The current list of the richest footballers in Africa is very different from what it was a few years ago; this is because a lot of the big stars in African football have retired en masse. But there is never a vacuum; as one generation of stars steps down, there is another generation of big stars ready to fill the space they left behind.
Football is well acknowledged as the most popular sport in the world. Millions of people play and follow the game regularly and when the football world cup comes around every four years, over a billion viewers tune in to watch. This shows how massive this sport is. The players obviously enjoy fat pay due to the massive following the game enjoys.
Currently, Africa now has many certified stars playing at the very highest level of the game and earning huge sums in the process. Africa’s richest football stars have now built up their own brand identity; they now have endorsement deals just like their biggest European counterparts, even though still smaller when the figures are compared.
Top 10 Richest Footballers In Africa
1. John Mikel Obi
Net worth: $30 Million
Mikel Obi is in and out of football contracts; he is in the twilight of what has been an illustrious career. He spent 11 years with Chelsea Football Club; winning almost everything available for winning, and earning good money for his efforts.
He is a contemporary with Lionel Messi, against whom he played in the FIFA U 17 Championship in the Netherlands.
John Mikel Obi is one of the richest footballers to have ever come out of Africa. While at Chelsea he earned an average of 85,000 pounds a week for 11 years. After he called time with Chelsea he went to China, and teamed up with Tianjin TEDA. The move was reported to pay 140,000 pounds per week, and lasted for about 2 years.
2. Mohammed Salah
Net worth: $25.7 Million
Mohammed Salah is the biggest African football star by fame and by money. Just imagine; he is the biggest star at Liverpool- one of the biggest and most prestigious football clubs in England and the world. Mo Salah has earned his money; he has consistently been the highest scorer in the league for a couple of seasons and has also helped the team get their hands on silverware.
Mo Salah is one of the highest-paid African footballers in the world; he earns around 240,000 pounds a week and is set to sign another deal that will see him making about 420,000 pounds every week. Mohammed Salah even has endorsement deals with Nike and Pepsi; although the exact amount he makes from those deals is just a matter of speculation.
However, having reached superstar status; it is clear that this man is going to hold the record for the richest African footballer for quite some time.
3. Odion Ighalo
Net worth: $23 Million
Odion Ighalo is a Nigerian football star who has journeyed the world playing football and making money. He has played for Lyn, Udinese, Granada, Watford, Changchun Yatai, Shanghai Shenhua, Manchester United, Al Shabab, and now Al-Hilal.
Odion Ighalo earns about 130,000 pounds a week currently. But when he played in china he made about 300,000 pounds a week in 3 years.
4. Wilfried Zaha
Net worth: $20 Million
Dazet Wilfried Armel Zaha was born on the 10th of November 1992, and he only recently switched his nationality to enable him to play for the Ivory Coast.
Nevertheless, he has always been African at heart. Make no mistake, he is one of the most skillful players in the English Premier League; the number of fouls he gets per game proves how hard he is to stop.
He is one of the highest earners at Crystal Palace Football Club; he carries the team to victory most times which is why he fully deserves the 130,000 pounds per week wages he receives at the club. His salary amounts to about 6 million per year, and he is estimated to be worth around 20 million dollars.
5. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
Net Worth: $18 Million
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is a player of proven quality. A man needs to know his worth to be able to walk away from Arsenal, and away from any toxic environment. He is one of the stars of African Football; his many accolades prove that he has earned the right to make the kind of money he makes from the sport.
Pierre -Emerick Aubameyang received 250,000 pounds a week at Arsenal before falling out with coach Mikel Arteta due to personal issues, and then having to leave the club. He went to Barcelona, and immediately hit the ground running. He has supplied the goals that secured second place; and guaranteed the team Champions League football.
Aubameyang has sponsorship deals with Nike. He helps them promote their boots; particularly the Nike Hypervenm Phantom III DF boots.
6. Kalidou Koulibaly
Net Worth: $17 Million
Napoli once turned down a 75 Million Dollar offer from Manchester United for Kalidou Koulibaly. The club certainly knows the value of the Senegalese international; which is why they pay him 175,000 Euros every week.
He is one of the most coveted defenders in the world at the moment; there are few defenders in Europe that can match him for strength, defensive capabilities, and his prowess in the air.
Having just won the Afcon; his price tag has risen higher- anyone looking to secure his services will have to pay very good money.
He is estimated to be worth around 18 Million Dollars.
7. Sadio Mané
Net Worth: $15 Million
Sadio Mané should be far richer than this- he gives so much away in his charitable endeavors. Right now he is one of the main pillars of the Liverpool side that has been a contender for every trophy available. Sadio Mane has suddenly started to receive the recognition that is due to his talent; he has even been linked to the Balon d’ or.
Liverpool pays the forward 100,000 pounds a week at the moment, but his quality has attracted interest from all over Europe. If he stays at Liverpool he is going to earn a lot more than this stated figure, and if he goes to another club he will not go cheaply.
Mané has built schools, hospitals, and many other facilities in his native Senegal. He is a philanthropist who is not interested in piling up money, but in touching lives.
8. Riyad Mahrez
Net Worth: $ 12 Million
Riyad Karim Mahrez was born on the 21st of February 1991. He is one of the most talented players in Africa; although one level short of Salah’s greatness.
He is an Algerian, and has already led his country to honors. He has flourished under Pep Guardiola at Manchester City, but his perhaps the highlight of his career was winning the English Premier League with Leicester City in 2015.
Since joining Manchester City in 2018 for 60 million pounds, he has gone on to win several laurels proving his status as a true footballer, and as a winner. He earns about 160,000 pounds a week and still has the potential to earn more.
9. Sulley Ali Muntari
Net Worth: $5 Million
Sulley Ali Muntari does not get the recognition he deserves, and that is a shame. The Ghanaian has had a stellar career playing for several clubs such as Deportivo La Coruna in Spain, Portsmouth, and AC Milan.
He currently plays for Accra Hearts of Oak in the Ghanaian top league- although he doesn’t play there for the money, but for love for his country and for the game.
He earned good money and won a few laurels during his time; he is estimated to be worth about $5 Million.
10. Kelechi Iheanacho
Net worth: $3.6 million
Kelechi Iheanacho plays as a forward for Leicester City Football Club. He actually started his career at Manchester City in 2015, but after a few years made the switch to Leicester City for about £25 million.
He is one of the rising stars of the game; he has won 3 major honors and is certainly hungry for more. He has picked form at the right time. He earns $68,000 weekly but has proven to be a goal scorer and a team player he is set to earn more.
The richest footballers in Africa are based all over Europe, but most of them play in England where the most money is. Interestingly, African footballers are now starting to get endorsement deals from top brands, meaning that they now have a level playing ground with their counterparts from other continents; and will continue to earn more.
These superstars earned their fortune thrilling fans all over the world with their amazing soccer skills, stamina, and strength associated with African footballers. They were able to change their lives doing what they love and this shows the power of sports in the development of a country and by extension, a continent. It is hoped that more attention will be paid to sports development in Africa by relevant authorities in the near future.