Top 10 Highest-Paid African Footballers in 2024 Revealed as Riyad Mahrez dethrones Mohamed Salah [UPDATED]

Top 10 Highest-Paid African Footballers in 2024 Revealed as Riyad Mahrez dethrones Mohamed Salah [UPDATED]


Saudi Pro League stars dominate the list of highest-paid African footballers in 2024.

Football in Africa  has continued to grow in prominence and global recognition, producing some of the world’s most talented stars on the pitch.

 In 2024, the African continent saw a surge in footballers’ salaries, mostly owing to the exodus to the Middle East in the summer transfer window.

In this article, Pulse Sports reveals the top 10 highest-paid African footballers in 2024.


Cristiano Ronaldo has maintained his crown as the highest paid footballer in the world in 2023 ahead of his eternal rival Messi.


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These athletes have not only achieved success on the field but have also secured lucrative contracts and endorsement deals, making them some of the richest footballers in the world.

REVEALED: Highest-Paid African Footballers in 2024 – The Top 10

Highest Paid African Footballers in 2024

Highest Paid African Footballers in 2024 | Illustration by David Ben

These top 10 highest-paid African footballers in 2024 exemplify the incredible talent and marketability of African players. 

These athletes have been able to achieve financial success thanks to their skills, hard work, and dedication to the sport.

 These African stars also serve as role models for aspiring footballers across the continent and showcase the potential for football to bring prosperity to individuals and nations alike.

Only one Nigerian footballer makes the list which is largely dominated by stars plying their trade in the Saudi Pro League.

Below is a list of the highest-paid African footballers in the world.

1. Riyad Mahrez, Al Ahli — $58 million

Riyad Mahrez is the highest paid African footballer in 2024

Riyad Mahrez is the highest paid African footballer in the world in 2024 | Credit: Getty Images

Age: 32

 Nationality: Algeria

 On-Field Earnings: $56 million 

Off-Field Earnings: $2 million

 Riyad Mahrez had been a key figure in Manchester City’s successes in recent years prior to his summer switch to Saudi Arabia. 

The Algerian skipper signed for Al Alhi of the Saudi Pro League and takes home more than triple of his wages at Man City with his current wage worth around $56 million per year, making him the no.1 highest-paid African footballer in the world in 2024.

 As of 2024, no African footballer in the world earns more than Mahrez on the pitch.

 Off the pitch, Mahrez has reportedly had deals with Nike and Pepsi.

2. Mohamed Salah, Liverpool — $53 million

Mohamed Salah is one of the highest paid African footballers in 2023

Mohamed Salah of Liverpool and Egypt| Photo Credit: IMAGO

Age: 31 

Nationality: Egypt

On-Field Earnings: $35million

Off-Field Earnings: $18 million

Mohamed Salah was ranked the highest-paid African in the Forbes list of highest-paid footballers in 2023. 

However, the prolific winger is still behind Riyad Mahrez as far as earnings are concerned in 2024.

The Liverpool and Egyptian national team star has consistently been a top scorer in the English Premier League. 

Salah is already an all-time Liverpool great, and nearly became the most expensive signing in the Saudi Pro League after Al Ittihad reportedly offered a staggering $190 million transfer fee – only for Liverpool to immediately reject on deadline day.

Off the pitch, Mo Salah has a signature boot with Adidas and also has deals with brands like Pepsi, Vodafone, Oppo, amongst others.

3. Sadio Mané, Al Nassr —  $52 million

Sadio Mane is one of the highest paid African footballers in 2023

Sadio Mane of Al-Nassr and Senegal | Credit: Imago

Age: 31 

Nationality: Senegal

On-Field Earnings: $48 million

Off-Field Earnings: $4 million

Former Liverpool star, Sadio Mané, follows closely behind Salah. 

Known for his blazing speed and impeccable ball control, the Senegalese forward has made it to the upper echelons of the sport.

Mané is the most prolific Senegalese footballer in history leading his nation’s scoring charts currently with 37 career goals.

After a successful spell in England with Liverpool, Mane left the Premier League to test new waters in the Bundesliga with German giants Bayern Munich.

However, after a difficult season in Germany, the philanthropic winger sealed a mega-money deal to join Saudi Pro League club Al Nassr.

That deal would essentially make him the highest-paid African footballer in history with regard to wages on the pitch and one of the highest paid footballers in the world in 2023.

Off the pitch, Mané has a number of lucrative deals, most notably with prominent sportswear brand New Balance.

4. Kalidou Koulibaly, Al Hilal — $26 million

Kalidou Koulibaly is one of the highest paid African footballers in 2023

Kalidou Koulibaly | Credit: Getty Images

Age: 32 

Nationality: Senegal

On-Field Earnings: $26 million

Off-Field Earnings: $0.05 million

Kalidou Koulibaly is a highly regarded Senegalese defender known for his exceptional strength, speed, and ability to read the game.

Koulibaly has since established himself as one of the best African defenders in the world.

 Koulibaly played for Serie A club Napoli for more than 7 years, before making a switch to Chelsea.

However, the 32-year-old defender had to cut short his Chelsea spell as he admitted he couldn’t say no to a life-changing switch to Saudi Arabia in the 2023 summer transfer window in a deal that sees him earn around $26 million yearly.

“I can’t deny it, I’m going to Arabia for the money. I will be able to help my whole family to live well, from my parents to my cousins,” Koulibaly said in a statement as reported by ‘Corriere dello Sport’.

Off the pitch, Koulibaly remains one of the most-followed Senegalese footballers on social media.

5. Achraf Hakimi, Paris Saint Germain — $20 million

Achraf Hakimi is one of the highest paid African footballers in 2023

Achraf Hakimi of PSG and Morocco | Credit: IMAGO

Age: 25

Nationality: Morocco

On-Field Earnings: $15 million

Off-Field Earnings: $5 million

Paris Saint Germain star Achraf Hakimi is widely considered as one of the most marketable African athletes in the world.

The Moroccan World Cup star is known for his exceptional pace and versatility on the pitch.

 He primarily plays as a full-back or wing-back and is renowned for his attacking prowess, contributing both defensively and offensively.

 Hakimi has played for top clubs like Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, and Inter Milan, and commands one of the highest salaries by a Moroccan footballer.

Off the pitch, the 25-year-old is one of the most active footballers on social media, known to be best friends with one of the highest-paid footballers in the world Kylian Mbappe.

Achraf Hakimi is currently sponsored by Adidas UK, having had several endorsement deals with major brands such as Nike, Pepsi, and Huawei. 

He has also appeared in campaigns for Puma and Beats by Dre, and is one of the most followed African footballers on social media.

6. Victor Osimhen, Napoli — $20 million

Victor Osimhen Highest paid African footballers 2024

Victor Osimhen is the highest-paid Nigerian footballer in 2024 (Photo Credit: Napoli/X)

Age: 25

Nationality: Nigeria

 On-Field Earnings: $18 million 

Off-Field Earnings: $2 million

 Victor Osimhen began 2024 as the highest-paid Nigerian footballer.

 The 25-year-old striker, donning the colors of Napoli, signed a groundbreaking deal with the reigning Scudetto champions late last year. 

The deal made him become the highest-paid African to ever play in the Serie A. 

The reigning CAF Player of the year is also the most valuable African footballer in the world. Osimhen’s new deal at Napoli is also the second biggest contract signed by a Nigerian footballer ever, as he is expected to earn north of $40 million by the end of the contract in 2026. 

Off the field, the Lagos-born striker has a slew of investments – most of which is undisclosed. 

He is also reportedly courted by sportswear giants Nike, Puma, and Adidas who look to tie down a deal for Nigeria’s most influential footballer in 2024, when he is touted to seal a big-money move away from Italy.

7. Franck Kessié, Al Alhi — $17 million

Franck Kessie is one of the highest paid African footballers in 2023

Franck Kessie | Credit: Getty Images

Age: 28

Nationality: Ivory Coast

On-Field Earnings: $15 million

Off-Field Earnings: $2 million

Franck Kessié endured a brief spell in Barcelona, helping them to the LaLiga EA Sports title last campaign before making a switch to Saudi Pro League club, Al Alhi.

Kessie is a versatile player with a strong physical presence, excellent passing ability, and a keen eye for goal-scoring opportunities. 

Kessie has established himself as one of the most dynamic and sought-after midfielders in the football world.

Off the pitch, he has some endorsement deals including one with Adidas.

As of 2024, Franck Kessie is the highest-paid Ivorian footballer in the world.

8. Thomas Partey, Arsenal — $16 million

Thomas Partey is one of the highest paid African footballers in 2023

Thomas Partey of Arsenal and Ghana | Credit: IMAGO

Age: 30

Nationality: Ghana

On-Field Earnings: $13 million

Off-Field Earnings: $3 million

Arsenal’s Thomas Partey is the only Ghanaian on this list.

Partey is recognized for his versatility, strong defensive abilities, and passing accuracy, widely regarded as one of the best defensive midfielders in the Premier League. 

Partey is also one of the highest earners at Arsenal, and the third most-followed Ghanaian footballer on social media.

Outside the pitch, Partey is one of the most influential Ghanaian athletes in the world, having signed several endorsements and sponsorship deals with brands like Adidas.

9. Seko Fofana, Al Nassr — $16 million

Seko Fofana is one of the highest paid African footballers in 2024

Seko Fofana is one of the highest paid African footballers in 2024 | Credit: Getty Images

 Age: 28

 Nationality: Ivory Coast

 On-Field Earnings: $16 million

 Off-Field Earnings: $0.03 million

 Ivorian midfielder Seko Fofana decided to leave RC Lens in Ligue 1 for a switch to the Saudi Pro League in the summer transfer window.

 Having come through Manchester City’s youth academy, Fofana established himself as one of the best defenders in the French league and is known for his versatility and strong midfield presence.

 However, Fofana completed a switch to Al Nassr in the summer and currently earns more than 10 times his salary at his previous club. 

As of 2024, he is one of the highest-paid Ivorian footballers in the world.

10. Sébastien Haller, Borussia Dortmund — $14 million

Sebastien Haller is one of the highest paid African footballers in 2024

Sebastien Haller is one of the highest paid African footballers in 2024| Credit: Getty Images

Age: 29

Nationality: Ivory Coast

On-Field Earnings: $12 million

Off-Field Earnings: $2 million

Sebastien Haller endured a tough start to life following his return to Germany last year.

Known for his goalscoring prowess, the former Ajax, West Ham, and Eintracht Frankfurt striker was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2022, which he overcame, before returning to professional football in January 2023.

As of 2024, Haller is the highest-paid player at Borussia Dortmund and one of the highest-paid African footballers in the world, with a number of lucrative deals to his name off the pitch – including one with Puma.

METHODOLOGY

The Pulse Sports ranking of Africa’s highest-paid footballers reflects the combined total of on-field earnings for the 2023-24 season, including base salaries, bonuses, and off-field estimates that reflect annual cash from endorsements, sponsorships, social media revenue, and the players’ own businesses.

 The figures were obtained from publicly accessible databases, such as Forbes, Capology.com, and discussions with experts in the field.

All figures used in this article are converted to U.S. dollars using the current exchange rate.



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