Mahrez dethrones Salah as Africa’s highest paid footballer… See full list

 Mahrez dethrones Salah as Africa’s highest paid footballer… See full list

Africa has produced some of the world’s bests in football and with that comes an increase in wealth.

These footballers are among the wealthiest football players in the world because they have not only succeeded on the pitch but have landed big contracts and sponsorship deals.

Their talents, diligence, and commitment to the round leather sports have allowed them to succeed financially and equally act as role models for aspiring players around the continent of Africa and the whole world.

The world’s top paid African football players are listed below:

1. Riyad Mahrez (Al Ahli – $58 million) 

Before moving to Saudi Arabia in the summer, Riyad Mahrez played a significant role in Leicester City’s miracle Premier league win in 2016 and Manchester City’s recently success.

Riyad Mahrez

The Algerian captain joined the Saudi Pro League’s Al Alhi, earning more than three times as much as he did at Manchester City. With an annual salary of about $56 million, he is the highest-paid African football player in the world 2024.

No African football player in the world makes more money on the pitch as of 2024 than Mahrez. Mahrez reportedly had endorsement agreements with Pepsi and Nike off the pitch.

2. Mohamed Salah (Liverpool — $53 million)

According to Forbes’ list of the highest-paid football players in 2023, Mohamed Salah was the highest-paid African player. But in terms of income in 2024, the Egyptian king still lags behind Riyad Mahrez.

Mo Salah

In addition to becoming a legendary player for Liverpool, Salah almost made history by being the most expensive player in the Saudi Pro League when Al Ittihad reportedly made an astounding $190 million transfer fee offer, which Liverpool turned down on deadline day.

Outside football field, Mo Salah has endorsement partnerships with Pepsi, Vodafone, Oppo, and Adidas in addition to his signature boot.

3. Sadio Mané (Al Nassr — $52 million)

With 37 goals in his career, Mané is now the most prolific Senegalese football player in history. Mané departed the Premier League to try his luck in the Bundesliga with German powerhouse Bayern Munich following a fruitful stint with Liverpool.

But following a challenging season in Germany, the charitable winger inked a huge contract to play for Al Nassr of the Saudi Pro League.

Sadio Mané

With that agreement, he was the highest-paid African football player in history in terms of on-field compensation and rank among the highest-paid players globally in 2023.

Mané has several profitable off-field partnerships, the most notable of which is with well-known clothing company New Balance.

4. Kalidou Koulibaly (Al Hilal — $26 million)

Senegalese defender Kalidou Koulibaly is admired for his remarkable power, quickness, and game reading skills. Koulibaly is among the top African defenders in the world.

Before joining Chelsea, Koulibaly spent more than seven years as a player for Serie A team, Napoli. The 32-year-old defender makes almost $26 million a year at Al Hilal. He acknowledged he was unable to refuse a life-altering transfer to Saudi Arabia during the 2023 summer transfer window when he sealed the deal with Al Hilal from Chelsea.


Koulibaly continues to be one of the most popular Senegalese football players on social media off the pitch.

5. Achraf Hakimi (Paris Saint Germain — $20 million)

Most people agree that Achraf Hakimi is one of the most marketable African footballers in the world is.

The Paris Saint-Germain star man gained recognition for his stand out performance with Morocco durintue 2022 World Cup. He contributes both offensively and defensively. Hakimi has played for elite teams including Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, and Inter Milan and he is one of the most paid Moroccan football players with about $20 million.

Achraf Hakimi

In addition to being one of the most active football players on social media off the pitch, the 25-year-old is presently sponsored by Adidas UK. He has previously held endorsement deals with major brands including Pepsi, Huawei, and Nike.

6. Victor Osimhen (Napoli — $20 million)

Late last year, the 25-year-old striker Nigeria striker signed a ground-breaking contract with the Napoli. Through the agreement, he rose to become the highest-paid African player in Serie A history.

Osimhen is Africa’s world most valuable footballer and current Confederation of African Football (CAF) men’s player of the year. His new contract with Napoli of $40 million by 2026 is the second largest deal ever signed by a Nigerian footballer.

Victor Osimhen at CAF 2023 awards

He has numerous investments off the pitch, the most of them are not made public.

7. Franck Kessie (Al Alhi — $17 million)

After a brief stint in Barcelona, where he helped the team win the LaLiga EA Sports trophy last year, Franck Kessié moved to Saudi Pro League to play for Al Alhi.

Franck Kessie

Kessie is a dynamic player with good passing ability, a strong physic, and an eye for goal. He has a few sponsorship contracts outside of the game, one of which being with Adidas.

8. Thomas Party (Arsenal — $16 million)

Partey is a highly respected defensive midfield player in the Premier League, known for his versatility, excellent defensive capabilities, and accurate passing.

Apart from being the third most following Ghanaian footballer on social media, Partey is also among the top paid players at Arsenal.

Thomas Partey

Apart from earning from the pitch, Partey has secured multiple endorsement and sponsorship agreements with prominent brands such as Adidas.

9. Seko Fofana (Al Nassr — $16 million)

During last summer transfer window, Ivorian midfielder Seko Fofana made the decision to join the Saudi Pro League from RC Lens in Ligue 1.

Seko Fofana with AFCON

Fofana, came through Manchester City’s junior programme before joining Lens and while at France, he established himself as one of the top defenders in the French league with his flexibility and commanding presence in midfield. He caught the the attention of Al Nassr where he now makes over ten times as much as he did at his former team.

10. Sébastien Haller (Borussia Dortmund — $14 million)

When Sebastien Haller returned to Germany last year, he had a difficult beginning to his life.

The former striker for Ajax, West Ham, and Eintracht Frankfurt was well-known for his ability to score goals. In 2022, he received a testicular cancer diagnosis, which he recovered to return to professional football in January 2023.

Sébastien Haller

With several lucrative deals to his name off the pitch, including one with Puma and as of 2024, Haller is among the highest-paid African football players in the world and the highest-paid player at Borussia Dortmund.

Read also: Ronaldo, Messi… See list of highest-paid footballers in 2024

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