Find out which European clubs spend the most on player salaries this season.
As the 2023-24 football season kicks off, the landscape of European football reveals intriguing insights into the financial powerhouses of the sport.
Premier League clubs have long been known for their lavish spending on player wages, but in this season, Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) and Real Madrid are sitting at the summit of the wage bill hierarchy.
Despite notable departures, including the likes of Lionel Messi, Sergio Ramos, and Neymar, PSG continues to reign supreme in terms of annual wage expenditure.
The Ligue 1 champions outspend their European counterparts by a staggering €100 million, a significant chunk of which finds its way into the pocket of Kylian Mbappe. The French superstar claims the title of Europe’s highest-paid player, commanding an annual salary of €72 million.
Mbappe’s earnings bring into focus the significant wage disparity within Ligue 1. His individual salary surpasses the collective wage bills of seven of the 20 clubs in the league.
On the other end of the spectrum, clubs like Toulouse, Clermont Foot, and Le Havre in Ligue 1, and newcomers to the major leagues like Luton Town, Frosinone, and Heidenheim, have the lowest wage bills in their respective leagues.
In Europe’s top 50 wage bill rankings, Premier League clubs make a significant impact, accounting for eight of the top 14 spots.
Manchester United and Manchester City stand out as the English giants, with Barcelona not too far behind. Bayern Munich has risen to third place in the rankings following their signing of Harry Kane, making him the highest-paid player in Bundesliga history.
Aston Villa and Newcastle United have caused a stir by outspending traditional European powerhouses such as Borussia Dortmund, AC Milan, and Inter Milan on player wages.
Here’s the full breakdown of the annual wage bills of the top 50 European clubs in the five major leagues for the 2023-24 season, based on estimates from FBref.