Time and time again, we’ve seen just how crazy some professional sports team owners can be. More often than not, we associate this behavior with questionable dance moves and an affinity for getting fined for constantly questioning the league. Yet, truth be told, a better way to calculate the sanity of these individuals would be to look at the ungodly amount of money they pay their players.
Now that’s ludicrous. And when it comes to soccer, an obscene salary is only part of the craziness. We’ve always known that soccer players get paid handsomely for their services both on and off the field. But it takes actually seeing the numbers for this fact to truly set in. And thanks to the efforts of those fine folks at Forbes, who seriously put in the legwork, our eyes are wide open:
To compile our list of the world’s highest-earnings soccer players, we looked through team filings and spoke with players’ agents, talent agencies, commercial sponsors and soccer experts in the U.S. and Europe. All figures are in U.S. $ and include soccer salaries, bonuses, and endorsements. Transfer fees are excluded. Earnings and performance metrics are for the 2015 calendar year.
As you probably guessed, not all soccer players’ bank accounts are created equal. With that in mind, here’s a look at the 10 highest-paid soccer players in the world in 2016.