Once it was dubbed the Arab invasion and now it’s called the Chinese invasion, but the one thing both have in common is the big money involvement. Football has always been a prestigious sport and is worshiped globally. The fans own their clubs but when Roman Abramovic bought Chelsea back in2004, things started to take an entirely new turn. A new manager was appointed, tasked to sign some of the biggest names in the game & make Chelsea a champion. Similar story made the headlines when Sheik Mansour bought Manchester City in 2007 and the rest is history.
It was the beginning of Arab invasion in football and clubs like PSG, Monaco, and some Russian clubs as well followed the trend. Recently, the Chinese league was able to capture everyone’s attention and it was only due to the big money they offered to some of the big names in the game. And guess what, some showed hesitation while many were comfortable accepting the offers. It is believed by many that the duo of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi is the highest paid in the world, but that’s not the case. These two prolific athletes don’t even make the top two. Surprised? Well, let’s get to the point. Here are the top 10 highest paid footballers in the world:
Barcelona had to pay a handsome amount to Neymar’s native club to acquire the services of the Brazilian maestro. Well, we are glad they did that otherwise we wouldn’t be able to see the greatest trio of all time play together, MSN. Barça are paying Neymar €275,000 per week, which may be the reason he has preferred to stay at Bernabau despite the chase from Europe’s elites.
Annual earnings of 10,000 footballers combined who earn the average wage for footballers in Europe = €300m
Neymar's annual earnings = €300m pic.twitter.com/yDJ7zC61fJ
— Team FA (@TeamFA) December 17, 2016
The 28-year-old Italian striker was enjoying the form of his life at Southampton but he risked his inclusion in the national squad by accepting an offer from Shandong Luneng – a Chinese Super League club. The Italian coach was not happy by Pelle’s decision and said that he may not be included in the national side ever. However, he is earning €290,000 per week. What else does he need?
Graziano Pelle poses with Shandong Luneng fans after striker lands in China following his £13m transfer to the club. pic.twitter.com/haBQ89yKL1
— MetroSports Ghana (@mtvsportsgh) July 12, 2016
The signing of Paul Pogba from Juventus to Manchester United was the biggest transfer ever in the summer 2016 transfer window. The high-rated French international is considered the next big thing and he has a proven record to back the statement. Well, it’s not a hidden secret that the Red Devils are paying Pogba a bag full of money as he is earning €290,000 per week.
— UtdHQ (@UtdHQ) December 31, 2016
When Hulk moved to Zenit St Petersburg from Porto, he made his intentions clear that he preferred money over class. And he further justified the allegations by becoming one of the first international stars to join the Chinese Supper League. The sixth highest paid footballer on the planet is being paid €320,000 a week.
The Argentinean Magician is being paid lavishly by Barcelona and always receives a handsome increase every time he signs a contract extension. He has been a great asset for Barcelona and has rendered his services exceptionally well. His series of good performances continues and improves every season. It is said that he is the best paid footballer, which he is for sure but not “the best”. The Argentinean wonder-kid is getting €336,000 a week for being extraordinary on the field.
— paparious (@iampaparious) November 21, 2016
When Real Madrid signed Gareth Bale from Tottenham Hotspurs, it was the biggest transfer in football’s history. Well, the Welsh running machine has recently penned down a contract extension which guarantees a robust increase in his weekly wages. The second highest paid footballer by Real Madrid and the fourth highest in the world, Gareth Bale is receiving €350,000 every week.
— Sunday World (@sundayworld) October 31, 2016
To a player who has won almost everything last year, money is not a motivating factor. The Portuguese Captain, who’s rivalry with Lionel Messi has already made both of them a legend, was the highest paid footballer before the Chinese interrupted. He received a €257 million offer to join them but he showed no interest in accepting the offer. He is happy at Bernabau and is being paid brilliantly. His weekly wage is around €365,000 per week after taxes.
— #TOP10 (@top10Global) December 29, 2016
One of the highest rated midfielders in the world, Oscar, shocked many by his decision of joining the Chinese Super League. He recently signed a contract with a Chinese Super Legaue Club, Shanghai SIPG, for €400,000 per week. At the age of 28, he hasn’t made a wise decision, according to many football greats. Well, he must have his reasons but for now he is just another one to play in China.
— Esteban Novo (@estebannovo) January 3, 2017
Five years back, Carlos Tevez was considering retiring from football as his opinion was that other factors have diluted the game and he did not like that a bit. Well, five years later, he is the highest paid footballer in the world. Carlos Tevez is the most recent one to join the Chinese Super League. The amount the veteran is receiving is obnoxiously high. €615,000 a week for a footballer who is in his late 30’s is nothing less than a shocker.
Carlos Tevez £32m a year wage means he now earns more than Paul Pogba and Wayne Rooney combined pic.twitter.com/1xa5FDt3lp
— The Front Page (@TheFront_Page) December 30, 2016
While Carlos Teves is thought to have become the highest paid footballer in the world, the truth is: he isn’t. Much to our surprise, Tevez’s fellow Argentinean, Ezequiel Lavezzi earns more in weekly wages as compared to Carlos Tevez. The 32-year-old is currently playing for Hebei China Fortune and joined the club from PSG this January.
The highest-paid player in the world right now is Ezequiel Lavezzi at Hebei China…
💰😱 He's on £798,000-a-week. pic.twitter.com/m2PVQdgVW1
— Football__Tweet (@Football__Tweet) May 12, 2017
He has scored only two goals so far for Fortune as injury concerns have kept him out for most of the season, but the Argentinean costs his club a fortune. His weekly remuneration is £798,000 which is way ahead than that of Tevez. Such an expensive bargain Lavezzi has proved to be for the Chinese.