Messi makes so much money off the pitch he earns more than NBA star LeBron James

One of sports' oldest discussions is 'who is the greatest of all time?' In football, we have Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo, and Basketball sees LeBron James and Michael Jordan go head-to-head.

However, in monetary terms both sports are not miles apart – as Messi and James prove. But Messi's image is so lucrative he earns more off the field than James does on the court.

According to Forbes, Messi earns $55million (£45million) away from the game, while James only earns $41million (£34million) on the court. James is currently playing for the Los Angeles Lakers – who have him on the most lucrative contract in the NBA.

The majority of Messi's income comes from his PSG contract, where he moved last summer.

Forbes also reports that Messi earns $75million (£62million) on the pitch, making him football's highest earner. However, that title could be under threat with Kylian Mbappe's PSG deal up in the summer, and the Frenchman is expected to sign a mega-money deal with Real Madrid.

It's not all bad news for James, and the American earns more than Messi off the field with a staggering $80million (£65million).

Do you think Mbappe can overtake Messi in earnings next year? Let us know in the comments section

Messi has struggled at PSG since his move from Barcelona last summer.

The Argentine superstar has four goals in 24 Ligue 1 outings for the Parisian outfit. However, he has looked more himself in Europe, with five goals in seven Champions League appearances.

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