25 March, 2014 - 15:56

Top 10 richest football players


David Beckham, who has been at the top of the list for many seasons, finished his playing career last year and stepped down as a king of wealthy footballers. Vive le Roi!

10. Thierry Henry — €57m

The French forward turned 36 now. He has earned his fortune through contracts with Nike, Renault and Gillette. While playing for Barcelona, Henry was earning €5,6m. After transferring to New York Red Bulls in 2010, he became the best best paid player in MLS, above David Beckham. He earns €3,2m including bonuses. Thierry also represents PUMA and Red Bull. The Frenchman possesses a house in London, worth €6,8m and €11,1m apartments in New York.


9. Gianluigi Buffon — €63m

The Italy national team skipper has been successful in business away from football field: Gigi bought out 56% of Zucchi, Italian textile producer. Zucchi shares rose by almost 107% last December, making Buffon earn €19,5m in the space of just one month, more than in four years with Juventus (his wages are €4,5m). Juve contract runs out in the summer 2015, and the club are set to cut down on his wages. Besides, Buffon has a personal agreement with PUMA.


8. Zlatan Ibrahimovic — €69m

Zlatan turned his name in a brand, acquired a 500 hectare island just outside Stockholm and became the first football player to sell autobiography via mobile apps. This guy definitely dares to Zlatan.

Zlatan’s island

Even after failing to qualify for the World Cup, Zlatan remains a top marketing target for various companies with Nike and Xbox among the main ones. He has real estates in Milan, Paris, New York, Stockholm, Malmo and a small Swedish ski resort, Are. He even had his postmark emitted in Sweden. Zlatan earn around €15m a season at Paris Saint-Germain.

7. Ronaldinho — €78m

Ronny knocked up a fortune after winning the 2002 World Cup. In a year he signed a deal with Barcelona, two years later won Ballon D’Or. After leaving for AC Milan, Ronaldinho was earning €6,2m a year plus €1,1m in bonuses. Ronaldinho still represents Nike. Atletico Mineiro put him on a €2,7m a year contract, and Ronaldinho payed back with helping them win Copa Libertadores for the first time in history. In 2013 he was named South America player of the year. Ronaldinho has real estate in Greece, Brazil, Barcelona, Florida and lake Como.


6. Neymar family — €80m

Still at Santos, Neymar earned around €20m/year courtesy of advertising agreements: Nike, Panasonic, Heliar (batteries), Volkswagen, Claro (mobile operator), Santander, Guarana Antarctica (soft drink), Red Bull and Unilever.


One of the most misterious transfers in football history happened last summer. It is still unclear who and how much paid and received for Brazilian whiz, but the deal has already cost job to Barcelona president Sandro Rosell. Official site of FC Barcelona stated Neymar got €10m assignment allowance and a five-year contract with annual wages of €8,8m. The player’s parents received a ‘compensation’ of €40m.

Barcelona does not possess his image rights as Neymar cooperates with Doyen Global investment fund, who use his name and image outside Brazil. Blaugrana forward has real estate in Sao Paulo and a €5m yacht.

5. Kaka — €82m

Kaka stays in the top 10 despite not going for the best financial opportunities at times. He refused to stay with Real Madrid for another two years, earning €9m/year wages in order to join AC Milan and become a regular in the squad for €4m, and even refused to take his wages while being injured shortly after rejoining the Italian club. Earlier on Kaka denied an offer from Manchester City that would make him a top-earning player in the world, getting Arsene Wenger’s praise for not running for the big dollar. Classy stuff from the Brazilian.


Despite failing to impress at Real Madrid, Kaka is still popular with global brands, such as Adidas, EA Sports, Sony and Armani.

4. Wayne Rooney — €84m

Rooney has rocketed into the top after signing an immense new £300k a week contract with Manchester United. He will get no less than €95m in five years playing football alone. His marketing abilities are not so enthusiastic. Coca-Cola terminated partnership with Wazza after reports suggesting he had commited adultery. EA Sports were just as harsh.


Rooney starred in Nike and Samsung campaigns, which saw him get €4m , and signed a 5-year deal with Harper Collins publishing house that promises him around €6m.

3. Samuel Eto’o — €85m

Two years with Anji made the Cameroonian one of the richest sportsmen outside North America and the top-earning football player. Unprecedented €20m a season and rumours about lavish life in Russia accompanied the striker. But he was generous, too. Having qualified for the 2010 World Cup, Samuel presented a €33,000 watch to every single Cameroon player.


He signed a one-year contract with Chelsea worth €5m, and a partnership with PUMA, worth the same amount. Besides, Samuel advertises a car manufacturer Ford and John Richmond apparel. He has a fine collection of automobiles, worth an estimated €5m.

2. Lionel Messi — €146m

The Argentine wizard gave away the Balon D’Or and the top-earning football player tag to Cristiano Ronaldo. Back in 2012 he signed a 6-year deal with Barcelona, worth €15m a year. However, former president Sandro Rosell claimed his wages could be subject for a further raise.


A long-term contract with Adidas brings Leo around €2m annually. He became the second sportsman after David Beckham to launch his own Adidas line. Messi partners Kobe Bryant in Turkish Airlines commercials, advertises EA Sports, makes part of Samsung’s Galaxy 11 team and has a contract with Gatorade. He has recently followed the steps of Thierry Henry and Tiger Woods in Gillette advertizing campaign.

Lionel has estates in Barcelona and Rosario. Ferrari F430 Spider and Audi R8 are among his cars.

1. Cristiano Ronaldo — €148m

Last September CR7 penned a new, 17m-a-year deal with Real Madrid. Nike pays him €6m a year. Armani, Castrol Edge, Jacob & Co, Herbalife, Banco Espirito Santo and KFC also boast partnership with the Portuguese.

Last year Cristiano launched his own underwear brand. Together with his sister he owns a CR7 boutique in Madeira. His own museum is open on his native island. The player has estates in Madrid, Lisbon and Madeira.


photo: camergiste.blogspot.com, Getty Images, AP, zimbio.com

Read also:
Top 10 best kits for 2014 World Cup

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Author: Leon Smolski

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25 March 2014, 09:34

Why did I go to school instead of playing football? :)

Banana's picture
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29 March 2014, 00:13

Hi #yolo
It doesn't matter how rich u are as a soccer player it is how u play and it is when people from all around the world coming to gather and playing a match and having fun

Anonymous 's picture
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29 March 2014, 00:14

Banana wrote:

Why did I go to school instead of playing football? :)

Banana wrote:

Why did I go to school instead of playing football? :)


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29 March 2014, 00:15

Banana wrote:

Why did I go to school instead of playing football? :)

Banana wrote:

Why did I go to school instead of playing football? :)


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1 November 2016, 14:29

Anonymous wrote:

Banana wrote:

Why did I go to school instead of playing football? :)

Banana wrote:

Why did I go to school instead of playing football? :)



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