The 25 most popular athletes of 2017

Denis Doyle/Getty

ESPN released its ranking of the most popular athletes in the world back in May, and once again, Cristiano Ronaldo was at the top of the list.

The list was compiled by Ben Alamar, ESPN’s director of analytics. He devised a formula that weighs factors like endorsements, social media following, and internet search popularity to sift through thousands of athletes, and the result was a rundown of the biggest international superstars in sports.

Below, take a look at the top 25 best-known athletes. The list includes six tennis players, five soccer players, four basketball players, four golfers, two fighters, two cricket players, a quarterback, and a track star.


25. Conor McGregor

David Becker/Getty

Sport: MMA/Boxing

Country: Ireland

Salary: $US70 million (estimate)

Endorsements: $US4 million

Facebook likes:
7.6 million

Twitter followers:
6.8 m
illion

Instagram followers:
21.7 million


24. Dwyane Wade

Sport: Basketball

Country: USA

Salary: $US2.3 million

Endorsements: $US13 million

Facebook likes:
11.
2 million

Twitter followers:
7.5 million

Instagram followers:
10.2 million


23. Maria Sharapova

Lintao Zhang/Getty

Sport: Tennis

Country: Russia

Salary: $US554,990

Endorsements: $US15 million

Facebook likes:
15.3 million

Twitter followers:
8.1 million

Instagram followers:
2.9 million


22. Gareth Bale

Stu Forster/Getty

Sport: Soccer

Country: Wales

Salary: $US25.5 million

Endorsements: $US11 million

Facebook likes:
28.9 million

Twitter followers:
15.9 million

Instagram followers:
32.1 million


21. Tom Brady

Mike Ehrmann/Getty

Sport: Football

Country: USA

Salary: $US14 million

Endorsements: $US8 million

Facebook likes:
4.4 million

Twitter followers: N/A

Instagram followers:
3
.1 million


20. Kei Nishikori

Minas Panagiotakis/Getty

Sport: Tennis

Country: Japan

Salary: $US1.5 million

Endorsements: $US30 million

Facebook likes:
687,000

Twitter followers:
892,000

Instagram followers:
309,000


19. Serena Williams

Scott Barbour/Getty

Sport: Tennis

Country: USA

Salary: $US2.7 million

Endorsements: $US20 million

Facebook likes:
5.3 million

Twitter followers:
10.2 million

Instagram followers:
7.2 million


18. Kak√°

Marco Luzzani/Getty

Sport: Soccer

Country: Brazil

Salary: $US7.2 million

Endorsements: $US5.5 million

Facebook likes:
31.5 million

Twitter followers:
29.6 million

Instagram followers:
12.6 million


17. Jordan Spieth

Gregory Shamus/Getty

Sport: Golf

Country: USA

Salary: $US12.4 million

Endorsements: $US32 million

Facebook likes:
453,o00

Twitter followers:
1.9 million

Instagram followers:
1.3 million


16. Ronda Rousey

Christian Petersen/Getty

Sport: MMA

Country: USA

Salary: $US8 million

Endorsements: $US8 million

Facebook likes:
11.3 million

Twitter followers:
3.4 million

Instagram followers:
9.7 million


15. MS Dhoni

Gareth Copley/Getty

Sport: Cricket

Country: India

Salary: $US3.5 million

Endorsements: $US16 million

Facebook likes:
20.6 million

Twitter followers:
6.8 million

Instagram followers:
7.4 million


14. Rory McIlroy

Ross Kinnaird/Getty

Sport: Golf

Country: Northern Ireland

Salary: $US2.4 million

Endorsements: $US35 million

Facebook likes:
1.2 million

Twitter followers:
3.2 million

Instagram followers:
1.4 million


13. Virat Kohli

Charlie Crowhurst/Getty

Sport: Cricket

Country: India

Salary: $US3.1 million

Endorsements: $US17.4 million

Facebook likes:
36.7 million

Twitter followers:
21.7 million

Instagram followers:
18 million


12. Novak Djokovic

Shaun Botterill/Getty

Sport: Tennis

Country: Serbia

Salary: $US2.1 million

Endorsements: $US34 million

Facebook likes:
7.2 million

Twitter followers:
8.1 million

Instagram followers:
3.6 million


11. Stephen Curry

Matthew Stockman/Getty

Sport: Basketball

Country: USA

Salary: $US34.7 million

Endorsements: $US35 million

Facebook likes:
8 million

Twitter followers:
11.4 million

Instagram followers:
18.4 million


10. Tiger Woods

Mike Ehrmann/Getty

Sport: Golf

Country: USA

Salary: $US122,500

Endorsements: $US45 million

Facebook likes:
3.1 million

Twitter followers:
6.3 million

Instagram followers:
972,000


9. Rafael Nadal

Julian Finney/Getty

Sport: Tennis

Country: Spain

Salary: $US15.9 million

Endorsements: $US32 million

Facebook likes:
14.7 million

Twitter followers:
15.1 million

Instagram followers:
4.1 million


8. Kevin Durant

Gregory Shamus/Getty

Sport: Basketball

Country: USA

Salary: $US25 million

Endorsements: $US36 million

Facebook likes:
10.5 million

Twitter followers:
17.4 million

Instagram followers:
9.1 million


7. Usain Bolt

Shaun Botterill/Getty

Sport: Track

Country: Jamaica

Salary: N/A

Endorsements: $US30 million

Facebook likes:
19.3 million

Twitter followers:
5 million

Instagram followers:
7.9 million


6. Neymar

Catherine Ivill/Getty

Sport: Soccer

Country: Brazil

Salary: $US42.8 million

Endorsements: $US23 million

Facebook likes:
60.8 million

Twitter followers:
36.3 million

Instagram followers:
85.7 million


5. Phil Mickelson

Andrew Redington/Getty

Sport: Golf

Country: USA

Salary: $US2.1 million

Endorsements: $US50 million

Facebook likes: N/A

Twitter followers: N/A

Instagram followers: N/A


4. Roger Federer

Julian Finney/Getty

Sport: Tennis

Country: Switzerland

Salary: $US13.1 million

Endorsements: $US60 million

Facebook likes:
14.9 million

Twitter followers:
10.8 million

Instagram followers:
4.1 million


3. Lionel Messi

Fotopress/Getty

Sport: Soccer

Country: Argentina

Salary: $US59.2 million

Endorsements: $US28 million

Facebook likes:
89.4 million

Twitter followers: N/A

Instagram followers:
84.9 million


2. LeBron James

Jonathan Daniel/Getty

Sport: Basketball

Country: USA

Salary: $US33.3 million

Endorsements: $US55 million

Facebook likes:
23.2 million

Twitter followers:
40 million

Instagram followers:
34.3 million


1. Cristiano Ronaldo

Denis Doyle/Getty

Sport: Soccer

Country: Portugal

Salary: $US60 million

Endorsements: $US32 million

Facebook likes:
122.6 million

Twitter followers:
66.7 million

Instagram followers:
117 million

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