Messi first to break 100 million barrier

Lionel Messi last year became the first football player in history to have guaranteed earnings of over 100 million euros, a Football Leaks report revealed yesterday.

Messi, or rather his father, signed a four-year deal in June last year which featured two documents, a work contract and an image contract, both of which have been leaked.

However that contract was not the final copy and Messi later renegotiated the terms, penning a final deal on November 25 which would sensibly be even better.

The base figures of the contract signed in June were already staggering. On top of an enormous signing bonus of 63.5 million euros, Messi was to be paid 71,053,846 euros per season as wages.

For comparison, Cristiano Ronaldo’s new five-year contract, also penned in November 2017, raised his base salary to 50.5 million euros, significantly behind his Argentine rival.

Although the Argentine has always been faithful to the Blaugrana, he also has a 70 million euro loyalty bonus in his deal, which would be paid to him if he stayed at the Nou Camp till the conclusion of his contract in 2021.

Those two bonuses mean that his deal comes out to 417.5 million euros over four years, or 104.4 million euros per season.

To break the numbers down even further and just provide a glimpse of what the best player in the world earns, consider that he is earning 286,140 euros per day, or 11,922 euros per hour.

His daily wages dwarf most of the wages that the vast majority of footballers over the world earn in a month and in fact a calculation carried out in June showed that Messi’s wages accounted for 40 per cent of Barcelona’s payroll.

Interestingly it was reported that the contract also featured an ‘ultra-secret’ clause, not listed in the documents. According to sources at the Nou Camp, 23 million euros were included in Messi’s bonuses as a payment to ‘regularise’ his taxes.

If he plays 60 per cent of the games in the year, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner will get 1.9 million euros more. He will also get 2.7 million euros if Barcelona win La Liga and will receive a maximum of 12 million euros if they win the Champions League.

Taking all the bonuses into consideration, the superstar stands to make as much as 122.5 million euros per season, a sum that puts him over the budget of Olympique de Marseille, the fourth richest club in Ligue 1.