Famous French news outlet L’Equipe took stock of the highest earners in Ligue 1, showing just how ‘balanced’ the league is.
A quick look at the list of the ten best-paid players in the French elite division is enough to grasp the level of Paris Saint-Germain’s dominance under Qatari ownership.
Since the petrodollars first flew into PSG’s coffers in 2011, Les Parisiens have gone from a mediocre club into one of the most influential in Europe, let alone France.
Before the Qatari owners started pouring hundreds of millions into the transfer market, PSG had only two top-flight titles to their name and couldn’t cope with other French heavyweights.
Bordeaux, Lyon, Marseille and Saint-Etienne dominated top-flight proceedings for decades, but a formidable cash influx over the past 12 years has turned PSG into a domestic superpower.
As the joint-most successful club in Ligue 1, Saint-Etienne are no longer part of the elite, with the same going for the six-time champions Bordeaux, as both clubs currently languish in the second tier.
By contrast, Christophe Galtier’s side are on the verge of landing a record-breaking 11th Ligue 1 crown that would be their ninth in the last 11 years, testifying to their unparalleled dominance of French football.
Les Parisiens have had some of the world’s best-paid players on their payroll, but it seems they’ve taken their exorbitant overspending to a new level these past couple of years.
You don’t have to look beyond Ligue 1’s top-ten highest earners to understand why PSG have no match in the domestic championship.
All ten best-paid players in the league ply their trade at the Parc des Princes, with superstar forward Kylian Mbappe topping the list with an extravagant monthly salary of €6,000,000.
There’s no dispute the quicksilver forward deserves every penny, but compared to Monaco’s top-tier earner Wissam Ben Yedder (€650,000-a-week), it feels like they’re playing a different sport.
Ben Yedder boasts the most lucrative contract in Ligue 1 outside the Parc des Princes, highlighting the financial monopoly established by PSG over the past decade.
Paris’ bit-part players like Nordi Mukiele (€700,000-a-month) and Juan Bernat (€730,000-a-month) have comfortably made the top-ten list despite only occasionally featuring for Galtier’s team.
And even though Marseille have spent most of the 2022/23 season challenging PSG for the title, their highest earner Jordan Veretout (€550,000-a-month) is taking home a portion of Mbappe’s weekly wages.
Mbappe’s attacking colleague Neymar earns a tasty-looking monthly salary of around €3,675,000 despite regularly ‘picking up injuries’ around the festive period in Rio de Janeiro and his sister’s birthday.
The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi sits third in this list with monthly wages of €3,375,000, but given his penchant for lucrative add-ons, it’s hard to tell how much he truly earns.
Lyon captain and former Arsenal star Alexandre Lacazette leads the way at the Groupama Stadium with €400,000 per month, which explains why Les Gones are no longer competitive in the top-four race.
So much for equality and Financial Fair Play.
And if you’re still interested in learning the remainder of Ligue 1’s top-ten earners, make sure to check out the list below.
- Kylian Mbappe (PSG) – €6,000,000
- Neymar (PSG) – €3,675,000
- Lionel Messi (PSG) – €3,375,000
- Marquinhos (PSG) – €1,200,000
- Marco Verratti (PSG) – €1,200,000
- Achraf Hakimi (PSG) – €1,083,000
- Gianluigi Donnarumma (PSG) – €916,000
- Sergio Ramos (PSG) – €791,000
- Juan Bernat (PSG) – €730,000
- Nordi Mukiele (PSG) – €700,000
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