Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo? Who earns more after 2022 FIFA World Cup winner's move to Inter Miami
Lionel Messi rejected a move to Cristiano Ronaldo's Saudi Pro League and joined Inter Miami.
Lionel Messi stunned football fans with a shock move to MLS side Inter Miami during the ongoing summer transfer window. The 2022 FIFA World Cup winner departed PSG as a free agent, but was expected to remain in Europe with FC Barcelona his favoured destination. But the move fell through due to the La Liga club's financial condition. The attacker was also linked to Al Hilal and the Saudi Pro League club reportedly offered him a massive 344 million pounds deal, but he rejected them for a 43 million pounds salary at Inter Miami.
Other than his salary, Messi will be earning money from other avenues too, which contributed to his move to the MLS. MLS and Apple have reportedly offered Messi a share of the profits generated in the MLS Pass streaming service on Apple TV through new subscribers. Apple TV has also announced a four-episode documentary series on Messi, that will showcase his FIFA World Cup run.
Meanwhile, Adidas (Messi's long-term sponsor) are a major sponsor for MLS and they reportedly offered Messi a share of the profits earned in MLS merchandise sales, created from his arrival. He will also receive more than one-third of Inter Miami, similar to David Beckham's groundbreaking transfer to LA Galaxy during his playing days.
Meanwhile, Cristiano Ronaldo, who joined Al Nassr after the 2022 FIFA World Cup in the winter transfer window, is currently being paid 173 million pounds per season. Out of his total salary, 62 million pounds is for playing football and the remaining 111 million pounds is for commercial deals and image rights. The non-football fee will also see the former Manchester United star serve as ambassador for Saudi Arabia's bid to host the 2030 World Cup.
Messi announced his arrival in style, scoring a last-minute free-kick winner in his side's Leagues Cup opener vs Cruz Azul. He came in as a second-half substitute and helped seal a 2-1 win. Then, he followed it up with a brace and assist in his side's next Leagues Cup match against Atalanta United, which they won 4-0. In Inter Miami's third Leagues Cup fixture, he once again scored a brace in a 3-1 victory against Orlando City.
Since joining Al Nassr, Ronaldo scored 14 goals in 16 Saudi Pro League matches, and bagged two assists. Before his arrival, Al Nassr were on top of the league club, but eventually saw Al Ittihad occupy pole position and win the league title.