Lionel Messi’s arrival at Inter Miami has carved out a new chapter in his iconic career as the World Cup winner looks to make an impact in the USA.
Messi exploded to life to begin his Inter Miami career, helping the club win its first trophy in the 2023 Leagues Cup. Injuries and fatigue took a toll, however, and the 36-year-old missed key games as Inter Miami missed out on the postseason.
Yet his arrival in MLS has still been a resounding success, as the Argentine has been brilliant when he does take the field.
Messi’s success comes on the back of winning the 2022 World Cup with the Albiceleste, cutting ties with PSG at the end of the 2022/23 European season. He searched for a new challenge and despite receiving an offer to join the growing exodus of Europe-based players to Saudi Arabia, Messi opted against to head to Florida.
And already, Messi is en route to building a notable legacy in Miami. With the annual release of the Major League Soccer compensation information, Messi’s base salary at Inter Miami is now known.
Lionel Messi Inter Miami contract, salary
Messi has signed a two-and-a-half-year contract at Inter Miami, bringing him up to the end of 2025, with a reported option to extend for another 12 months.
According to the 2023 MLS salary release, Messi’s base salary is $12 million, with a total guaranteed compensation of just over $20 million. Those figures make him the highest-paid player in Major League Soccer by a massive margin.
The next-highest paid player is Lorenzo Insigne of Toronto FC, whose $7.5 million base salary and $15.4 million guaranteed compensation don’t come close to Messi’s total. Nobody else in the league outside of those two reach $9 million of guaranteed compensation.
Messi will reportedly also receive an ownership stake in the club as part of his contract, with advertising and image rights talks ongoing with Apple, Adidas, and others. According to The Miami Herald back in June, when factoring in all aspects of the deal beyond just purely his salary, the deal is worth $125-$150 million (£100m-£120m) in total, broken down at around $4.1-$5m (£3.3-£4m) per month.
Salary database Capology has tabbed his salary as being worth $54 million per year in total, for a three-year total of $162 million.
The work starts now ???????? pic.twitter.com/oekDgfqBPy
— Inter Miami CF (@InterMiamiCF) July 18, 2023
Lionel Messi on football’s top salary list
Based on the numbers surrounding Messi’s contract, he will see a drop from his PSG wages, but will still earn more than the majority of European stars.
In comparison to players heading to Saudi Arabia, Messi’s contract is significantly reduced, with his ranking set to drop further as more stars join Cristiano Ronaldo and co.
He remains inside the top five on the top earners list, but his new deal is noticeably lower than Ronaldo’s wage at Al Nassr and Karim Benzema at Al Ittihad.
|Player||Club||Estimated Annual Salary||Estimated Monthly Salary|
|1.||Cristiano Ronaldo||Al Nassr||£173m / $213m||£14.4m/$18m|
|2.||Karim Benzema||Al Ittihad||£169m/$211m||£14m/$17.5m|
|5.||Lionel Messi||Inter Miami||£40m-£48m/$50m-$60m||$4.1m$5m/£3.3m/£4m|