Cristiano Ronaldo

According to the same study, overseen by Professor Gerardo Molina, Ronaldo's value at the turn of the year was worth between €150-160million - or £124-130m - which is 50 per cent more than Real Madrid paid Manchester United for his services in 2009.

The Portuguese forward's significant increase in value is no surprise given the form he has shown in the past four years at the Santiago Bernabeu, which recently earned him the FIFA Ballon d'Or award to end arch rival Messi's four-year supremacy.

Ronaldo was the world's most expensive football until Real Madrid broke their transfer record again to bring Gareth Bale to Spain, but despite the Welsh winger's arrival, the 29-year-old remains the main man in Carlo Ancelotti's side.

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