Premier League

The world’s highest paid footballers

Kevin De Bruyne

As much as fans would like to think otherwise, elite modern football is unashamedly centred around cold, hard and often dirty cash.

With transfer fees rising exponentially, player wages skyrocketing and lucrative brand deals reaching new peaks, exorbitant sums of money are now the beating black heart of the beautiful game.

The likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe are, rather unsurprisingly, among the highest earning players across the world, but even football’s mediocre talents seem to earn a small fortune on a weekly basis these days.

Here are football’s biggest earners around the world.

*All salary data courtesy of Capology

Premier League

Kevin De Bruyne

Man City boast some big earners / Matt McNulty/GettyImages

Branded as the ‘best league in the world’, logic would suggest the Premier League also boasts the highest earners. That’s not strictly true these days, although the English top flight does have the highest average wage of any European league – bettered only by the Saudi Pro League.

Given their exceptional wealth, it’s hardly surprising that Manchester City have the highest paid player in the division on their roster. That’s Kevin De Bruyne (£400,000 p/w), whose incredible quality justifiably sets him out from the rest of the Premier League, although he is closely followed by his merciless teammate Erling Haaland (£375,000 p/w).

Rather unbelievably given their recent performances, the Manchester United duo of Casemiro (£350,000 p/w) and Raphael Varane (£340,000 p/w) are in the top five Premier League earners, while Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah sits joint third with a weekly wage of £350,000.

La Liga

Frenkie De Jong

De Jong has drained Barca’s finances / Pedro Salado/GettyImages

La Liga frequently boasted the highest earners in world football during the days when Ronaldo, Messi and Neymar all represented the division, but wages don’t reach quite as high now. Having said that, there are still some opulent footballers in the Spanish top flight.

The biggest earner in Spain is Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong, who earns £620,000 per week in Catalonia. The club’s financial position makes paying the Dutch international such sums a significant problem and it’s one of the reasons he is often linked with a move away from Barca in every transfer window.

Barca also boast the second top earner in Robert Lewandowski (£449,000 p/w), another talented star who takes up a huge chunk of their wage bill, but it’s Real Madrid who make up the rest of the top five.

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