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Biggest soccer kick-off deals ever, from Puma’s record-breaking deal with Neymar to Ronaldo’s contract with Nike

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Neymar signs world record Puma shoe contract after helping Paris Saint-Germain reach their first Champions League final.

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That kept his rivals awake as he signed a world-record £23m-a-year contract.

But who makes a lot of money with sponsored boots?

Let SunSport come up with the biggest footwear deals in the game and what these stars earn each year.

1. NEYMAR, £23 million

The mysterious Brazilian striker dropped out of Nike to join rival Puma and was rewarded with the largest individual sports sponsorship deal in history.

It’s not known how long the deal will last, but his previous deal with Nike was for 11 years and was worth half of his new Puma contract.

Neymar signed the biggest warm-up deal in history last year

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Neymar signed the biggest warm-up deal in history last yearCredit: Reuters

Neymar then posted on social media: “I grew up watching videos of great football legends like Pele, Cruyff, Eusebio and Maradona, who used to play at Puma.

“For these reasons, from today on, I have the honor to merge with the brand that has made football’s greatest legends what they are.”

2. MESSI, £18 million

Second soccer player to become a billionaire (the first is Cristiano Ronaldo), Messi ranks second for the best kick-off deals of all time.

In 2017, the legend of Barcelona who shocked the world with move to PSG, signed an extension of his boot contract with Adidas – giving him a lifetime deal with the company.

He is the first soccer player to release a sub-brand of Adidas shoes – Adidas Messi.

The years go by, and when Messi finally hangs up his boots, it could be as lucrative as the Air Jordan brand that Nike created for Michael Jordan.

Lionel Messi has a sub-brand of the shoe available through Adidas

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Lionel Messi has a sub-brand of the shoe available through AdidasCredit: Facebook

3. RONALDO, £15 million

As Nike Award Assets, Ronaldo is their highest earner.

However, Neymar’s contract is currently only 8 million pounds.

But Ronaldo can take comfort as his deal will pay out more than Neymar – believed to be worth £780m over his lifetime.

Manchester United’s CR7 is just the third athlete to sign a lifetime contract with Nike, along with Michael Jordan and LeBron James.

Man Utd's Cristiano Ronaldo has a lifetime contract with Nike

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Man Utd’s Cristiano Ronaldo has a lifetime contract with NikeCredits: Rex Features

4. MBAPPE, £14 million

Nike poster boy, in 2019, Kylian Mbappe faced a bidding war between his current sponsors and Adidas.

He has signed a 10-year deal worth around £140m, which is said to be in effect as long as he plays in a top league.

The PSG superstar is said to be joining Nike, following in the footsteps of his idol Ronaldo.

He is someone who can challenge Neymar for years to come at just 23 years old.

Kylian Mbappe has the potential to become the biggest earner in football in the coming years

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Kylian Mbappe has the potential to become the biggest earner in football in the coming yearsCredit: Splash News

5. BALOTELLI, £5 million

In 2014, the Italian golden boy Mario Balotelli played at his peak against AC Milan.

As a key member of the Italian national team, he is the country’s most glorious hope.

So when his contract with Nike expired, Puma signed a 10-year deal worth around £5m a year.

Now at a crossroads in his career after joining Adana Demirspor in Turkey, the 31-year-old is no longer in the market as he once was.

Mario Balotelli receives £5m a year from Puma for their shoes

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Mario Balotelli receives £5m a year from Puma for their shoesCredit: EPA

6. SELL, £4 million

Welsh Wizard, who spent last season on loan at Spurs, earning around £18 million a year from Real Madrid.

And he has exclusive sponsorship deals with EA Sports, Lucozade and Adidas, just to name a few.

Contracts with German sports producers are his most lucrative, however, Gareth Bale’s income is around £4m a year.

It’s certainly enough to keep Bale in golf clubs.

Bale still under contract to wear Adidas shoes

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Bale still under contract to wear Adidas shoesCredit: PA: Press Association

7. GRIEZMANN, £3.5 million

In 2015, Antoine Griezmann extended his kick-off contract with Puma to £3.5 million per year.

By that time he had already become a global superstar – leaving Atletico Madrid for Barcelona in a deal worth around £108m – although he is now back in the Spanish capital.

In 2019, to celebrate Griezmann’s 10th anniversary with Puma, they released his special shoe – limited edition Future 4.1 NETFIT Grizi priced at £229.

He was one of Puma’s top players until Neymar showed up.

Antoine Griezmann is one of Puma's headline players

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Antoine Griezmann is one of Puma’s headline playersCredit: Reuters

8. POGBA, £3 million

The Manchester United midfielder is well worth the £3m-a-year fee Adidas pays him.

Not only does he appear in most of the TV commercials the brand puts on our screens, he also appears on every poster promoting the latest Predator shoes.

His 10-year contract worth around £30m expires in 2024.

Pogba is another person Nike are desperate to add to their roster.

Paul Pogba is a poster boy for Adidas

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Paul Pogba is a poster boy for Adidas

9. VERRATTI, £2.5 million

The PSG midfielder’s contract with Puma expired in 2017, when Marco Verratti wore black Puma evoTOUCH boots in training.

He ended up signing a big deal with Nike – attaching a pair of Hypervenom Phantom III.

It is not known how long the agreement will last.

However, £2.5 million is not worth snubbing.

Puma paid Marco Verratti £2.5m to wear their shoes with teammate Neymar

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Puma paid Marco Verratti £2.5m to wear their shoes with teammate NeymarCredit: Icon Sport

10. SALAH, £2.5 million

The Liverpool forward has become one of the most buy-able faces in the game, particularly in Africa and the Middle East.

He’s sponsored by Adidas, along with lucrative contracts with the likes of Pepsi and Vodafone in Egypt.

It saw Mo Salah put on X18 soccer cleats and get paid handsomely for it.

That endorsement generates £2.5 million a year.

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Messi talks about the prospect of playing with Kylian Mbappe and Neymar at PSG

https://www.thesun.ie/sport/football/5928859/biggest-football-boot-deals-neymar-ronaldo-messi/ Biggest soccer kick-off deals ever, from Puma’s record-breaking deal with Neymar to Ronaldo’s contract with Nike

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