The question of who the richest footballer in Africa is will continue to spark discussion and opinions among African football fans.
Outside the global appeal of football due to its entertainment value and ability to bring people together, the financial appeal of the people's game is one of the biggest reasons people flock towards it.
From brands seeking sponsorship deals with teams, to bookmakers, and to football scouts or agents, everyone wants a piece of the football cake.
The players benefit the most from the sport in many ways, especially financially. In Africa, this has spawned millionaires who have touched lives.
Here are the top 10 richest footballers in Africa and their net worth.
10. Sadio Mané – $20 Million
Sadio Mané is one of Africa's best footballers and one of only four active players on this list.
The Al-Nassr front man braved poverty to find his way from Senegal to France. His journey took him to Austria and Germany before he landed in England where he became a superstar at Liverpool.
Now, he is one of the global faces of the new-look Saudi Pro League, playing alongside Cristiano Ronaldo at Al-Nassr. He reportedly earns around $30 million yearly.
Most of that income – like all others from his previous clubs – goes to his community development projects back home in Senegal, but he has managed to amass a net worth of $20 million in his career.
9. Victor Moses – $21 Million
The Super Eagles AFCON 2013 hero currently Plies his trade in Russia with Spartak Moscow after stints in England and Italy. His average salary across his career is $3 million annually, which is what he earns at the Russian club.
He is also a businessman and a frugal spender, which has also helped to build his wealth. He has now gone from the boy who had to escape Nigeria to England due to civil unrest, to a millionaire who made Nigerians happy before his international retirement.
8. Michael Essien – $35 million
Michael Essien is long retired but is still in the game as a coach. The Ghana Black Stars and Chelsea legend is currently among Danish club Nordsjælland's coaching staff after acquiring his coaching licence and badges from UEFA. Fans will be paying attention to his growth and will hope that he can get a big break in the top five leagues soon.
In his career, he represented Chelsea, Real Madrid and AC Milan, making him one of Ghana's most accomplished players.
7. Emmanuel Adebayor – $45 million
The former Togo international retired from football after the 2022/23 season. In his career, he spent time in a number of London's top clubs, most notably Premier League side Arsenal.
He also spent time at Real Madrid, a club that is not synonymous with African talent. He is currently enjoying the fruits of his 21-year career and is also overseeing the activities of his football empowerment programmes across Togo. Many believe he could tow the line of AFCON legends Didier Drogba and Samuel Eto'o and make a beeline for the presidency of the Togo FA in the future.
6. John Mikel Obi – $45 million
The Super Eagles former captain is Nigeria's most accomplished footballers in every ramification. He has the most trophies in his career for club and across all levels for country.
He is also one of the wealthiest, having earned as high as $120,000-per-week during his playing days.
He now spends his retirement doing media tours, being a CAF ambassador, and running his many businesses which contribute to his network of $45 million.
5. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – $50 Million
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has had a rough couple of years on and off the pitch. His last seasons with Arsenal saw him fall out with Mikel Arteta and become the scapegoat for every team mishap and the face of bad behaviour in football. He found solace at Barcelona for six months but had to deal with criminals robbing his household with his little children inside.
His move to Chelsea saw him deal with coaches who knew nothing about him and fans who scapegoated him even when he was not given chances.
Now at Olympique de Marseille, the Gabon national football team all-time top scorer is back to his best and making money from his passion.
The African football king of bling reportedly earns around $9 million yearly from the French club.
4. Yaya Toure – $70 million
The former Barcelona and Manchester City midfielder is one of the best players to have come out of Africa. Unfortunately, he was part of a golden generation of Ivory Coast players who never made it all the way to the AFCON title. His club career, however, was impressive and he amassed the wealth to show for it. He was reported to have earned as high as $170,000-weekly in his playing days. Now he is retired and tending to his businesses which contribute to his $70 million met worth.
3. Didier Drogba – $90 million
Another member of the Ivory Coast golden generation who failed to clinch the AFCON title, Didier Drogba is one of Africa's best football exports. He is immortalised at Chelsea, where he scored the winning goal to help them win their first UEFA Champions League title. He is a Premier League legend, an AFCON legend and a global football icon. Currently in the bid to make Ivory Coast better, he represents African football as a CAF ambassador at various events while making media rounds as a football legend.
2. Mohamed Salah – $90 Million
The only reason that Mohamed Salah is not topping this list is that he is still in active football and is playing in Liverpool.
When there were rumours of him being wanted by Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain who would have paid him obscene amounts of money, it was evident that he would end his career as the continent's richest footballer. He is poised to move to Saudi Arabia after his Liverpool spell is completed and that is where he could usurp the name in the number 1 spot.
1. Samuel Eto’o – $95 million – Richest footballer in Africa
The man who stands between Salah and the number 1 spot on the richest African players list is none other than legendary striker, Samuel Eto'o. He is currently the president of the Cameroon Football Association among other things, which greatly contribute to his net worth.
I’ll be remembering today as one of the proudest moments of my life. I’m deeply grateful for to be elected as the new president of @FecafootOfficie. Every vote represents the energy and ambition of our football family to take our beloved sport to a level we’ve never seen before. pic.twitter.com/2z8fjLBMLA
— Samuel Eto'o (@SamuelEtoo) December 11, 2021
Eto'o still remains Africa's most accomplished players, having won a plethora of personal and individual accolades in his career.
This article was most recently revised and updated 1 month ago