2019 was another interesting year in sports. From the New England Patriots winning their sixth Super Bowl to the Washington Nationals winning their first-ever World Series, the year did not disappoint when it comes to teams and players making history.
But who were the top athletes this year when it comes to social media? Twitter recently ranked the top female and male athletes worldwide and it was determined by unique authors discussing the sports figures on Twitter from the start of the year until Nov. 15. And because it's worldwide, the list is pretty interesting.
When it comes to the top male athletes, five are soccer players. Soccer is still the most popular sport in the world so some of the top soccer players were discussed a lot on social media. As for the rest of the list, two current NBA players, one former NBA player and two NFL players made the cut.
Here's a look at top male athletes of 2019 according to Twitter.
Lovely goal from Neymar, beautifully manufactured by Mbappe: pic.twitter.com/zfcWJZI04K— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) December 11, 2019
Neymar is one of the most popular soccer players in the world as he's been on the Brazil national team since 2010. He has scored 61 goals in 101 matches for Brazil which makes him the third-highest scorer in team history. He led the team to a gold medal win in the 2016 Summer Olympics.
Lionel Messi is the only one on this list that doesn't have a Twitter account. But he's not worried about it because he's focused being one of the best players in the world. He is Argentina's all-time leading goal scorer and Forbes named him the highest-paid athlete.
Cristiano Ronaldo • 2011/12— Sheikh Hammad (@ronaldocomps) December 11, 2019
Playmaking genius🐐 pic.twitter.com/8iR7ykmwX7
Cristiano Ronaldo has been with the Portugal national team since 2003 and has scored 99 goals in 164 matches. He was named the world's most famous athlete by ESPN in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019. He is also the most followed user on Instagram.
Same opponent. Same arena. Same result.December 11, 2019
LeBron James joined the Los Angeles Lakers last year and missed the last part of the season with an injury. This year is a different story as the Lakers have the best record in the league and James is playing at an MVP level. He has won three NBA titles and he's a four-time MVP winner.
Ring No. 2 for No. 2.December 12, 2019
Kawhi Leonard came to Toronto to win a title and he delivered. The Raptors were able to take down the Golden State Warriors and give the city their first NBA Championship. He is now with the Los Angles Clippers and it's possible he could win another title in 2020.
Kobe Bryant really threw the ball of Serge Ibaka’s back to get the assist to Jordan Hill.December 13, 2019
Kobe Bryant retired from the NBA three years ago, but he's still very popular on social media. Byant won five NBA titles during his career and he won the MVP award in 2008. He was also named to the all-star team 18 times.
The fact that Tom Brady continues to win at 42 years old and he's active on social media makes it an easy choice for him to be on the list. Brady has led the Patriots to six Super Bowl wins and he has won the MVP award three times.
🇫🇷 Kylian Mbappe’s goal yesterday against Nantes is pure art. The assist from Di Maria to set him up was top quality but that finish is naughty. 😳 pic.twitter.com/1HUl9aL0Vf— FutbolBible (@FutbolBible) December 5, 2019
Kylian Mbappe has been on France's national team since 2017 and has scored 13 goals in 34 matches. In 2018, Mbappe helped France win the World Cup as he scored on the final match. He was named the FIFA World Cup Best Young Player Award for his work in the tournament.
Keisuke Honda was on Japan's national team from 2008-2018 and scored 37 goals in 98 matches. He helped the team win the Asian Cup and was named Player of the Tournament. He's now the general manager and coach of the Cambodia National Team.
It's no surprise to see Antonio Brown on the list since he's done more work on social media than on the field. Brown was with three teams in 2019 and was either traded or cut from each organization. From getting into a war with the NFL over his helmet to being sued for sexual assault, it has been a very wild 2019 for the former Steelers and Patriots wide receiver.