The World Cup champion takes home $20.4 million per season, the MLS's highest-paid player, followed by Toronto FC's Lorenzo Insigne at $15.4 million. Of course, Messi rakes in much more than his guaranteed compensation — his separate deals with Apple TV bring in an additional $30 – $40 million.
The Argentine benefits from a share of the revenue generated by Apple TV+, which offers exclusive broadcasts of MLS matches through its Season Pass. The annual subscription is $99, while a monthly option is available for $14.99.
Messi's comprehensive annual salary ($60 – $70m) is higher than any NFL player.
MLS Top 5 Highest-Paid Players
|Player||Team||Guaranteed Salary (in million $)|
|Lionel Messi||Inter Miami||20.4|
|Lorenzo Insigne||Toronto FC||15.4|
|Xherdan Shaqiri||Chicago Fire||8.15|
|Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez||LA Galaxy||7.44|
|Federico Bernardeschi||Toronto FC||6.3|
Inter Miami tops club payroll rankings
Signing Messi compelled Inter Miami to bring in additional reinforcements. Messi's former Barcelona teammates, Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba, signed deals guaranteeing them $1.775 million and $1.25 million, respectively.
Miami's colossal wage bill instantly put them atop the league in salary rankings at $39.4 million, followed by Toronto FC at $32.3 million. Below are the MLS teams with the highest and lowest payrolls; ironically, the top three teams failed to make the playoffs. Orlando City falls to the bottom at $9.643 million, but the Lions still made the playoffs.
MLS Highest Club Payrolls
|Team||Payroll (in million $)|
|New York Red Bulls||11.331|
|St. Louis City||11.187|