It has long been considered that the amount of money being spent on footballers is astronomical and that something should be done to limit the spending of some clubs. UEFA have introduced Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules into the game, but clubs have been able to work around these restrictions with advertising deals with other companies that their owners are in charge of. The main expenditure for majority of football clubs is the wages that they pay to their players, especially their star ones.

One of the clubs that have used advertising deals to their advantage is French side Paris Saint Germain, who are owned by Qatar Sports Investment (QSI) Group led by President Nasser Ghanim Al-Khelaifi. According to the live ticker from Bettingsites, out of the top 20 highest paid football players, five of them play for the most successful club in French history. Brazilian defender Thiago Silva is on the list, joined by attacking teammates in Edinson Cavani, Kylian Mbappe, Angel Di Maria and Neymar Jr. The reported total paid to just these five players in a season is $176,516,393.44, enough to fund a few countries, which equates to $14,508,196.73 a month or $20,150.28 an hour! Neymar Jr is the highest paid player at the club after his world record transfer from Spanish side Barcelona in 2017, earning $89,754,098.36 making him the 3rd best paid player in world football. This equates to over 50% of the money paid to the top 5 players at PSG. It’s fair to say that he is an integral part of their first team squad. He is justifying that money too, as he is currently on 32 goals in 33 games for his latest club.

Other than PSG, another club with multiple players in the top earning list, is Barcelona. They have 3 in Gerard Pique, Luis Suarez and number one on the list and five time Balon D’or winner Lionel Messi. The diminutive Argentinean is rewarded for his dedication and talent with a yearly reported salary of over $110 million. This is only the second biggest salary earned by a sports star, with only retired boxer Floyd Mayweather having earned more than Lionel Messi in the last 12 months.

Neymar, Messi and the other player completing the top 3, Cristiano Ronaldo, are three of the most recognisable people in the world today. They are also some of the wealthiest. Just in terms of the top 20, their combined salaries make up around 43% of the total earnings of the top 20, with those 3 earning a yearly salary of $308,155,737.70 between them out of a total $710,255,098.36 across the full 20 players. These numbers are only going to increase with the amount of money being pushed into the sport in terms of TV deals and sponsorship. Every company in the world wants to see their name on the front of a football shirt, being blasted to millions around the globe watching on TV. It’s the ultimate in advertising. Some football fans will even pick who to buy from depending on who sponsors their team, or boycott their rival’s sponsors.

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