How much do soccer players make? On the list of the world’s best-paid footballers, three LaLiga Santander stars make the top 10, while recent moves have changed the order of the list. Here we look at the players with the largest weekly wage packets in the game and reveal the top 10.
These figures were collected by Radio Times and have been converted to dollars. Keep in mind that they are before tax and exclude any extra fees, payments or bonuses. Plus, these are the players with the biggest basic pay, not necessarily those who earn the most as sponsorship and endorsement deals are not included here.
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How much do soccer players make?
Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich) – 483,000 dollars per week
The only Bundesliga player on the list, Lewandowski was named FIFA’s Men’s Player of the Year in 2020. He has an incredible scoring record in addition to a large trophy collection. The Polish striker is the Bundesliga’s all-time leading foreign scorer and has won the German top flight in nine of his 11 years in the country, twice with Dortmund and seven times with Bayern.
David de Gea (Manchester United) – 517,000 dollars per week
The only Spanish player on the list, De Gea is the top-earning goalkeeper in the world. Manchester United signed him from Atletico Madrid over a decade ago for a then-record Premier League fee for a goalkeeper and he has been the club’s No.1 pretty consistently since then.
Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City) – 531,000 dollars per week
With his new contract, the Belgian midfielder is the joint-top earner in England and has the highest wage at a club that boasts many high earners. De Bruyne has been a terrific player for the Citizens and vital in their winning three league titles in his six years in Manchester.
Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United) – 531,000 dollars per week
The Portuguese forward has dropped down this list with his summer transfer from Juventus, where his wage was more than double what he’ll earn at Old Trafford, but he is still the joint-top earner in the Premier League. Ronaldo is one of the most recognizable athletes on the planet. He is possibly the most popular footballer in the world, with his sponsorships and other interests worth in the region of 470m dollars per year.
Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain) – 566,000 dollars per week
The lowest-paid of PSG’s top three stars but still a top 10 earner worldwide, Mbappe is sure to remain on this list for at least the next decade, wherever he is playing his football.
Gareth Bale (Real Madrid) – 690,000 dollars per week
Despite the dent his reputation has suffered in recent years, Bale remains one of the highest-paid players in the game and sneaks into the top five courtesy of Ronaldo’s move to Manchester United. The Welshman’s days on this list might be numbered. However, the return of Carlo Ancelotti to Real Madrid has given him a second chance that he appears to be grasping.
Antoine Griezmann (Barcelona) – 793,000 dollars per week
After the departure of Lionel Messi, Griezmann is Barcelona’s only representative in the top 10. The Catalan club’s struggles are made more difficult by his hefty salary. After a disappointing few years, he needs to start justifying his salary on the pitch this season.
Luis Suarez (Atletico Madrid) – 793,000 dollars per week
Perhaps a surprise in the top three, Suarez has been proving Atleti spent their money well and that he can still do it at the top level. After being allowed to leave by the Blaugrana, Suarez has excelled at Griezmann’s former club, helping them win the LaLiga Santander title in his first season.
Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain) – 836,000 dollars per week
The second PSG player on the list, Neymar is now second only to his new teammate after Ronaldo lost his spot at number two. The Brazilian forward is a global star but cannot compete with Ronaldo in terms of sponsorship deals.
Lionel Messi (Paris Saint-Germain – 1,325,000 dollars per week
New club, same status. The top player on the planet, perhaps the greatest of all time, it’s no surprise he commands the biggest wages in the sport. The Argentine is the only footballer earning more than $1m per week, and his bonuses and sponsorships will take that figure even higher.