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Top 6 MLS Highest Paid Players

The growth in the American tournament has reached such a point that there are cases in which players can get greatest economic success than in many European leagues, in addition to the competitive level of the league, which has been on the rise as well. All of this makes MLS increasingly tempting for many players who are in the prime moment of their career, killing the stigma of it being a league for the players to retire with, a reputation it has always had.

In this list we present you the top 6 highest paid players in MLS today, many being household names in European soccer.

6. Josef Martínez – Atlanta United

MLS Highest Paid - Josef Martinez
Atlanta United forward Josef Martínez (7) during an MLS soccer match Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)

The second member of Atlanta United on this list is Josef Martínez, one of the best scorers in recent years in Major League Soccer with 101 goals in 5 seasons. The Venezuelan ranks sixth in the ranking of highest paid players, with a salary of approximately $3.891.667 million dollars.

The MVP of the 2018 campaign arrived at the Atlanta institution during 2017, becoming a permanent player of the team in 2018, after negotiating his pass with the Italian club, Torino. Josef has established himself as one of the best players in the league overall and despite his physical setbacks, and he is considered, financially, the most valuable player in the tournament at present.

5. Luiz Araujo – Atlanta United

MLS Highest Paid - Luiz Araújo
Atlanta United forward Luiz Araújo (19) shows his displeasure with a call as Toronto FC defender Omar González (44) sets up a free kick during an MLS soccer match Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)

The most recent addition to this list is the 25-year-old Brazilian, who arrived from the champion of Ligue 1, Lille, for a fee of around €10.000.000 million.

Indeed, as one of the highest transfers in the club’s history, his salary also matches the amount of his tab, $3.941.667 million, narrowly edging out teammate Josef Martinez (who is sixth on the list).

4. Alejandro Pozuelo – Toronto FC

MLS Highest Paid - Alejandro Pozuelo
Toronto FC midfielder Alejandro Pozuelo (10) during an MLS soccer match Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)

The Spaniard arrived in Canada in the 2018-2019 season for a figure close to €10 million, and he has become an emblem for the Toronto franchise. Winning the 2020 season MVP (nine goals and ten assists), Pozuelo is also the highest paid player on the team with a salary of $4.693.000 million.

3. Gonzalo Higuaín – Inter Miami

MLS Highest Paid - Gonzalo Higuaín
Inter Miami forward Gonzalo Higuain (9) reacts after forward Robbie Robinson sacred a goal during the second half of an MLS soccer match against Chicago Fire, Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2021, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Inter Miami won 3-2. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

The French-Argentine has been with the Eastern Conference franchise for two years, accumulating 13 goals and nine assists in 39 games so far in his MLS career. He arrived as a free agent for the 2020 season, the 34-year-old forward has the third-highest salary in the entire league, coming in at $5.793.750 million.

To continue with the coincidences, the eighth highest paid in MLS is also a teammate of Gonzalo, Rodolfo Pizarro, who is paid $3.350.000 million dollars.

2. Javier Hernández – LA Galaxy

MLS Highest Paid - Javier Hernandez
LA Galaxy forward Javier Hernandez (14) plays during the first half of an MLS soccer match against Portland Timbers, Saturday, May 22, 2021, in Portland, Ore. Portland Timbers won 3-0. (AP Photo/Amanda Loman)

Chicharito sealed his pass to Los Angeles from Sevilla for the 2020 season for a transfer fee of €8.500.000 million, and he is currently the second highest paid player in the league with a salary of $6.000.000 million.

The Mexican has been an important part of the Galaxy at the age of 32, scoring 17 goals in 21 games last season and is undoubtedly the best player on the team at the moment.

1. Carlos Vela – Los Angeles FC

MLS Highest Paid - Carlos Vela
Los Angeles FC forward Carlos Vela (10) in the second half of an MLS soccer match Sunday, Nov. 7, 2021, in Commerce City, Colo. The Rapids won 5-2. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Vela, the first designated player in the club’s history, joined the team for the 2018 season from Real Sociedad, sealing his pass for a fee in the close to €5.000.000 million.

The Mexican forward has since become one of the most iconic figures in MLS, being named MVP in the 2019 campaign, in which he finished with 34 goals (all-time league record) and ten assists. At 32 years old, Vela is the highest paid in all of the MLS, with a salary of $6.300.000 million dollars.


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