Who would want to run a football club? 

“Me!” you might say, but had you thought about how you were going to raise the money to pay your players? In this day and age?

And it’s not just football either: Sporting Intelligence recently published a list of the top salaries paid out by global sports teams and the NBA takes the cake when it comes to salary outlays.

Cash splashers Oklahoma City Thunder top the charts as they fork out an enormous £7,150,388 ($9,295,504) every year to their athletes – that’s £137,507 per week, while the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors are hot on their heels in second and third place, respectively. In fact, NBA teams make up seven of the top 10.

But we want to know about football, so let’s remove other sports and see what’s what.


WHICH FOOTBALL CLUB SPENDS THE MOST ON WAGES?


Guardiola, Messi, Neymar

Top 10 football clubs:

Team League Avg. Annual Wage Avg. Weekly Wage
Barcelona La Liga

£6,597,500 ($8,576,750)

£126,875 ($164,938)
Paris Saint-Germain Ligue 1 £6,472,355 ($8,414,061) £124,468 ($161,809)
Real Madrid La Liga £6,224,833 ($8,092,283) £119,708 ($155,621)
Manchester United Premier League £5,241,185 ($6,813,541) £100,792 ($131,030)
Manchester City Premier League £5,235,917 ($6,806,692) £100,691 ($130,898)
Bayern Munich Bundesliga £5,184,038 ($6,739,250) £99,693 ($129,601)
Juventus Serie A £4,853,467 ($6,309,507) £93,336 ($121,337)
Chelsea Premier League £4,451,200 ($5,786,560) £85,600 ($111,280)
Arsenal Premier League £4,037,222 ($5,248,389) £77,639 ($100,931)
Atletico Madrid La Liga £3,849,130 ($5,003,870) £74,022 ($96,228)

It’s surely of no shock that the clubs paying world class players such as Lionel Messi, Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo make up the top three, but what may interest people is the fact that Manchester United and Manchester City went from fourth and ninth in the overall table last year to 23rd and 24th, again with NBA sides brushing most of last year’s top-earning soccer teams aside.

Arsenal are an interesting inclusion in the top 10, too, with Arsene Wenger’s reputation as a master of the frugal arts seemingly wide of the mark when it comes to ensuring players are paid what they’re worth. 

Shanghai SIPG (£1,853,942/$2,410,125 per year) are the first football team outside of Europe to feature all the way down the overall list at 151, sandwiched between the Miami Dolphins and ‘Moneyball’ baseball team the Oakland Athletics.

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WHICH PREMIER LEAGUE CLUB SPENDS THE MOST ON WAGES?


Jose Mourinho Man Utd 2017

Top 10 Premier League clubs:

Team Avg. Annual Wage Avg. Weekly Wage
Manchester United £5,241,185 ($6,813,541) £100,792 ($131,030)
Manchester City £5,235,917 ($6,806,692) £100,691 ($130,898)
Chelsea £4,451,200 ($5,786,560) £85,600 ($111,280)
Arsenal £4,037,222 ($5,248,389) £77,639 ($100,931)
Liverpool £3,649,862 ($4,744,821) £70,190 ($91,247)
Tottenham £3,154,667 ($4,101,067 £60,667 ($78,867)
West Ham £2,936,870 ($3,817,930) £56,478 ($73,422)
Everton £2,806,207 ($3,648,069) £53,966 ($70,155)
Leicester City £2,499,120 ($3,248,856) £48,060 ($62,478)
Southampton £2,271,286 ($2,952,671) £43,679 ($56,782)

Manchester City may be dominating the Premier League, but their cross-town rivals pip them to the top spot when it comes to wages paid out. 

Chelsea, well known for their ability to spend big on proven talent, come in at number three, Arsenal at four and Liverpool (even with their Moneyball owners!) come in at five.

Tottenham, West Ham, Everton, Leicester and Southampton (in order) complete the top 10 English sides. 

Let’