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Floyd Mayweather becomes highest-paid athlete with $275m a night

His nickname is “Money” so it comes as no surprise that Floyd Mayweather has topped the Forbes annual list of the world’s 100 highest-paid athletes.

The retired American boxer has taken top spot on the Forbes sports rich list for the fourth time in seven years.

Footballers Lionel Messi of Barcelona and Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo came second and third respectively.

Mayweather earned $275m from his fight against UFC star Conor McGregor in August and supplemented his annual income with $10m in endorsements, Forbes reports.

Second-placed Messi made $111m thanks to his $84m in salary and winnings and endorsements worth $27m.

His rival Ronaldo, who was top of the list the two previous years, drops to third with $108m. The Real Madrid star earned $61m in salary and winnings and made $47m in endorsements.

Mixed-martial arts and UFC star McGregor is fourth on the list and is joined in the top 10 by Brazil footballer Neymar, basketball players LeBron James and Steph Curry, tennis ace Roger Federer and NFL quarterbacks Matt Ryan and Matthew Stafford.

Forbes’s sporting rich list is created after calculating an athlete’s earnings from prize money, salaries and bonuses in the year to June 1, 2018.

The Forbes data reveals that the 100 highest-paid athletes earned a collective $3.8bn during the past 12 months – that’s a 23 per cent increase from the previous year.

In the top 100 list, the NFL had 18 athletes, 14 were baseball players and nine were footballers. Five golfers, four boxers and four tennis players also made the list.

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