How much does Cristiano Ronaldo earn and what is the football legend’s net worth?

FT Desk
  • FT Desk
  • Updated: October 20, 2021, 16:28 CEST
  • 10 min read
Cristiano Ronaldo, Juventus, 2020-21 season

Love him or hate him, Cristiano Ronaldo has changed the game and become the richest ever footballer – past or present – in the process.

Ronaldo has racked up an extraordinary net worth as part of a career that has seen him represent Sporting CP, Manchester United, Real Madrid and Juventus.

He has dominated the sport along with Lionel Messi for over a decade and is a five-time winner of the prestigious Ballon d’Or.

Ronaldo has won seven league titles in his career across three different countries, in addition to claiming an incredible five Champions League winners’ medals.

The Manchester United forward plays international football for Portugal, having made his debut back in 2003.

Ronaldo holds the country’s all-time records for caps and goals. He helped them to Euro 2016 glory in one of the crowning moments of his career. He also is the highest scorer in the history of international football, breaking Ali Daei's record in September 2021.

But Ronaldo has also achieved some astonishing feats off the pitch, earning eye-watering amounts of salary and commercial income.

Here, we look through his key financial numbers.

What is Ronaldo’s net worth?

Ronaldo has an estimated net worth of $500 million as of October 2021. In other key currencies that is roughly €433m and £367m.

His net worth is around $100m higher than that of his great rival Messi, and more than double another of football’s biggest commercial stars, Neymar.

How much does Ronaldo earn?

While he is the world’s richest footballer past or present, Ronaldo actually earned slightly less than Messi in 2020, according to Forbes.

Still, Ronaldo earned a salary that is not to be sniffed at, earning a cool $117m before taxes over the course of the calendar year, just $9m below the total earnings of Messi.

His still impressive contract at Juventus was not paying a salary ($70m) that competed with the deal Messi had at Barcelona last year or even that of PSG star Neymar.

But where Ronaldo overpowers his rivals is other income sources like commercial earnings and endorsement fees.

In addition to his fine performances on the pitch, Ronaldo is not afraid to show off his good looks and toned physique.

Marketing experts say that has helped him to cultivate a huge social media following, making him a commercial heavyweight pursued by the world’s biggest brands.

His earnings were around $47m in that category last year, which was more than Messi and Neymar.

Behind the big three there is an enormous gap until the next highest-earning footballers last year, Kylian Mbappe ($42m) and Mohamed Salah ($37m).

Ronaldo signed a four-year contract with Juventus when he joined them which would have run until 2022 had he not joined United after a summer of transfer speculation that followed the 2020/21 season.

The deal with Juve was a slight reduction on his Real Madrid salary but gave him the security that he will still be paid huge wages until beyond his 37th birthday.

Ronaldo was not the only party to benefit from the deal though, with Juve seeing a huge positive commercial impact from his arrival.

They sold over half a million jerseys with his name on the back within 24 hours of their release ahead of his first season in Italy.

In 2020, Ronaldo became the first footballer ever to reach the $1 billion earnings mark, and was subsequently joined by Messi in achieving that status.

Ronaldo made an emotional return to United after being linked with Man City

Ronaldo made an emotional return to United after being linked with Man City

Tiger Woods and Floyd Mayweather were the only other sporting figures to reach that mark before Ronaldo while still being active in their respective sports.

The Man Utd star was therefore the first to do it in a team sport.

When you look at the salary and endorsement income Ronaldo receives and break it down into shorter timeframes, it becomes hard to comprehend for the regular fan.

The $117m he earned last year means Ronaldo has a monthly pay packet of around $9.75m and a weekly wage of $2.25m.

Each day sees Ronaldo earn around $320,000. Going even further, Portugal star Ronaldo has an hourly rate of $13,000. That means he earns $215 every minute and around $3.60 per second.

How much does Cristiano Ronaldo earn and what is the football legend’s net worth?

Another boost to Ronaldo's net worth then came with his move to United at the end of August.

The forward signed a two-year deal with an option of a further year, guaranteeing him huge wages and a place at one of Europe's most marketable clubs until at least 2023, when he will be 38 and the World Cup in Qatar will have already taken place, and potentially longer if United take up the option.

Ronaldo reportedly earns £25m net per year as a result of his new deal with United, with his salary being worth around £480,000-a-week.

It was recently reported that Ronaldo alone costs more in wages than the total salaries at Premier League squads Norwich, Leeds and Brentford.

Who sponsors Ronaldo?

The most prominent sponsor for Ronaldo is Nike, who reportedly pay him more than $20m every year.

Ronaldo signed a lifetime deal with Nike in 2016 and was only the third athlete to do so.

He followed in the footsteps of basketball giants Michael Jordan and LeBron James in signing such a deal.

Ronaldo being tied to Nike is key, with Messi representing rivals Adidas and Neymar having made the switch to Puma.

At present, Ronaldo earns around $45m per year in commercial fees from a host of brands.

As well as Nike, he has represented Altice, Herbalife, DAZN, MTG, Clear shampoo, Abbott and Unilever over recent years.

What businesses does Ronaldo have?

Ronaldo is building a hotel empire through his Pestana CR7 Group.

Establishments are already set up in Funchal and Lisbon, with others planned in glamorous locations around the world.

He also works on a CR7 clubs business with Crunch Fitness and has posted a host of online workouts to promote the deal.

Ronaldo has agreed to have his name attached to a social media influencing degree offered by eCampus, an Italian online university.

A huge income driver that is likely to continue growing in the future is his own CR7 brand.

Per Forbes, around a quarter of his endorsement income each year is estimated to come from his own company.

The trademark – a mix of his initials and jersey number— started off promoting branded underwear back in 2013.

It has since expanded to offer larger product ranges including shoes, perfumes and clothing.

As well as raking it in representing other companies and his own projects, Ronaldo is also extremely generous with his time for charity projects.

He won an award in 2015, being named the most charitable sports star in the world that year.

He has campaigned on issues such as childhood hunger, obesity and biodiversity.

The Portugal attacker has promoted and financially supported charities like UNICEF, World Vision and Save the Children.

Per Goal, he asked his agent Jorge Mendes to donate his 2016 Champions League win bonus worth €600,000 to a non-governmental organisation.

Ronaldo has donated to a cancer centre in Portugal that treated his mother, as well as helping to fund the healthcare of a child fan who required brain surgery.

How much does Cristiano Ronaldo earn and what is the football legend’s net worth?

What are his cars and assets?

Ronaldo lived in a huge estate in Alderley Edge when he played for Man Utd, before buying a mansion for almost €7m in the La Finca neighbourhood when he played for Real Madrid.

After signing for Juventus he snapped up two adjoining villas in Turin that contain a private gym and a swimming pool.

The private area is guarded by security with separate entrance gates and huge grounds.

Ronaldo has already been involved in some memorable moments since his Man Utd return

Ronaldo has already been involved in some memorable moments since his Man Utd return

He also owns a holiday property in Costa del Sol, while his main home in Madeira is worth almost $10m and he has also bought up much of the land close to his home.

Ronaldo is also an avid collector of classic cars and The Sun have reported he has a garage worth €22m.

His Bugatti Centodieci is one of only 10 in the world and valued at almost $12m.

Also in the collection is a Bugatti Chiron, a Bugatti Veyron, a Mercedes G-Class Brabus, a lamborghini Aventador and a Ferrari F12.

Ronaldo has also bought other major items with his huge salary. He purchased a Gulfstream G200 twin-engine private jet in 2015 for over $27m. He regularly uses it for trips around Europe.

In addition, he purchased a superyacht to increase his portfolio of assets. It contains five luxury cabins and six bathrooms, along with modern lounge, kitchen and dining areas.

Since coming back to Old Trafford, Ronaldo eventually settled on a mansion in Cheshire, after moving out of the first luxury property he had planned to live in due to concerns over its suitability.

How many followers does Ronaldo have on social media?

Ronaldo has huge social media accounts, which have grown even further in 2021 since his return to United. He now has just short of 95 million followers on Twitter.

He has an enormous 353m people tracking his movements on Instagram, while on Facebook he has reached the 150m followers milestone.

Forbes have rated Ronaldo as the most followed athlete on social media. He has engagement figures that Hookit report continue to set records among sportspeople, allowing him to cash in to supplement his regular salary and income sources, boosting his net worth.