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Beckham tops rich list
Updated: 2005-04-05 10:07

England football captain David Beckham has enhanced his position as Great Britain's richest young sportsman despite his low productivity with Real Madrid.

England's David Beckham has become Great Britain's richest young sportsman, soccer365.net reported.[AFP]

Beckham, 29, has yet to win a medal since moving to the Bernabeu two years ago yet increased his wealth and overall advantage over fellow sportsmen aged 30 or under in the Sunday Times' Rich List 2005. In fact, Beckham, whose bounty includes some earnings by wife Victoria, is the only sports personality to feature in the overall list of Britain's 1,000 most wealthy individuals. 

Their £75million fortune places them equal 654th on the main list, thanks to the former Manchester United midfielder's £5million-a-year wages in Spain and £15million-a-year-plus endorsements from companies like Gillette, Vodafone and adidas.

Madrid team-mate Michael Owen is the next rung down on the sporting ladder with £30million, an increase of £5million in a year, which represents half of Beckham's increase. However, the 25-year-old has edged ahead of former Liverpool team-mate Robbie Fowler, whose investment in property is credited for much of his income.

Foreign stars Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira, Arsenal's Frenchmen, and Dutch duo Ruud van Nistelrooy and Patrick Kluivert, of Manchester United and Newcastle respectively, make the top dozen. As does much-maligned Birmingham striker Emile Heskey, who took most of his estimated £11million during his time with Liverpool.

Such are the sums from basic soccer salaries and endorsements, in fact, that only five sportsmen outside football feature.

Formula One driver Jenson Button has numerous salaries and sponsorship deals, which rank him equal fifth with £20million, while British tennis number one Tim Henman's £6million career prize money ensures his spot in ninth place with a £14million fortune.

Little-known Michael Olowokandi, raised here but a star with American basketball team Minnesota Timberwolves, is included thanks to a four-year contract worth £10.1million while Jonny Wilkinson's World Cup heroics, which gained infinitely more attention, have pushed the rugby union player into the £8million bracket.

Ryder Cup golfer Luke Donald, 27, is on a par with Aston Villa's Colombian forward Juan Pablo Angel with career wealth of £5million.

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