In 2017, Paris Saint Germain (PSG) paid €222 million for the release of Neymar Jr. from Barcelona to PSG making it a Guinness world record, and Critiano Ronaldo signing with Al-Nassr FC on December 30, 2022 with a salary to be close to €200 million per year with commercial deals included. But there is a new deal in talks with the recent World Cup winner, Lionel Messi. Due to recent incidents with PSG he is set to leave at the end of the season, now the recent La Liga winners FC Barcelona are in talks to get Messi back to the club, but they have little money to spend unless they decide to sell a few of their own players to make a substantial bid. But they aren’t the only ones interested in Lionel Messi, Al Hilal (Al-Nassir’s rival) sent an official bid to Messi with a salary of €400 million a year according to Fabrizio Romano. But there has been no official signing yet.
Playing the sport you love while making a lot of money is a dream for most athletes. Owners of pro clubs and teams always want the best players, staff, and coaches they can get to make their team the best they can be even if that means they have to spend a lot of money to do so. In soccer, onepercent of soccer players make it pro, and if they are good enough they can get scouted. Then, they have multiple other steps to go through to make it on the team. At the end, if the player is good enough the club will sign a contract with the player, saying what year the contract ends and how much the club will pay them. Often when clubs see players from other pro teams and they want the athlete to play for them, the club will bid an amount of money at a certain time of the year so they can try to sign the player either for the rest of the season or the next season.
To put things on a scale of how much the top athletes get paid around the world in all sports, Forbes magazine creates a top ten list to calculate what players are getting paid the most on and off the field. According to Forbes the top three highest paid athletes in the world are soccer players, and first is Cristiano Ronaldo making $136 million whohe gets paid $46 million on the field (meaning get paid by your team, and off the field he makes $90 million meaning when he’s not getting paid by his club he’s getting paid by sponsorships and etc.) Following Ronaldo is Lionel Messi with a total of $130 million, and his Paris Saint Germain teammate is number three Kylian Mbappé making $120 million. The seven following athletes are LeBron James ($119.5 million), Canelo Álvarez ($110 million), Dustin Johnson ($107 million), Phil Mickelson ($106 million), Stephen Curry ($100.4 million), Roger Federer ($95.1 million), and Kevin Durant ($89.1million). In the last seven years there have always been at least two soccer players onthe top three highest paid athletes in the world chart. This shows that the best of the best soccer players can make a lot of money for many seasons.
There has been a lot of trouble when soccer and money mix, especially regarding the amount of money clubs spend on players, but entering into a new era of sports and many new club owners there will probably be new money, and new opportunities for new deals and signings that will break new records.
The image shows the iconic Camp Nou, the arena FC Barcelona plays and where Messi has spent most of his career playing soccer [Photo courtesy: Micheal Lee of Unsplash]