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The very best wages in Main League Soccer

The legendary former Juventus president Gianni Agnelli ran the Turin giants by the motto: “Poor footballers are actually overpaid. The great ones by no means earn sufficient.”

By anybody’s measure, Lionel Messi is an excellent footballer. Nonetheless, the World Cup-winning captain has chosen to play membership soccer exterior of Europe for the primary time in his senior profession, choosing MLS franchise Inter Miami when a possible return to Barcelona proved unfeasible.

Messi revealed that the monetary restrictions at Barcelona – citing potential participant gross sales or the discount of salaries – put him off. “I did not need to undergo all of that,” he stated.

There will probably be no such financial confines at Inter Miami, with the league and Apple TV working in conjunction to present Messi all of the monetary incentive he wanted to hitch MLS.

Right here is the Main League Soccer wage hierarchy Messi will probably be thrust into.



Base annual wage

Annual wage with assured bonuses

Xherdan Shaqiri

Chicago Hearth



Lorenzo Insigne

Toronto FC



Javier Hernandez

LA Galaxy



Federico Bernardeschi

Toronto FC



Sebastian Driussi

Austin FC



Hector Herrera

Houston Dynamo



Douglas Costa

LA Galaxy



Luiz Araujo

Atlanta United



Christian Benteke

D.C. United



Josef Martinez

Inter Miami



Lucas Zelarayan

Columbus Crew



Carles Gil

New England Revolution



Rodolfo Pizarro

Inter Miami



Carlos Vela




Nicolas Lodeiro

Seattle Sounders FC



Right as of 30 April (through MLS Gamers Affiliation)

Who’s the one participant within the historical past of the boys’s World Cup to attain a hat-trick solely made up of left-footed targets? No, it’s not Messi however Xherdan Shaqiri.

The Switzerland worldwide, previously of Bayern Munich, Inter and Liverpool amongst others, has been at Chicago Hearth since February 2022, raking in a league-high $8.15m (together with assured bonuses) every year. The Hearth have seen little return on their funding, posting a dropping report since signing the Energy Dice.

Toronto FC have additionally been burned by chasing after costly stars. European Championship winners Lorenzo Insigne and Federico Bernardeschi each moved from Serie A in the summertime of 2022, changing into two of the 4 highest-paid gamers within the division, however have created extra unfavorable headlines than optimistic ones, with rumours of a rift between the pair and supervisor Bob Bradley rife.

LA Galaxy’s Javier Hernandez no less than earned his eye-watering annual wage of $7.44m by scoring 35 targets between 2021 and 2022 – the second-highest tally in MLS throughout this timeframe. Nonetheless, Chicharito will probably be gathering the remainder of his wage packet from the therapy room after tearing his ACL at the beginning of June.

Josef Martinez has struggled to rediscover his scoring kind since struggling the same damage however is Inter Miami’s highest earner on $4.39m a yr – marginally lower than D.C. United’s Christian Benteke. Messi, nonetheless, is predicted to eclipse Martinez’s earnings by some margin.


In contrast to its European counterparts, MLS operates underneath a wage cap – which is widespread follow throughout different North American sports activities.

All MLS golf equipment, no matter income, are allowed to spend a most of $5.21m on their senior roster within the 2023 season, unfold throughout no less than 18 gamers and not more than 20.

Nonetheless, Messi would virtually actually arrive into the squad as considered one of Inter Miami’s three designated gamers (DPs) that fall exterior of the wage cap. Gregore, Rodolfo Pizarro and Leonardo Campana are at the moment labeled as DPs for Inter however considered one of that trio will certainly be bumped for the incoming Messi.

On this week’s version of Speaking Transfers, a part of the 90min podcast community, Scott Saunders is joined by Toby Cudworth and Graeme Bailey to debate Ange Postecoglou’s appointment at Spurs, Man Utd chasing Rasmus Hojlund, Harry Kane to Actual Madrid, Lionel Messi & extra!

If you cannot see this embed, click on right here to take heed to the podcast!



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