Cristiano Ronaldo becomes football’s first billionaire

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Soccer Football - World Cup - Group B - Portugal vs Morocco - Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow, Russia - June 20, 2018 Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring their first goal REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

Portuguese striker Cristiano Ronaldo has become the first billionaire footballer.

According to Forbes, the 35-year-old has not only reached $1billion in earnings, he has earned $105million (£82.6m) before taxes and fees over the past year.

This edges him over rival striker Lionel Messi.

Ronaldo has earned a grand total of $605m (£475m) from his various pay packets since 2005

He is the first star to hit the $1bn mark in a team sport, and has made an eye-watering $650m (£511m) on the field alone during his 17 years as a professional player. 

In fact, he is even expected to reach $765m (£602m) for his career salary at the end of his current Juventus deal, which expires in June 2022.

The five-times Champions League winner has been described as “one of the greatest players of all time, in the world’s most popular sport, in an era when football has never been so rich.”