Last year, David Beckham made bigger bucks stripping to his skivvies than he did winning on the pitch. Lucrative endorsement deals, like his infamous underwear ad for H&M, made up nearly 90 percent of his 2012 haul. But good play still means good pay. Barcelona’s Lionel Messi, four-time world player of the year, recently signed soccer’s richest contract. His salary, coupled with a coveted Adidas deal, could soon make him the top scorer off the field, too.
(This article is excerpted from the latest Forbes India 31 May, 2013 issue which is now available at news stands and book stores. You can buy our tablet version from Magzter.com)