Sports
2.8k voters

Who Is The Most Famous Athlete In The World Right Now?

Updated September 10, 2020 40.2k votes 2.8k voters 25.3k views77 items

List RulesVote up the most famous athletes in the world right now and those who currently dominate their sport.

When it comes to the most famous athletes in the world right now, a select few names easily top the list. Not only that, but many of these popular players are also some of the best athletes in their respective sport. However, while skill and statistics are surely major factors in ranking athletes by fame, the most famous athlete out doesn't have to be the very best—especially not on this list. In short, it's up to you fans to decide just who takes the title for the most famous athlete, as well as those who follow close behind. 

For starters, we all know famous male athletes like Lebron James, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Roger Federer will find themselves high on the list. Then you have top female athletes like Serena Williams and Hope Solo. Keep in mind, though, the sport isn't necessarily a factor here. Whether you consider natural talent or straight statistics in determining who's the most famous, that's your choice. Perhaps it's who you see on TV the most, or those with the most endorsements. Whatever it is, give your input as to who makes the list of best athletes today with the most fame. 

Cast your votes for the most famous athletes below, and feel free to add any athletes missing from the list. 

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  • 1
    Cristiano Ronaldo
    1,504
    728

    BirthplaceSanto António, Portugal

    Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro GOIH ComM (born 5 February 1985) is a Portuguese... more on Wikipedia
  • 2
    Lionel Messi
    958
    647

    BirthplaceRosario, Argentina

    Lionel Andrés Messi Cuccittini (Spanish pronunciation: [ljoˈnel anˈdɾez ˈmesi] (listen); born... more on Wikipedia

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  • 3
    Usain Bolt
    624
    427

    Usain Bolt

    Age: 34

    BirthplaceSherwood Content, Jamaica

    Usain St Leo Bolt (; born 21 August 1986) is a retired Jamaican sprinter. He is a world... more on Wikipedia

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  • 4
    Roger Federer
    810
    620

    BirthplaceBasel, Switzerland

    ← Roger Federer (German pronunciation: [ˈrɔdʒər ˈfeːdərər]; born 8 August 1981) is a Swiss... more on Wikipedia

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  • 5
    Conor McGregor
    748
    615

    BirthplaceDublin, Republic of Ireland

    Conor Anthony McGregor (born July 14, 1988) is an Irish former professional mixed martial... more on Wikipedia
  • 6
    Michael Jordan
    94
    51

    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, United States of America

    Michael Jeffrey Jordan (born February 17, 1963), also known by his initials MJ, is an American... more on Wikipedia

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  • 7
    LeBron James
    671
    590

    BirthplaceAkron, Ohio, United States of America

    LeBron Raymone James Sr. (; born December 30, 1984) is an American professional basketball... more on Wikipedia

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  • 8
    John Cena
    490
    444

    John Cena

    Age: 43

    BirthplaceWest Newbury, Massachusetts, United States of America

    John Felix Anthony Cena Jr. (; born April 23, 1977) is an American professional wrestler,... more on Wikipedia

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  • 9
    Rafael Nadal
    580
    531

    BirthplaceManacor, Spain

    Rafael "Rafa" Nadal Parera (Catalan: [rəf(ə)ˈɛl nəˈðal pəˈɾeɾə], Spanish: [rafaˈel naˈðal... more on Wikipedia
  • 10
    Maria Sharapova
    603
    561

    BirthplaceNyagan, Russia

    Maria Yuryevna Sharapova (Russian: Мари́я Ю́рьевна Шара́пова, IPA: [mɐˈrʲijə ˈjʉrʲjɪvnə... more on Wikipedia

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  • 11
    Neymar
    688
    683

    Neymar

    Age: 28

    BirthplaceMogi das Cruzes, Brazil

    Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior (Brazilian Portuguese: [nejˈmaʁ dɐ ˈsiwvɐ ˈsɐ̃tus ˈʒũɲoʁ]; born... more on Wikipedia
  • 12
    Virat Kohli
    664
    682

    BirthplaceDelhi, India

    Virat Kohli (pronunciation ; born 5 November 1988) is an Indian cricketer who currently... more on Wikipedia

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  • 13
    Novak Djokovic
    502
    520

    BirthplaceBelgrade, Serbia

    Novak Djokovic (Serbian: Новак Ђоковић, romanized: Novak Đoković, pronounced [nôʋaːk... more on Wikipedia
  • 14
    Manuel Neuer
    266
    269

    BirthplaceGelsenkirchen, Germany

    Manuel Peter Neuer (German pronunciation: [ˈmaːnu̯eːl ˈnɔʏ.ɐ, -ɛl -]; born 27 March 1986) is a... more on Wikipedia
  • 15
    Tom Brady
    421
    465

    Tom Brady

    Age: 43

    BirthplaceSan Mateo, California, United States of America

    Thomas Edward Patrick Brady Jr. (born August 3, 1977) is an American football quarterback for... more on Wikipedia

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  • 16
    Lindsey Vonn
    275
    319

    BirthplaceSaint Paul, Minnesota, United States of America

    Lindsey Caroline Vonn (née Kildow ; born October 18, 1984) is an American former World Cup... more on Wikipedia

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  • 17
    Serena Williams
    340
    402

    BirthplaceSaginaw, Michigan, United States of America

    Serena Jameka Williams (born September 26, 1981) is an American professional tennis player and... more on Wikipedia

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  • 18
    Yelena Isinbayeva
    247
    294

    BirthplaceVolgograd, Russia

    Yelena Gadzhievna Isinbayeva (Russian: Елена Гаджиевна Исинбаева, IPA: [jɪˈlʲɛnə gɐˈdʐɨjɪvnə... more on Wikipedia
  • 19
    Mikaela Shiffrin
    181
    227

    Mikaela Shiffrin

    Age: 25

    BirthplaceVail, Colorado

    Mikaela Pauline Shiffrin is an American World Cup alpine ski racer with the U.S. Ski Team,... more on Wikipedia

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    #45 of 238 The Best Female Athletes of All Time#15 of 62 The Greatest Alpine Skiers of All Time

  • 20
    Stephen Curry
    327
    429

    BirthplaceAkron, Ohio, United States of America

    Wardell Stephen "Steph" Curry II ( STEF-ən; born March 14, 1988) is an American professional... more on Wikipedia

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  • 21
    Katie Ledecky
    163
    215

    BirthplaceBethesda, Maryland

    Kathleen Genevieve Ledecky is an American competition swimmer, Olympic gold medalist, and... more on Wikipedia
  • 22
    Laura Dahlmeier
    152
    202

    BirthplaceGarmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany

    Laura Dahlmeier is a German biathlete. Dahlmeier started in her first world cup races in the... more on Wikipedia
  • 23
    Rory McIlroy
    306
    414

    BirthplaceHolywood, Bangor, United Kingdom

    Rory McIlroy (born 4 May 1989) is a professional golfer from Northern Ireland who is a member... more on Wikipedia

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    #40 of 153 The Best Golfers Of All Time#1 of 60 The Best Professional Golfers Right Now, Ranked

  • 24
    Andrés Iniesta
    386
    527

    BirthplaceFuentealbilla, Spain

    Andrés Iniesta Luján (Spanish pronunciation: [anˈdɾes iˈnjesta luˈxan]; born 11 May 1984) is a... more on Wikipedia

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  • 25
    Alistair Brownlee
    130
    186

    BirthplaceDewsbury, United Kingdom

    Alistair Edward Brownlee, MBE (born 23 April 1988) is a British triathlete. He is the only... more on Wikipedia