere $118 million from June 2007 to June 2008.