The transfer of Argentine footballer Ezequiel Lavezzi from Paris Saint Germain (PSG) to Chinese Super League Hebei China Fortune in 2016 was not something that gathered a lot of media attention. The 32-year-old forward was struggling to keep his place in the PSG squad and although he was offered big money, it wasn’t anything new for the Chinese clubs who are known for their lavish spending.
According to Football Leaks, Ezequiel Lavezzi is the highest-paid footballer in the world—£798,000 a week 👀 pic.twitter.com/ZLeKoS84wh— B/R Football (@brfootball) May 12, 2017
However, according to the book ‘Football Leaks: The Dirty Business of Football’, Lavezzi’s actual wage is £798,000 (Rs 6.6 crore) per week and that makes him the costliest footballer in the world. He surpassed his compatriot Carlos Tevez by a huge margin and his income is almost double of what Cristiano Ronaldo earns at Real Madrid.
Here’s a look at the other footballers with the highest salaries in world football -
Carlos Tevez (Shanghai Shenhua)
The former Manchester United and Manchester City striker became the highest paid footballer in the world when he signed for Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua at the start of the 2017 season. Tevez has played for teams from all around the world and with a weekly wage of £634,615 (Rs 5.2 crore) per week, he became the gold standard as far as wages are considered in the footballing world.
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
The Real Madrid superstar is considered to be one of the best footballers in the world and in 2016, he achieved the rare distinction of winning the European Championships and the Champions League in the same year. Ronaldo currently earns £424,615 (Rs 3.5 crore) per week and thanks to his exorbitant wage, he is currently the highest paid footballer outside the Chinese Super League.
Oscar (Shanghai SIPG)
The Chinese transfer market is known for offering lavish prices for international stars and it was no surprise that Oscar received a huge raise in his contract when he joined Shanghai SIPG in 2017. The former Chelsea midfielder earns around £400,000 (Rs 3.3 crore) per week and that makes him the third highest paid footballer in the Chinese Super League right now.
Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona)
The maverick from Argentina may have a lot of records to his name, but Messi is currently the fifth highest paid footballer in the world. The FC Barcelona forward pockets around £362,480 (Rs 3.1 crore) per week, but there have been reports in international media that the new contract the Catalan club is offering can make him the highest paid footballer in the world.