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  • Sports - Football - Gossips
  • Updated: October 17, 2023

Ten Highest-Paid Footballers In 2023

Ten Highest-Paid Footballers In 2023

Football players earn vast sums of money every year and we have rounded up the highest-paid footballers in the world in 2023.

Footballers’ salaries at the very top end of the game have risen exponentially in recent years, especially following the entrance onto the scene of huge multinationals, oligarchs and oil states as club owners.

The rise of the Saudi Pro League has also had a significant impact on the game's top earners.

Surprisingly, five of the top ten football earners are presently playing outside the top European leagues.

It certainly pays to be good at football, but who are the highest-paid players in the world? We've compiled the top ten highest-paid footballers in the world in 2023.

 

1. Cristiano Ronaldo ($260m)

Cristiano Ronaldo

Ronaldo has become the first man in over 20 years of professional football to score in five World Cups.

So it's no wonder that he's on top of the list of the world's highest-paid football players.

When he signed a two-year contract with his old club Manchester United in the summer of 2021, he became the highest-paid player in the history of the English Premier League. But we all know how that turned out.

His latest move to Al Nassr, as a result of "winning everything in Europe," sees the player earn a stunning $260 million per year, making him the highest-earning football player in the world.

 

2. Lionel Messi ($135m)

It's astonishing that Messi turned down a €1 billion deal to join the Saudi Pro League, but MLS proved to be a more intriguing prospect for the 36-year-old.

"I want to get back to enjoying myself, enjoying my family, my children, and the day-to-day," Messi told reporters after signing with Inter Miami.

Messi is killing it in the United States, as one would anticipate. We haven't seen Messi this pleased at club level in a long time, now that he's reunited with Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba.

 

3. Neymar ($112m)

Neymar

Without Neymar, Champions League nights will not be the same. The Brazilian superstar recently joined Al Hilal and is now making significantly more than he was at PSG.

According to various sources, Neymar's deal with Al Hilal includes access to a private jet, a €80,000 win bonus, a massive villa with staff, and €500,000 for each Instagram post promoting Saudi Arabia.

 

4. Kylian Mbappé ($110m)

Kylian Mbappe

Given the stranglehold European football has had on football for the last several decades, it’s quite remarkable that Mbappe is still among the few European footballers who make it into the top 10 earners for 2023.

His long-term future at PSG is still in doubt, although he has recently been reintegrated into first-team training after a spell with the bomb squad.

Transfer links to Real Madrid remain rife, with plenty believing he will join the Spanish club on a free transfer next summer upon his deal at PSG expiring.
 

5. Karim Benzema ($106m)

Karim Benzema

After winning everything Real Madrid had to offer, Benzema decided it was time for a new challenge this summer.

The 35-year-old is currently the world's joint-highest earner, making a crazy sum per week while playing for Al-Ittihad.

So far, the French attacker has adjusted well to life in Saudi Arabia, scoring three goals in his first five appearances for his new club.

We're confident he'll provide plenty of unforgettable moments for Al-Ittihad fans in the coming years.

 

6. Erling Haaland ($58m)

Haaland

Manchester City's big signing has lived up to great expectations after signing a massive contract.

Haaland's entrance in 2022 was not his first taste of Manchester life; his father played for the Citizens in the early 2000s, which resulted in a now-famous photo of a young Haaland Jr in a City shirt.

Erling Haaland scored 25 goals in his first 19 Premier League games, an incredible achievement for the game's future global superstar.

 

7. Mohamed Salah ($53m)

Mohamed Salah

There was much discussion about whether Liverpool should have granted Mohamed Salah the massive £350,000-a-week contract increase that many thought Sadio Mané deserved.

Despite Liverpool's out-of-form performances, the 30-year-old Egyptian scored 19 goals and provided 10 assists in 36 Premier League appearances last season, earning him US$35 million in on-field wages.

Furthermore, the 31-year-old nearly became the Saudi Pro League's most expensive purchase after Al Ittihad reportedly offered a transfer fee of US$190 million.

However, because both Salah and Liverpool were unwilling to make the deal in the final week of the transfer window, it never happened.

Moreover, the Liverpool forward has endorsement deals with the likes of Adidas, Pepsi, Gucci, and Vodafone among many, which brings in an additional US$18 million in off-the-field earnings. 

 

8. Sadio Mané ($52m)

Sadio Mane

For whatever reason, Mane never found his groove at Bayern Munich.

Liverpool fans were distraught when he left the club, but the Senegalese forward hasn't been the same since.

He was only at the Allianz Arena for a year before Saudi clubs came calling. Al Nassr eventually won the race to acquire his signature.
 

9. Kevin De Bruyne ($39m)

Kevin De Bruyne

He is arguably one of the best players in the world right now, and that quality is reflected in a hefty wage package.

The Belgian midfielder has put his signing on a renewed contract in the summer of 2021. He has put pen to paper to extend loyalty to Manchester City until 2025.

This luxury will cost the Citizens more than $39 million a year, though the exact figure is unknown – and you can be sure to add in a few mil in off-field earnings

 

10. Harry Kane ($36m)

Harry Kane

With Daniel Levy not lowering his asking price and Bayern unwilling to match his demands, it looked like Harry Kane would have to wait at least another year before finally getting his deserved big club move away from the Tottenham Hotspur stadium.

However, in the end, the two clubs found common ground and Harry Kane became a Bayern Munich after signing a four-year deal. A deal that would bring him US$26 million in on-field earnings.

Besides, his new endorsement deals with brands like OxeFit and Skechers have taken his off-field earnings to US$10 million annually. 

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