Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Neymar the money-making machine! Brazil star beats Bolt, Messi and McIlroy in list of world's most marketable athletes

Brazilian star Neymar is the most marketable sportsperson in the world. The Santos striker has been placed ahead of the likes of Lionel Messi, Usain Bolt and Lewis Hamilton at the top of SportsPro magazine's top 50 most marketable athletes.

But why is a 21-year-old who has never played club football outside of Brazil or featured in a major international tournament considered more valuable than some of the greatest athletes across the sporting world?
Money man: Brazil and Santos star Neymar has been ranked the world's most marketable athlete again
Superstar: Barcelona and Argentina favourite Lionel Messi is just behind Neymar at No 2

David Cushnan, SportsPro editor-in-chief, explains that there are three key reasons why Neymar, who also topped the list last year, earned his position.

'Essentially the crux of it is we are trying to predict marketing value over the next three years. We're trying to forecast who is going to be worth investing from a sponsorship point of view but also who perhaps offers real value for money.
'Our feeling is that Neymar has the World Cup coming up next year, where he's going to be the star at home, he's a megastar in Brazil.
'He still has this big move to come, probably to Barcelona, that will launch him to whole new level of fame. And there is no doubt that Messi is the more talented player but you can make the argument he is not particularly charismatic off the pitch, not animated or confident in front of the camera.
Swoosh: Rory McIlroy recently signed a mega-money deal with American giants Nike
Rookie sensation: Robert Griffin III had a superb debut season with the Washington Redskins
'You can't ignore him but when it comes to marketing our conclusion was Neymar. From a marketability and brand appeal point of view, if you're picking someone for three years he's the guy.'

A team of five sport-business experts at SportsPro have the final decision on the list but use sources around the globe from marketing and advertising agencies and federations across different sports.

There are more sportswomen in the annual list for the first time since its inception in 2008, with American tennis player Sloane Stephens the highest-ranked woman at No 9.
Cushnan believes the Olympics has had an impact on the number of women on the list, saying: 'It is certainly true to say there is a lot more potential in women's sports. In Britain the Olympics had an effect on that.
Top five: Jamaican sprint king Usain Bolt lit up the London Olympic Games last summer
Serb and volley: World No 1 tennis player Novak Djokovic is at No 6 in the list
Girl power: American tennis star Sloane Stephens is the only female in the top 10
Hoop dreams: Blake Griffin (No 32) from the Los Angeles Clippers completes the top 10
'It underlines they're not only incredible athletes but are incredible at endorsing a brand and going beyond the sport. They are comfortable promoting sport as well as their brand or someone else's brand. They're comfortable in front of the camera.'

Cushnan added that social media is also playing a huge factor in how marketable athletes are.

'Vincent Kompany. He is high up just because of the way he's very sensible but also keeps his own personality on Twitter,' Cushnan said.

'He's refreshing. Talks about not just football but other issues.'

Net gain: Caroline Wozniacki is one of the world's most marketable females
Tennis star Maria Sharapova (top) and ski racer Lindsey Vonn (bottom)
Coming up on the rails: Jockey Katie Walsh sneaks on to the list at No 50

Sportspro take the following into account when compiling the list: Value for money, age, home market, charisma, willingness to be marketed and crossover appeal.

1 Neymar – football, Brazil
2 Lionel Messi, football, Argentina
3 Rory McIlroy, golf, UK

4 Robert Griffin III, American football, USA

5 Usain Bolt, athletics, Jamaica

6 Novak Djokovic, tennis, Serbia

7 Lewis Hamilton, Formula One, UK

8 Cristiano Ronaldo, football, Portugal

9 Sloane Stephens, tennis, USA

10 Blake Griffin, basketball, USA

11 Tiger Woods, golf, USA
12 Sebastian Vettel, Formula One, Germany

13 Virat Kohli, cricket, India

14 LeBron James, basketball, USA

15 Victoria Azarenka, tennis, Belarus

16 Maria Sharapova, tennis, Russia

17 Alan Oliveira, Paralympic sprinter, Brazil

18 Andy Murray, tennis, UK

19 Alex Ovechkin, ice hockey, Russia

20 Missy Franklin, swimming, USA

21 Vincent Kompany, football, Belgium

22 Carmelo Anthony, basketball, USA

23 Caroline Wozniacki, tennis, Denmark

24 Sergio Perez, Formula One, Mexico

25 Rafael Nadal, tennis, Spain

26 Lindsey Vonn, skiing, USA
27 Alex Morgan, football, USA

28 Mike Trout, baseball, USA

29 Jack Wilshere, football, UK

30 Yani Tseng, golf, Taiwan

31 Manny Pacquiao, boxing, Philippines

32 Saul Alvarez, boxing, Mexico

33 Lucas Moura, football, Brazil

34 Bubba Watson, golf, USA

35 Shaun White, snow/skateboarding, USA

36 Ellyse Perry, cricket/football, Australia

37 James Harden, basketball, USA

38 Shinji Kagawa, football, Japan

39 Seth Jones, ice hockey, USA
40 Laura Robson, tennis, UK

41 David Rudisha, long-distance runner, Kenya

42 Mark Cavendish, cycling, UK

43 Stacy Lewis, golf, USA

44 Kim Yu-Na, figure skating, South Korea

45 Danica Patrick, Nascar, USA

46 Anderson Silva, MMA, Brazil

47 Dale Earnhardt Jnr, Nascar, USA

48 Gareth Bale, football, UK

49 Robert Kubica, Formula One, Poland

50 Katie Walsh, jockey, Rep of Ire

I think i get the logic, to make this list u have to be young and doing things. you literally have to be the the Whiz Kid of your sport.


  1. Shiii.. messi shud stl be ontop tho.. btw Ronaldo aiint that old

  2. Omo oko ati iyawo on the list.. mclroy n wozniacki

  3. If all dis ones r whiz kid wat abt Ryan Giggs?.. Fatai rolling dollar?