Lionel Messi ranks fourth when it comes to the list brought out by Forbes of the world's highest paid athlete in 2015. He created a record for hitting the most number of goals over a period of one year in 2012. He was named "Player of the Year' on four different occasions. As a citizen of Argentina, he plays as captain of the national football team of Argentina.
He made his first appearance as a professional for the team, Barcelona, at a tender age of 16. He went on to take the club to fresh zenith in the world of football with a series of wins with his ability to steer the ball with his left leg. He bagged the FIFA World Player of the Year Ballon d'Or award in 2009.
Messi went on to break quite a few records in 2012 when he scored the highest number of goals scored by Barcelona. By the time he crossed 2012, Messi had set up a record of 91 goals in playing national and international football . He went on to create several records and even led the Argentinean team into the final match of the 2014 World Cup.
With a salary of $21 million per annum, Messi stands out as one of the highest paid footballers. His popularity as a soccer player has earned him several endorsements from many companies like Adidas and Pepsi. His endorsements alone bring in about $22 million for him. His popularity made him the Goodwill Ambassador for the UNICEF. He has a girlfriend, Antonella Roccuzzo, and together, they have a son, Thiago.