• Saturday, April 13, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

Meet world’s richest footballer worth 16 times more than Ronaldo and Messi combined

Feature image, Messi and Ronaldo

The renowned duo of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, each valued at just under £1 billion, Messi’s net worth is estimated at around £471.5 million, and Ronaldo’s wealth is estimated to be around £500 million, and they are not the richest footballers.

Messi, 36, and Ronaldo, 38, now compete for Inter Miami in the MLS and Al-Nassr in the Saudi Pro League, respectively, having secured their families’ financial futures for generations with their wealth, pale in comparison.

Yet, even these legendary players are overshadowed by an individual whose inherited fortune looms large in the affluent domain of financial wealth.

Meet Faiq Bolkiah, a player who struggled to secure playing time with Leicester City and Chelsea, emerges as the world’s richest footballer, with a net worth of approximately £15.7 billion. Born in Los Angeles, the 25-year-old is the nephew of the Sultan of Brunei.

With his familial ties, Faiq Bolkiah stands to inherit a significant portion of the royal family’s £200 billion fortune. Bolkiah’s net worth surpasses Messi and Ronaldo’s combined by more than 16 times.

Though crowned the world’s  richest footballer, Bolkiah’s on-field journey in England hasn’t mirrored his financial success.

He spent his entire youth career in the country, featuring in spells with Southampton, Chelsea, and Leicester. While his on-field career hasn’t yet reached the heights of his financial standing, Bolkiah remains a young talent with the potential to carve his career path.

His journey began at the age of 13 when he caught the attention of Southampton, subsequently joining Chelsea. Bolkiah’s presence became notable during a decisive defeat for Southampton’s Under-16s against Chelsea, marking the inception of his football recognition.

According to Wikipedia, in 2014, Bolkiah transitioned to Chelsea, signing a two-year youth contract with the Premier League club after training with Reading and undergoing a trial with Arsenal. While associated with Arsenal, he participated in the 2013 Lion City Cup, contributing a goal in a 2–1 victory over a team from Singapore.

As his contract with Chelsea approached expiration in the summer of 2016, he departed from the club in December 2015. Following a trial with Stoke City, he officially joined Leicester City in March 2016, securing a reported three-year professional contract.

He extended his deal by one year in the summer of 2019 before leaving the club the following year to join the B team of Portuguese side Marítimo.

Faiq Bolkiah once revealed in an interview that his parents highly supported his football career.

In an interview with FourFourTwo, Faiq said: “I’ve played football since as early as I can remember, and from a young age, I’ve always enjoyed going out on the field and having the ball at my feet.

“My parents have always been supportive in helping me to achieve my dreams of being a footballer, and they trained me hard both psychologically and physically through my childhood years, so I have to say they are my role models.”