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ESPN announce top 20 most famous male athletes of 2019, including Lionel Messi, Paul Pogba, Mesut Ozil and Cristiano Ronaldo

ESPN have announced the top 20 most famous male athletes of 2019.

The sports television outlet have come up with a formula that combines endorsements with social media following and the amount of internet searches on the athletes.

Manchester United midfielder is on ESPN’s list

The list is based on three factors; 1) Endorsement dollars – sources range from ESPN and Forbes contributes, 2) Search score – measuring how often a name is searched on Google and taking a weighted average of an athlete’s Google Trends peak score and 3) Social media followers – using the number from their most popular account.

talkSPORT.com lists the sportsmen who made ESPN’S top 20 most famous athletes of 2019.

20. Novak Djokovic

Endorsements: $22million

Search score: 21

Social media following: 8.5million

Novak Djokovic is the world’s No.1 male tennis player

Djokovic is regarded as one of the best tennis players of all time. He is currently the world’s No.1 men’s singles tennis player. The Serb has won 15 Grand Slam titles.

19. Mesut Ozil

Endorsements: $6.5million

Search score: 15

Social media following: 30.9million

Mesut Ozil has struggled for form under Arsenal boss Unai Emery this season

Ozil became Arsenal’s most expensive signing after joining in a £42.4million deal from Real Madrid in 2013. Now, he is Arsenal’s third-most expensive player in history, behind Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. He won the 2014 World Cup with Germany and has three FA Cup winners’ medals, plus a La Liga title with Real Madrid.

18. Yuvraj Singh

Endorsements: $31million

Search score: 1

Social media following: 14.5million

Indian Premier League: Sunrisers Hyderabad impressive in season-opener with 35-run victory over Royal Challengers Bangalore
Yuvraj Singh is a legend in cricket

Cricket legend Singh is still playing the sport at the age of 37. The all-rounder was a key performer in one-day internationals for India during the 2000s. In 2011, Singh helped India win the 2011 Cricket World Cup and was named the player of the tournament, but was diagnosed with cancer later that year. After making a full recovery, he made his playing return in March 2012.

17. Serena Williams

Endorsements: $18.11million

Search score: 37

Social media following: 10.8million

9. Serena Williams (American professional tennis player, currently ranked women's singles no.1)
Serena Williams is passionate on the court

The 37-year-old is a 23-time Grand Slam winner and is currently ranked at No.10 in the world. After her 2018 US Open defeat to Naomi Osaka, Williams was fined $17,000 by the Tennis Association after receiving three code violations, one which included verbal abuse towards the umpire.

16. Antoine Griezmann

Endorsements: $23million

Search score: 20

Social media following: 22.6million

Antoine Griezmann won the Europa League with Atletico Madrid last season

The prolific forward was France’s top scorer with six goals at Euro 2016 as his country lost to Portugal in the final. But Griezmann and France managed to bounce back two years later by winning the 2018 World Cup. He was the tournament’s second-highest scorer with four goals, two behind Golden Boot winner Harry Kane.

15. Khabib Nurmagomedov

Endorsements: $3.9million

Search score: 100

Social media following: 13.4million

Khabib Nurmagomedov is serving a lengthy ban

MMA fighter Nurmagomedov was handed a nine-month suspension and fined £500,000 after jumping the octagon fence and attacking Conor McGregor’s team in October. His fight with McGregor at UFC 229 had a record 2.4million pay-per-view buys.

14. Kylian Mbappe

Endorsements: $18.87million

Search score: 32

Social media following: 23.5million

Kylian Mbappe kisses the World Cup

Mbappe is tipped to be a future Ballon d’Or winner. At just 19 years of age, he played a crucial role in France’s World Cup win and scored in the final against Croatia.

13. MS Dhoni

Endorsements: $28million

Search score: 5

Social media following: 20.5million

India captain MS Dhoni has retired from Test cricket with immediate effect
MS Dhoni is a safe pair of hands behind the wicket

Dhoni captained India between 2007 and 2016, including their 2011 Cricket World Cup victory. He is regarded as one of the world’s best wicket-keepers.

12. Paul Pogba

Endorsements: $32million

Search score: 15

Social media following: 30.7million

Paul Pogba is one of the Premier League’s best players

Pogba is very active on social media so it’s easy to see why he has such a huge following. He’s won titles with Juventus and domestic cups at Manchester United. Along with Griezmann and Mbappe, he was part of France’s World Cup-winning squad last summer.

11. Kevin Durant

Endorsements: $32million

Search score: 9

Social media following: 17.4million

Kevin Durant fell out with the media earlier this year

Durant is one of the highest-earning basketball players in the world. He is a two-time NBA champion and represented the USA in the 2012 and 2016 Olympics.

10. Tiger Woods

Endorsements: $42million

Search score: 20

Social media following: 6.4million

Tiger Woods does not want to retire yet

Legendary golfer Woods won his 80th PGA Tour title in September, which was his first since August 2013. He is considered one of the best golfers of all time.

9. Stephen Curry

Endorsements: $42million

Search score: 12

Social media following: 23million

Stephen Curry is the only unanimous MVP in the history of basketball
Stephen Curry is the only unanimous MVP in the history of basketball

Another basketball player, Curry is a three-time NBA champion with the Warriors. He is a lethal shooter and has been called one of the game’s best by fellow players.

8. Rafael Nadal

Endorsements: $29.3million

Search score: 40

Social media following: 15.6million

Red-hot Rafa Nadal beats Andy Murray at the ATP Tour Finals
Rafael Nadal’s career has been hampered with injury

The Spaniard is ranked as the world’s No.2 tennis player, behind Djokovic. He has had great battles with Djokovic, Roger Federer and Andy Murray in the past. Nadal has won the French Open an impressive 11 times.

7. Virat Kohli

Endorsements: $20million

Search score: 25

Social media following: 37.1million

Virat Kohli might already be the greatest ODI batsman of all time

He has been the captain of the India cricket team since 2013. He will be hoping to lead his country to success at this summer’s Cricket World Cup in England.

6. Roger Federer

Endorsements: $41.5million

Search score: 23

Social media following: 14.5million

Wimbledon 2015: Sublime Federer ends Murray's hopes of a second title
Andy Murray and Roger Federer have had some memorable games at Wimbledon

A serial winner in his prime, Federer is still going strong at the age of 37. He won his 20th Grand Slam title at the Australian Open last year.

5. Conor McGregor

Endorsements: $15million

Search score: 100

Social media following: 29.7million

Conor McGregor is looking for his next major fight

McGregor was banned for six months and fined $50,000 for his part in the Nurmagomedov brawl. He is a former UFC featherweight and lightweight champion.

4. Neymar

Endorsements: $19million

Search score: 55

Social media following: 107.2million

Neymar is a star in Paris

Neymar became the world’s most expensive player after joining Paris Saint-Germain for £200million from Barcelona in 2017. He has won domestic trophies in France and Barcelona.

3. Lionel Messi

Endorsements: $28million

Search score: 54

Social media following: 103.1million

Is Lionel Messi the greatest player of all time?

Messi is viewed as one of the greatest footballers of all time. Since making his Barcelona debut in 2004, he has won nine La Liga titles and four Champions League trophies. Argentina’s failed attempts to win the World Cup have been Messi’s only blip on a hugely successful career.

2. LeBron James

Endorsements: $52million

Search score: 47

Social media following: 45.3million

LeBron James is commonly regarded as the best basketball player on the planet

James is considered one as the world’s best basketball players at the moment. He is the fourth all-time scorer in NBA with 32,377 points.

1. Cristiano Ronaldo

Endorsements: $37million

Search score: 100

Social media following: 148million

Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring his hat-trick against Atletico on Tuesday

The debate will never end between who is the world’s best footballer – Ronaldo or Messi? The former Manchester United and Real Madrid proved he’s still got it after scoring a hat-trick in Juventus’ 3-0 win over Atletico Madrid in the Champions League earlier this week.

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