Mon 23 August 2021 | 13:30

Highest Paid Ligue 1 Players in 2021

Ligue 1 has become more star studded than ever and that much star power is usually accompanied by some hefty wages. So let us take a look at some of the highest paid Ligue 1 players in 2021:

Football has come to a point that the amount of money being spent in the sport’s elite leagues, namely the top 5 European Leagues, is being increased almost astronomically season after season. even the horrible financial effects of the pandemic haven’t been able to slow some of the top clubs in Europe from spending, one of which is Ligue 1’s very own PSG. Owned by Qatar Sports Investments and led by the president Nasser Al-Khelaifi the Parisian club’s resources seem near endless.

This summer PSG went on a spending spree of signing players like Hakimi, Wijnaldum, Donnarumma, Ramos and least but not certainly the least, the great Leo Messi. While 3 of these were free transfers, PSG made a huge investment in these players signing-on fees and yearly wages. Keep in mind that all this is happening while Ligue 1 clubs are in serious financial jeopardy because of the TV rights deal they signed a couple of years ago has failed due to the pandemic. Now that we’ve given you a bit of context on Ligue 1’s financial situation, let’s take a look at the

highest paid Ligue 1 players in 2021


Top 10 Highest-Paid Ligue 1 Football Players

the thing about the top 10 highest-paid Ligue 1 football players that is both worrying as well as being sort of funny is that all of these 10 players are from PSG. There are players from Monaco like Wissam Ben Yeder that crack the top 20 but with over 300 million Euros paid in yearly wages, PSG is leagues above its French competitors. Let’s start with No.10 on this list, Presnel Kimpembe:

10. Presnel Kimpembe

The World Cup winning center back who is also PSG’s vice captain is the first player on our list. The 26-year-old defender is the product of PSG’s own academy and made his debut for the Parisian club back in the 2014-15 season. but it wasn’t until the 2016-17 season that he started appearing regularly for PSG and soon after he became a big part of the French national team too, helping the Les Bleus win the 2018 World Cup while simultaneously winning titles left right and center with PSG.

Kimpembe, who can play at several positions including being a center back in either a 2-man defense or 3-man defense or even a left back, has become a staple of PSG’s success in the past 5 years. he’s even replaced the likes of Clement Lenglet and Samuel Umtiti in the French national team to become one of the highest-rated defenders in world football. and judging by his 4 Ligue 1, 4 Coupe de France and 4 Coupe de la Ligue that he has won with PSG he totally deserves to be counted amongst the best.

Obviously since Presnel Kimpembe has been at PSG from the start of his career, he has had several contracts at the club. but the latest contract that the French defender signed with PSG in 2020 which makes him one of the highest paid players in Ligue 1, is worth around


a year. Which makes his weekly wages around


. There are certainly a few defenders who earn more than Kimpembe but he is leagues above his compatriots.

Kimpembe has been able to launch his own brand of clothing with the money he is making through football called PK3 Paris which shows his ambitions lie not only on the pitch but also in business too.

9. Gianluigi Donnarumma

It seemed like that every time a transfer window came around, there were talk of Gianluigi Donnarumma, who is considered to be a generational goalkeeping talent, leaving AC Milan to join certain clubs like Juventus for a hefty fee. But in the end, AC Milan lost their goalkeeper to PSG after the Donnarumma refused to accept a new deal presented by

AC Milan

. The deal that PSG offered the newly crowned Euro 2020 winner, was obviously huge but what baffled most football fans was the fact that Donnarumma’s addition took PSG’s number of goalkeepers to 9!

There were also questions about Donnarumma’s ambitions as a goalkeeper as he seemingly left his place as a first team player in AC Milan only to join PSG to possibly become a bit-part player. But when you inspect the situation a bit more closely and take into account the fact that Donnarumma is still only 22, despite him having near 300 games under his belt, you’ll soon realize that he is at PSG for the long run and will probably take his time in replacing Keylor Navas, who despite being a great keeper is likely to be at the end of his career at a top club like PSG.

Nonetheless, the most baffling part of Donnarumma’s contract at PSG is yet to come and that is the fact that the Italian earns the same amount of money as Keylor Navas which is around


in yearly wages. This would be round about


in weekly wages which makes both players 2 of the

highest paid Ligue 1 players in 2021

. This not only makes Donnarumma a highest earner in Ligue 1 but also one of the highest paid keepers in European football.

8. Keylor Navas

South America knows how to produce top quality goalkeepers and Keylor Navas isn’t an exception. An absolute legend among his countrymen as well as

Real Madrid

fans, Navas was very much one of the pillars in that Real Madrid team that won 3 consecutive Champions League titles by constantly setting records in the competition for most clean sheets in a single season. however, after the arrival of Thibaut Courtois, the Costa Rican goalkeeper was pushed out of the squad and decided to choose PSG as his next destination.

PSG offered Navas a deal that made him one of the top 10 highest-paid Ligue 1 football players at the time and even now with all these expensive signings arriving at PSG, Navas is still No.8 amongst the

highest paid players in Ligue 1

. His time at France has been successful as PSG was able to win the Ligue 1 in Navas’ debut season. the same season they were able to reach the 2019-20 Champions Leaue final, which they lost to Bayern Munich but they’re hopeful to go for the title this season too and with the addition of Ramos and Messi are clearly the favorites to do so.

As we said earlier, Navas’ contract is the same as Donnarumma but runs till the end of 2024. In fact, he penned his latest contract extension at the end of April this year. Just like Donnarumma, Keylor Navas earns around


a year with roughly


in weekly wages. He is expected to slowly give his place to the much younger Donnarumma but like any champion, of which Navas is definitely one, he is unlikely to give up his place without a fight.

7. Angel Di Maria

We have another former Real Madrid player as the No.7 amongst the highest paid Ligue 1 players in 2021 and that is Angel Di Maria, who is enjoying his seventh season at PSG after joining them from

Manchester United

in 2016 in what was one of the

most expensive transfers in Ligue 1 history

. But Di Maria’s form in recent seasons has shown that the Argentinian has more than proved he was worth the money PSG paid up for him and worthy of his considerable salary.

The Argentine midfielder has helped PSG win 4 Ligue 1, 4 Coupe de France, 4 Coupe de la Ligue as well as playing a big part in the Parisian club reaching the 2020 Champions League final. His presence alongside a host of other Argentinian players and their Argentine manager, Mauricio Pochetino, may have also been a key factor in Lionel Messi choosing PSG as his next destination. Di Maria and Messi also were able to finally lead Argentina to a Copa America title this summer.

Di Maria is another PSG player who extended his contract earlier this year. His new contract which runs till the end of this season with option for another year, sees the Argentine earn


a year or almost


a week. A seriously hefty fee which seems reasonable considering the caliber of player Di Maria actually is. At 33 years of age, this will probably be Di Maria’s last big contract before he hangs his boots. But for now, Angel Di Maria is one of the highest paid Ligue 1 players in 2021. 

6. Marco Verratti

The next one to appear on our list of highest paid Ligue 1 players in 2021 is the recently-crowned European Champion, Marco Verratti. A record 7-time Ligue 1 winner who could very much add to his tally this season and be the most decorated player in Ligue 1 history. With him having won 27 pieces of silverware during his time with PSG, Verratti is certainly one of the 

best players that the French league

 and PSG have seen in its history and the brilliant Italian regista is not even 30 yet.

Add to his talent and pedigree at PSG, the fact that Marco Verratti is represented by a super agent like Mino Raiola and it would be certainly a guarantee that Verratti will be paid his weight in gold wherever he goes. The only problem that the Italian has had during his career is the fact that he is seriously injury prone which could be a problem for PSG because there isn’t really a player of his quality that could replace him and so much of PSG’s tactics depend on Verratti to work.

Nonetheless, PSG owners know that in order to reach their high ambitions of winning the Champions League they need to keep hold of players like Marco Verratti which si why he’s been constantly awarded with improved contracts since arriving at the club in 2012. His current contract which is likely to be renewed soon was penned in 2019 and it sees the Italian midfielder make slightly more than Angel Di Maria with 


 in yearly wages which roughly equals 


 a week which is significantly higher than most of Ligue 1 players salaries.

5. Marquinhos

PSG’s Brazilian captain and the beating heart of its defense, Marquinhos, comes at the mid-way point of the list of

top 10 highest-paid Ligue 1 football players

. After only spending a season with the Italian side, AS Roma, then the 19 year old defender joined PSG in 2013, in what was one of the highest ever fees paid for a player under the age of 20 (€31.4 million). The move has worked out pretty well for all the parties involved and Marguinhos has gone on to win 23 trophies with PSG, becoming one of the best defenders of his generation.

Capable of playing both in midfield and defense, Marquinhos’ brilliant performances alongside his leadership qualities and consistency on the pitch has led to him becoming the club’s captain after Tiago Silva’s departure last season. aside from his defensive contributions, Marquinhos is known to score a goal or two from time to time as well. In fact, his two goals in the quarterfinals and the semi-finals of 2019-20 Champions League season against


and Leipzig, was what ultimately led PSG to their first ever Champions League final.

Now with Leo Messi and Sergio Ramos at PSG, Marquinhos’ job seems to be more important than ever to bring unity to such a star-studded squad. and as far as his salary goes, the Brazilian is being more than compensated with a yearly salary of


that roughly equals


in weekly wages.

4. Sergio Ramos

This time last year, if you would’ve told someone that Sergio Ramos and Lionel Messi would both leave their respective clubs to join PSG and be teammates, that someone would’ve probably told you to go to a doctor and check for concussions because that would be utter nonsense. But such is the world we’re living right now as club captains of both Real Madrid and Barcelona have joined forces in Paris to make PSG a European superpower and have become two of the highest paid Ligue 1 players in 2021 in the process.

In terms of what he has done on the pitch, there are only a handful of players in history that could match the mighty Sergio Ramos’ achievements as a footballer. Suffice it to say that Sergio Ramos is the perfect addition to an already talented PSG side that will make them a force to be reckoned with. His leadership, defensive abilities and even his goals will make PSG a stronger team both when they defend or going forward. In fact, his acquisition just shows that PSG owners have a singular vision and will do everything to make that happen.

That includes paying a hefty sum for a 35 year old defender both in signing fees and his wages. Sergio Ramos’ weekly salary is somewhere around


which is frightening compared to the usual Ligue 1 players salaries but if there is a 35 year old player who has earned this kind of salary, its Sergio Ramos. Ramos’ yearly wages sum up to around


which makes him the 4th highest paid Ligue 1 players in 2021.

3. Kylian Mbappe

By the age of 17, he was setting the Champions League on fire with his performances and now at 22, he is already a World Champion and 4-time Ligue 1 winner. A true generational talent, Kylian Mbappe has already achieved what many could only dream of and by the looks of it, he isn’t slowing down any time soon. Born and raised in Paris, Mbappe started his career at Monaco and won the

Ligue 1

at 17 but he soon made his way back to Paris to join PSG in 2017, in what was the 2nd most expensive transfer in the history of football.

But PSG and many of Mbappe’s suitors back then knew that the wonderkid was worth every penny of the €180 that PSG paid Monaco and he is proven that since then. Since his arrival at Paris, Mbappe has consistently improved his numbers when it comes to goal scoring and he is already the club’s 3rd best goal scorer behind Edinson Cavani and Zlatan Ibrahimovic. In fact, Mbappe could very well overtake Zlatan this season even if he scores half the amount of goals he did last season.

But Mbappe’s future at PSG is very much in doubt as he very much likes to play for Real Madrid and has never shied away from declaring his love for the club. a love that is mutual as Madrid’s president Florentino Perez is obsessed with bringing the French talisman to Santiago Bernabeu so much so that many claim that, Real Madrid’s lack of investments in new players recently has been in parts to help fund the imminent arrival of Kylian Mbappe to the club. but here is the thing, Mbappe’s latest contract with PSG which he signed in 2018, runs out at the end of this current season and he will be able to leave the club for free.

As of now Kylian Mbappe who is one of the highest paid Ligue 1 players in 2021, earns around


in yearly wages and he is set to earn a lot more than that if he goes to Real Madrid or even if he decides to stay at PSG and accept their current contract offer to extend with the club. It seems that at least for now, Mbappe has chosen to see out his contract and find out what impact Leo Messi’s stay will have at the club. if they manage to win the Champions League, there is a strong chance that Mbappe will extend his contract with PSG and remain as one of the

highest earner in Ligue 1


2. Neymar Jr. 

We have two former Barcelona legends as the final two highest paid players in Ligue 1, Leo Messi and Neymar Jr. let’s start with Neymar, who arrived at PSG from Barcelona in 2017 in a controversial transfer saga that made the Brazilian superstar become the most expensive player ever in a deal worth a whopping €222 million, which was Neymar’s release clause at Barcelona at the time. The deal had major repercussions for the world of football in terms of transfer fee inflations but it also made PSG’s ambition clear to everyone, that they wanted one thing and one thing only, which is the Champions League.

Now obviously,


himself was more than satisfied with the wages PSG offered him upon his arrival. The initial contract was reported to be somewhere around the €30million in yearly wages which was significantly higher than all of the

Ligue 1 players salaries

as well as his salary when he was at


. The contract was supposed to run for 5 seasons and saw various bonuses included in the deal.

However, Neymar has since renewed his contract with PSG earlier this year in a much better contract that runs till the summer of 2025 with another optional year if Neymar himself decides to stay. This contract sees the Brazilian earn somewhere around


in yearly wages (almost


a week!) in addition to various bonuses, including a very specific huge bonus payment in case PSG ever won a Champions League with Neymar.

With Neymar already being 29 and his contract running till 2025, it seems that he has dedicated the rest of his career to PSG and this will most likely be his last big contract. Now that Leo messi is once again with him, he must finally deliver that elusive Champions League title to PSG!

1. Lionel Messi

Nothing against any PSG fan or the club itself but seeing Lionel Messi in any shirt other than that of Barcelona and Argentina, will be something that no football fan will ever get used to. Messi and Barcelona was a match made in footballing heaven. the Argentine footballing genius, played for Blaugrana from age of 13 until he was 34. A 21-year love affair that sadly came to an end this summer because of Barcelona’s financial troubles which has left the club 1.6 billion Euros in debt.

During those 21 years, Messi won an unprecedented 38 trophies, 35 of which was with Barcelona. He made Barcelona a force to be reckoned with and shattered every record there was in La Liga. But most football fans know that already. However, the focus of this article is the circumstances that saw Leo Messi arrive at PSG this summer. While the exact details of Barcelona’s financial troubles will most likely be published in the years to come, the thing that made Messi’s new deal at Barcelona impossible is quite straightforward.

Barcelona and any other team in La Liga aren’t allowed to dedicate more than 70% of their income to player wages. Even without Leo Messi on the books, Barcelona was spending 95% of their income on wages which is impossible. So a new deal for Leo Messi would’ve been absolutely impossible for Barcelona which is why Messi had to leave his Barca with tears.

But in this COVID-hit market there were only a handful of clubs who could actually afford Leo Messi’s wages. And with most of those clubs engaged in high profile transfers of their own, PSG saw his chance and immediately took it, bringing the greatest of all time to Paris. There are a few numbers being talked about regarding Messi’s deal with PSG but the deal is believed to be around


in yearly wages plus a huge bonus if PSG manage to win the Champions League. this makes him the No.1

highest paid Ligue 1 players in 2021

which is totally what the Alien deserves.

In hindsight though, PSG seems to be the perfect club for Lionel Messi as he is surrounded by his compatriots and former Barcelona teammates and they have built a super squad capable of challenging for any title. as neutrals who aren’t fans of Barcelona, we’re all excited to see Messi tear it up in Ligue!



source: SportMob

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