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New deal makes Lionel Messi soccer's top earner

New deal makes Lionel Messi soccer's top earner
Lionel Messi, left, shakes hands with FC Barcelona President Josep Maria Bartomeu after extending his contract. (Miguel Ruiz / EPA)

Lionel Messi, soccer's four-time world player of the year, signed a revised contract with Barcelona on Monday that will make him the sport's best-paid player.

The new deal will reportedly pay him a base salary of $27.4 million a season. Spanish media reports say Messi will also get nearly $7 million a year on bonuses. In addition, the 26-year-old Argentine will regain control of his image rights, which could bring in millions more.

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Based on wages and endorsement, Forbes estimated Messi was among the 10 best-paid athletes  in the world last year.

Before Messi signed his new contract, Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo, the reigning player of the year, was soccer's best-paid player, getting $25 million in base salary from Real Madrid.

Messi's deal runs through the 2017-18 season. Since Messi debuted with the Spanish club in 2004-05, Barcelona has won 21 titles, including six league championships and three Champions League crowns.

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