Beckham Tops The Goal Rich List 2013
The Paris Saint-Germain star is the world's wealthiest footballer with a staggering net worth of £175m, ahead of Barcelona's Lionel Messi and Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo.
Paris Saint-Germain's David Beckham has topped the inaugural Goal Rich List 2013 with a staggering net worth of £175 million.
Beckham finished some £59.5m ahead of his nearest rival, Barcelona phenomenon Lionel Messi (£115.5m), who in turn pipped Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo (£112m) for the runner-up spot.
The Top Five
Meanwhile, despite finding first-team opportunities hard to come by at the Santiago Bernabeu in recent times, Kaka still finds himself in fourth spot (£66.5m), with Ronaldinho (£63m) just behind in fifth.
Each player's net worth was calculated based on salary, endorsements and assets, as well as taking outside business interests into consideration.
Beckham emerged comfortably on top in spite of the fact he will not earn a penny at PSG in terms of salary - which is being donated to a local children's charity - image rights or merchandising.
Commenting on the results Amar Singh, Managing Editor of Goal said: "The world's top footballers can no longer be regarded as just athletes - they are major international brands and David Beckham is the biggest brand of them all.
"Our findings show just how much wealth footballers are able to accumulate by leveraging this. Far from the bling-loving, sports car-collecting stereotypes, the vast majority of footballers on the Goal Rich List are putting their money to positive use by setting up charitable foundations or funding community initiatives.”
Alex Miller, editor of the Goal Rich List, added: "The wealth David Beckham has accumulated and continues to earn is testament to his continued appeal, because while Beckham’s retirement from the game edges ever closer, his phenomenal earning power shows no sign of slowing down."
The Goal Rich List 2013:
Rules of Engagement
This list comprises a wealth index of current and active professional footballers, as measured by their identifiable wealth. Those who qualify for the list include Fifa registered professional players of all nationalities in any professional league across the world - or registered players currently without a club, but who are actively looking to sign for a professional club.
We attempt to measure only identifiable assets including salaries, length of contract, bonuses, endorsement and sponsorship deals, accounts filed at Companies House, properties and other business interests.
We have no access to bank accounts and do not attempt to compromise player privacy in any way. As a result, cash holdings in private accounts are not considered in this research and so actual wealth may vary slightly from the figures we have concluded.
Business interests may include stakes in quoted companies as of 31 December 2012. It is much more difficult valuing stakes in private companies. We try as a general rule, to base valuations on the prevailing price/earnings ratio for a sector or an equivalent quoted company. Business interests under the name of a spouse or other family members cannot always be accounted for, but where this is possible these have been taken into account.
We do not rely on gossip or other tittle-tattle in compiling this list. Most of the player information has been sourced from public sources such as company accounts lodged in Companies House or international equivalents.
We have also drawn upon the expertise of reputable sources such as France Football, Forbes, The Financial Times, Four Four Two magazine, The Times, the Mail on Sunday, sportingintelligence.com, SportsPro Media, Transfermarkt and Deloitte. We have also spoken to and utilised the expertise and knowledge of a number of player agents, marketing experts and club sources.
We only use private information about individuals if it has been published already in reputable newspapers, magazines or reference work or is known by reputable sources within the football and related industries, but information gathered from players is not always verifiable with absolute certainty.
Where currency values have had to be converted, we have used currency valuations as of 31 December 2012 and we have not included the financial aspects of any deals or renegotiations that players may have enjoyed after 31 December 2012.
We have applied national tax rates for high-earners as follows:
• England: Tax is 50%, falling to 45% in April
• Spain: Tax is 45%, but a ‘complimentary tax’ came in as of Jan 2012 up to 7%, effectively meaning players (earning over €300,000 a year) could pay a tax rate of up to 52%
• France: Top earners could pay 45% in tax - 75% tax rate planned for players earning over €1,000,000 a year <-----
• Germany: Players expected to pay 45% tax
• Italy: Tax rate of 43% for players
• Brazil: Tax rate for top earners of 27.5%
• Argentina: Tax rate for players of 35%
• Qatar: Qatar is tax-free for players
• Russia: Tax rate for players is low, standing at 13%
• China: Tax rate of 45% for players
It is worth noting that top earners in football across Western Europe typically pay less than 30% tax thanks to favoured tax-avoidance measures, such as donating to charity.
The tax rates for high-earners vary across Europe. For example, there have been many reports of the 75% tax rate in France and the impact on footballers. However, the real issue is that for international players (arriving from overseas) they are often tax equalised - so that the tax over and above overseas rates are borne by the club. So when you read of £100,000 a week salaries - that is often net of tax for overseas players.
It is also worth noting that many players set up businesses to receive income such as image rights and endorsements, to be able to pay less tax, ie corporation tax (28% in the UK).
Transfer fees - payments to players
With regards to payments due to players following a transfer, we have worked on the premise that young players can receive on average between 10-15% of any profit the player’s club makes on their transfer fee.
In the UK, very few players tend not to receive a percentage of their transfer fee, although this is negotiable on a player-by-player basis. In Spain, Holland and other leading European countries, these fees are more common and are typically closer to 15% of fees received when they move to higher-profile leagues for big fees.
Unfortunately in many cases where players arrive in Europe from South America, they are exploited by agents and tend not to receive a percentage of their transfer fees.
British-based players can earn lump sums from transfers through their signing on fees. If a player has four years left on a contract with a signing on fee worth £250,000 a year, when transferred he will receive the £1million in full immediately and also additional signing on payments from his new club. They will also be able to negotiate contract settlements, particularly in cases where the club is happy to sell the player.
The bonus figures we have quoted are basic bonuses for team success, but don’t include individual signing-on fees, image rights or loyalty payments, unless otherwise stated.
The Remarkable Stats Behind
The £1.7 Billion Goal Rich List
Our definitive wealth index reveals what it takes to make it to the top of football's money tree
The Goal Rich List is a unique piece of research and therefore gives us a rare opportunity to analyse the trends which determine how a player gets to the top of the money tree.
With a footballers wealth being dependant on so many differing factors, we looked deeper beyond the stark facts of each player's personal haul to see how these superstars developed their fortune.
From their nationality to the clubs they have represented, from their boot sponsors to their age, there are all sorts of ways a footballer can earn mountains of cash in the 21st century. And there are countless reasons why a big sponsor may want to associate themselves with such a player.
We break down some of the most notable facts and stats to be taken from the Goal Rich List...
With the Premier League having led the way in football's current era of marketability, it might come as little surprise that the Goal Rich List is dominated by players from the sport's birthplace. While 22 per cent of the players are English, the remainder are spread over 18 different countries. There are six Italians and five each from Brazil and Spain, while Frenchmen represent 8% of the 50. There are also four Africans on the list, with two Ivorians, one Cameroonian and one Ghanaian amongst the game's wealthiest men.
The Premier League's pulling power with sponsors and advertisers has helped to make wealthy men out of countless players over the years, and an astonishing 50% of the Rich List have played in the English top tier during their careers. La Liga contributes 23 players to the 50-man chart, while Serie A has been the home of 21 players at some point or another. Of course, David Beckham has played in all three of those leagues and he is also one of four men to have played in the MLS, with Thierry Henry, Robbie Keane and Alessandro Nesta all still plying their trade in the American championship.
It is fair to say that some of the game's top players have become rich thanks largely to regular transfer deals and the signing-on fees that comes with them. The ability to flaunt his wares across the world has seen Rivaldo rack up 14 different clubs during his long career in the game, while Robbie Keane and Nicolas Anelka have each so far made first-team appearances for 10 different outfits. At the other end of the scale are 10 players who have only ever played for one club during their professional career. Lionel Messi is the highest-placed of a group including the likes of Ryan Giggs, Steven Gerrard, Iker Casillas and Francesco Totti.
It make sense that a large percentage of the Rich List should be players who have operated for a significant period of time at the top level, and that is reflected in the inclusion of 37 players over the age of 30. While Rivaldo continues to play for Sao Caetano at the age of 40, 39-year-old Ryan Giggs' continued spell with Manchester United has made a rich man of him too. Most notable in the breakdown of age categories, though, is the presence of two players under the age of 26. Neymar and Lionel Messi have already made more than enough to make the 50-man list despite their relative inexperience, with the Argentine breaking through the €115m barrier with plenty of years still left in him.
So what could our 50 players club together and buy? Well, with all of the money at their disposal they would certainly not be short of options. Between them they have enough cash to fork out for 6,299 brand new Ferrari F12 Berlinetta cars, or they could pick up 146 lavish penthouse apartments in Fifth Avenue, New York City. While islands in the Bahamas or luxury yachts could also be on their wishlist, there would also be the chance to emulate Magic Johnson's consortium, who bought the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team in 2012. The Rich List members could pay out the £1.3 billion Magic group bid and still have over £400m to spare.
If the Rich List players wanted to pump their money back into football, there are all sorts of ways they could do so. Their combined wealth would be enough to buy Manchester United twice over, based on the £800m purchase price originally laid out by Malcolm Glazer. Alternatively they could cover Manchester City's current wage bill, including taxes, for the next eight-and-a-half years, or buy Real Madrid four training grounds of the size and quality of Valdebebas. There is even the more democratic option of paying off 69% of the combined debt of the Premier League's 20 clubs with their combined wealth. Or, if they simply wanted to take in a few games, they could by 27.8 million tickets in the Arsenal away end at £62 a pop. That is the entire away capacity for the next 489 seasons at the Gunners' Category A valuation.
Such is the talent on show in the Goal Rich List, a staggering 80 per cent of those included have racked up at least 10 major trophies during their time in professional football. The most successful player is Ryan Giggs, whose 33 honours dwarf the trophy cabinets of the other members of the list. His nearest rivals for the crown are Manchester United team-mate Paul Scholes and Brazilian stalwart Rivaldo, who have each won 24 major titles. With four trophies apiece, Robbie Keane and Daniele De Rossi have the least to show for their careers in terms of honours, although in the Italian's case one of those medals happens to be a World Cup winner's gong.
If you want to be a mega-rich footballer then steer clear of defending. Those plying their trade in the attacking half of the field attract bigger contracts and glitzier sponsors. Of the 50 in the Goal Rich List, 84% are either midfielders or attackers, with 26 players playing in the final third. Interestingly, two of the three goalkeepers on the list are captains of their national side. Iker Casillas and Gianluigi Buffon lead Italy and Spain respectively, while Petr Cech is Tomas Rosicky's vice-captain for the Czech Republic.
4,399 international caps have been collected by the players in the Goal Rich List, making it one of the most star-studded groups of footballers ever collated. At an average of 88 caps per player, the 50 players have all become world stars through the international game, as well as thanks to the popularity of their domestic leagues. Now just imagine what a room filled with 4,399 caps would look like... that's even more than you would find in a rapper's wardrobe.
586 is the number of pounds-per-minute earned by the average player in the Goal Rich List, taking into account total professional games played by each man and spreading their earnings over 90 minutes per match. That is 122 times more in 60 seconds than an American on minimum wage will get for a working a full hour.
£1.728 billion is the total earned by the 50 members of the Goal Rich List. That is enough for the 50 players to club together and pay for an apartment each in New York City's luxury Fifth Avenue district ... and have enough left over for 96 more homes for their friends and families. Equally, any room in which you may find the 50 players would automatically be worth 24 times more than the upmarket Cave Cay island in the Bahamas.
Hala Madrid indeed. A whopping 26 per cent of the players in the Rich List are former or current Real Madrid players. While the Galactico era is a thing of the past, there is still big money available to anyone who signs on the dotted line at the Santiago Bernabeu. With David Beckham, Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka and Samuel Eto'o in the top 10, there is a healthy presence of one-time Blancos at the top end of the list. Raul, Robinho, Iker Casillas, Wesley Sneijder and Nicolas Anelka all make it inside the top 30, while Arjen Robben, Clarence Seedorf and Michael Essien round up the former Madrid men in the full list.
GAME FOR A LAUGH
32,754 appearances had been clocked up in senior professional football by the 50 members of the Goal Rich List over the span of their careers, up to and including February 21, 2013. That includes all club and international games, but not taking into account age-restricted competitions such as Under-21 championships and Olympic tournaments. Amazingly, that means the average Rich List player will have played 655 games in his career so far.
NIKE BOOT THE REST INTO TOUCH
44 per cent of the Rich List wear Nike boots including third-placed Cristiano Ronaldo. Even Adidas, who count our top two of David Beckham and Lionel Messi among their customers, cannot rival the American giants with 17 clients included, while Puma come in a distant third with five men in the 50-man shortlist.
***Thanks to Goal Rich List. Accumulated from many different sources.