Richest African soccer players

1. Samuel Eto’o

Samuel Eto’o, the legendary football striker who was born in Douala Cameroon and made a name for himself in the world, is Africa’s richest soccer player.

The net worth of Eto’o, who continues to play at the ripe age of 39, is $95-million, according to the website, Wealth Gorilla. While E’to, who made his name and the millions in Spain, playing for Barcelona, is richest on the African continent, he is eleven places below Christiano Ronaldo, the Juventus striker and a multiple Ballon D’or winner who sits on the crown with a massive wealth of $450-million.

E’to retired in 2019 after an illustrious career which included playing for 11 teams – with some of them being among the greatest in the game. E’to played for Barcelona, Inter Milan, Chelsea, Real Madrid, Everton, Sampdoria, Real Mallorca, Antalyaspor, Anzhi Machakala and Qatar Sports Club.

He is also a multiple achiever. 

In his sparkling career, Et’o won:

  • The African Player of the Year four times.
  • Top scorer four times. Twice during the Africa Cup of Nations, at Inter Milan in 2010 and at Barcelona in 2005.
  • Four European Champions League titles, two with Barcelona and one each with Real Madrid and Inter Milan.
  • Three Spanish championship titles with Barcelona.
  • Two Spanish Cup titles with Real Mallorca and Barcelona.
  • Two Spanish Super Cup trophies with Barcelona in 2005 and 2006.
  • An Italian championship title with Inter Milan.
  • The Italian Cup twice with Inter Milan.
  • An Olympic medal with Cameroon at the ..Olympics
  • The Italian Super Cup with Inter Milan.
  • The Inter-Continental Cup with Real Madrid in 1998.
  • The Copa Catalunya Cup with Barcelona twice – in 2004 and 2006.

Et’o has, over the years, plowed back and spent millions to uplift people in his native Cameroon. His philanthropic work is done through the Samuel Eto’o Foundation.

When the Coronavirus or COVID-19 hit his country of birth, Et’o spent millions to supply protective personal equipment and other necessities to at least 100 000 people in Cameroon.

2. Didier Drogba

Didier Drogba, another retired legendary African goal poacher, is the second richest soccer player.  His wealth is placed at $95-million, by the website Wealth Gorilla. Droga, who retired in 2018 after an incredible career with historic milestones, is Cote D’Ivoire’s all-time leading goal scorer.

His exploits on the pitch saw him winning the African Player of Year twice, in 2005 and 2006. Drogba’s career started at the tender age of 15 when he joined a French second division team, Levallois. He did well and in 1997, was signed by Le Mans FC. In 2002 he made his debut in the French top division when he signed for Guingamp.

He scored 17 goals in 34 games. His achievements caught the attention of the big clubs in the French league. Olympique Marseille were first off the block and signed him in 2003.

His introduction to the Marseille fans was to score 30 in league and club competition in his first year with the club.  He joined Chelsea in 2004. Not only did he become the club’s top goalscorer, but he assisted them to win the league title, the FA Cup and the club’s first European Championship  League trophy. 

He left Chelsea in 2013 for a short with Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua and joined Turkish football giants, Galatasaray. Drogba’s contribution helped Galatasaray to win the Turkish first division title that year.

He re-joined Chelsea for a year in 2014 and made his debut in the American Major Soccer League in 2015. He played for Montreal Impact before joining Phoenix Rising as a player and part-owner.

Et’o and Drogba are the only African players who feature in the Top 20 list of the richest soccer players in the world. 

3. Yaya Toure

Drogba’s countryman, Yaya Toure, the middle field general who won many awards with Spanish giants Barcelona and English Premier League champions Manchester City, comes in third with an estimated net worth of $70-million.

Toure won the African Player of the Year four times and has winners medals for the European Champions League, the European Super Cup, the Fifa Club World Cup as well as the UK Premier League, the Community Shield and the FA Cup. 

4. Mohamed Salah

Egyptian super striker Mohamed Salah, who has just won the 2020 English Premiership League with Liverpool, also won the European Champions League with the English club, shares the third spot with Toure.

His net worth is also estimated at $70-million. Salah, who forms a deadly partnership with Senegalese superstar Sadio Mane, has also won the African Player of the Year twice and shared the English league’s Golden Boot Award for most goals in 2018 with Mane and another African in Gabon’s Aubameyang. 

5. Emmanuel Adebayor
MADRID, SPAIN – JANUARY 27: Emmanuel Adebayor smiles while being presented as a new Real Madrid player at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on January 27, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)

Togolese superstar, Emmanuel Adebayor, who has played for some of the world biggest clubs, including Real Madrid, Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspurs and Arsenal, is fourth with an estimated net value of $50-million.

He won the 2008 African Player of the Year award and is currently playing for Olimpia Asuncion in Paraguay. 

6. John Mikel-Obi

Former Nigerian captain John Mikel-Obi, who retired from football this year after a trophy-filled career, is the fifth richest player on the African continent with a net worth estimated at $45-million.

Mikel-Obi’s main achievements were made while he played for Chelsea, where he won the European Champions League trophy in 2011. He also bagged the English FA Cup four times and the English Premier League title with Chelsea.

Mikel-Obi also won the Africa Cup of Nations with Nigeria in 2013. 

7. Michael Essien

Michael Essien, one of the best players to emerge out of Ghana, is, at 36, in the twilight of his career but his achievements at the prime of his career, has kept him as the six, with his net worth estimated at $40-million.

His biggest achievement is the European Champions League medal, which he won with Chelsea in 2011. He also won two league titles with Chelsea as well as Olympic Lyon, the club he left to join Chelsea.

However, the career of a player who started his football career at Liberty Professionals in Accra Ghana is slowly coming to an end. He is currently playing for Premier Liqasi in Azerbaijan. 

8. Asamoah Gyan

Legendary Ghanaian center forward  Asamoah Gyan, also approaching the end of his career at 34, is the seventh richest soccer player in Africa. His net worth is estimated at $23-million.

Gyan has scored several achievements in his career which includes playing for Italian club Udinese, French club Stade Rennais and  English club Sunderland.

He holds the record for most goals scored by an African at a Fifa World Cup. 

9. Odion Ighalo

Odion Ighalo’s career can best be described as moderate. His loan move to English giants Manchester United from his Chinese Club represents his first touch in the exclusive group of top clubs in Europe and the world. His move from English club Watford, at $25-million, was the most expensive of his career.

He is the 8th richest African soccer player with a net worth of $20-million.

10. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, the captain of the Gabon national team lets his feet do the talking and earn him hard-earned millions. With a net worth estimated at $20-million, he is the 9th richest player in Africa.

While he played for a number of French and Italians teams, he made his mark at German Team Borussia Dortmund, where he became a household striker, leading the club to new heights in the European soccer scene.

He won the African Player of the Year award in 2015 and in the 2018/19 season shared the Golden Boot Award, in the English Premier League, with Liverpool teammates Sadio Mane and Mohammed Salah.

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