Football has transformed from its old standard of 1860 after its introduction in Africa by the Europeans to the modern-day superb income-generating competitive game.
In recent years, football has tremendous improvement with the fan base and club football in Africa gaining traction, giving individual footballers quick opportunity for wealth.
Check out the list we have here about the top ten (10) richest African footballers in recent years and their net worths.
1. Samuel Eto’o Fils
Samuel Eto’o is a Cameroonian footballer and the first richest soccer player in Africa, born on March 10, 1981.
He was a striker that played for Qatar SC before his retirement. He was married to Georgette Eto’o in 2007.
Etoo is a Cameroonian top scorer with a total of 426goals, and as an African star, has different awards, which include;
- African Player of the Year in 2005, 2006, 2010, etc
- Pichichi Trophy 2006
- CAF Award for Best Ten players since the past 50 years – 2008
- CAF Youth Player of the Year – 2001
- CAF Africa’s finest XI – 2006, 2007, 2009
He started playing at age 11 at the Kadji Sports Academy as a striker.
Though he has played in different clubs, Real Madrid was the first club he played for between 1997 to 2000.
Etoo has guided Cameroon to a second African Cup of Nations and World Cup berth in 2002.
In 2004 Etoo was signed to F.C. Barcelona in 2014 and helped the club capture their first treble by winning Copa del Rey and champions league, and indeed 2009 was a historic season for Barcelona.
He has also scored at the 2010 African cup of Nation’s tournament and which earned him the African Player of the year honors for the fourth time. Etoo retired from international competition in August 2014.
Net worth and salary: The estimation of Eto’o’s net worth is 95 million U.S. dollars. His salary was 8 million EUR as of 2020.
2. Yaya Toure
Yaya Toure is an Ivorian footballer and a midfielder (central, defensive, and attacking) in the Qingdao Huanghai F.C. and the 2nd richest footballer in Africa.
He was born in May 1983 and currently has a net worth of 70 million U.S. dollars. Yaya held the award of African Footballer of the year for four consecutive years.
He was an assistant coach of Russian Grozny and can speak French, Russian, Greek, Catalan, and English.
His 2013/14 season will forever be history as the best midfielder to complete 90 percent of his passes.
Through the recommendation of his mentor Patrick Van, Toure joined the ASEC Mimosa youth academy in 1996 and later joined Olympiacos in 2007 and then to other subsequent clubs.
He has always been a member of the Ivory Coast and a captain after the retirement of Dogba.
Furthermore, after he led Ivory C0ast to victory, he won BBC African Football of the year for the second time in 2015 with a net worth of 70 million dollars.
3. John Mikel Obi
Mikel Obi, a Nigerian midfielder with a net worth of 60 million dollars, is the third richest African footballer. He was born in April 1987 and is currently playing for Trabzonspor.
He first started as a player on a dusty pitch at Jos Metropolis until Alhaji Adamu Mohammed, a Hausa football lover, spotted him and supported him to the end.
Mikel was a member of Pepsi football academy before his star makers scouted and picked him to play in a top-flight Plateau United at the age of 12, and he continued progressing.
The veteran footballer has represented Nigeria in many championships and featured for the English Premier League side Chelsea and Lyn Oslo in Norway.
Mikel played for Nigeria in 2005 at the FIFA World Youth Championships and carried Nigeria to the final, where they lost to Argentina with 2 – 1 in Netherland.
Mikel has deals and contracts worth millions and impressive cars.
4. Emmanuel Adebayo
Emmanuel Adebayo is the 4th richest African footballer and a Togolese striker who has played for Arsenal, Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspurs, Real Madrid, and Crystal Palace, among other local and international clubs.
He is the first Togolese ever to win the African Football of Year.
In 2017, he signed a deal that will fetch him 2.6million Euros per year, and in 2015 while at Manchester City, he earned 268,000 per week, thereby summing up his net worth to 45 million dollars.
Emmanuel was born in February 1984 and was scouted and taken to France, and later signed a contract deal with Arsenal in 2006.
Adebayo has helped the Togo team qualify for the quarter-finals at the 2013 African Cup of Nations.
Net worth: $45 million
5. Asamoah Gyan
Asamoah Gyan, a Ghanaian striker at North East United F.C. and the 5th African soccer player, is the highest goal scorer in Ghana, who represented the country in 2006, 2010, and 2014 FIFA World Cups.
He joined UAE Pro League on loan in 2011 and became the league’s top goalscorer scoring 24 times in 27 matches.
Gyan got a license to operate a private airline by the Ghanaian Civil Aviation Authority, he named the start-up Baby Jet Airlines, with permission for AOC certification drive resumption.
Apart from football, Gyan also knows boxing. Moreover, he displayed his interest in table tennis in 2020 because he needed to keep fit after a long recovery break.
Gyan has played in about nine clubs and has a net worth of 23 million U.S. dollars.
6. Didier Yves Drogba
Net worth: $90 million; salary: $15 million per year
Date of Birth: March 11, 1978
Yves Drogba is a retired Ivorian striker, and when it comes to the history of African football, he’s the 6th African footballer and one of the best.
He began his career building at an early age when he was still living with his uncle.
Didier Drogba, a Chelsea legend, has been with the F.C. from 2004 to 2012 and had scored several goals for the Blues with a first league title in 50 years.
In 2012, his displays made him the first African player to score 100 premier leagues goals and the first player to score in four separate F.A. Cup finals.
Drogba is hyperactive in social issues related to Africa.
His role in his country’s peace process got him the appointment as Goodwill Ambassador for the United Development Programme and the Vice President for the international organization Peace and Sports in 2007 and 2018.
Furthermore, Drogba captained the Ivory Coast team for seven years, became the Nation’s all-time top goalscorer with 65 goals from 105 appearances, and finally retired from professional football in 2018 at 40.
7. Mohamed Salah
Mohamed Salah, also known as Mo Salah, is the 7th richest footballer in Africa and an Egyptian footballer who plays a forward, born in June 1992.
He started his football career at a younger age with the Egyptian club El Mokawloon and his senior debut in the Premier League of Egypt against El Mansoura.
From earning minutes on the pitch to becoming a regular team, the record-breaker was signed to Liverpool in 2017 and has gotten 208 appearances with 129 goals.
Mo Salah captains the Egypt national team and is more known for finishing, dribbling, and speed. He also assisted Liverpool in winning the 2018/2019 UEFA Champions League.
Salah has contracts deals signed with some reputable companies like Adidas, Falken Tyers, Uber and has a net worth of 70 million dollars with different awards categories.
8. Seydou Keita
Seydou Keita is a retired footballer from Mali and the 8th richest soccer player in Africa.
Being the beginning of his golden career, he started developing his career when he was 17, represented Mali at age 20, and appeared in the Nation’s seventh African cup.
Keita established himself with Sang et Or between 2002 to 2007, and by 2008, he signed with Barcelona.
He made more than 180 appearances for Barca, won multiple honors with three La Liga titles, two Copa del Rey titles, and the UEFA Champions League. He achieved all these between 2008 to 2012.
According to reports, Keita joined Dalian Aerbin in 2012 and received 14 million euros per year.
Though Keita has retired, he still maintains his goodwill, ambassadorial, and charity work.
Net worth: $51 million; source of wealth: football and endorsements
9. Micheal Essien
Michael Essien is a Ghanaian midfielder, and the 9th richest footballer in Africa, often featured in the champions league and premier league.
Essien rose to fame as a Chelsea midfielder in 2000. Currently playing at Superliga F.C., Essien has been capped over 50 times for the Ghana national team.
He has played in clubs like Bastia, Lyon, Chelsea, Real Madrid, Milan, Panathinaikos, Persib Bandung, and Sabail.
Essien made 168 appearances, won 2 Premier League titles, 4 F.A. Cups, and 1 Champions League at Chelsea with a net worth of 35 million dollars.
10. Christopher Samba
Christopher Samba, a defender in the Congo national team born in March 1984, is Africa’s tenth richest football player.
Samba had no club but was training on his own without supervision.
In 2005, he began to train with senior players at the pre-season training camp.
He made his first-team debut at Hertha BSC on August 26, 2005, coming as a 70th-minute substitute in a 3 – 0 loss against Bayern Munich.
In 2007, Samba signed with Blackburn Rovers F.C, where he made his debut against Luton Town in the 4th round of the Football Association Challenge Cup.
Net worth: Samba currently has a net worth of 20 million U.S. dollars.
Who is the richest African footballer in 2020?
Samuel Eto’o is undoubtedly the richest footballer in Africa in 2020, with a net worth of 95 million U.S. dollars. He’s a Cameroonian striker that played in Real Madrid FC but is currently at Qatar SC before his retirement.
Who is the wealthiest African footballer in 2021?
The richest footballer in Africa in 2021 is Muhammad salah. The Egyptian footballer has a net worth of 70 million dollars and takes a winger position at the Liverpool Football Club.
Who is the wealthiest Nigerian footballer in 2021?
The wealthiest Nigerian footballer in 2021 is John Mikel Obi, having a net worth of 23 Billion nairas with expensive houses and cars worth millions.
He’s a Nigerian midfielder with lots of endorsement.
Who is the richest footballer in 2021?
The wealthiest footballer worldwide is Zlatan Ibrahimovic. He’s a Sweden footballer that has played for Netherland, Italy, Spain, etc., with multiple scoring titles. The PSG striker has a net worth of 195 million U.S. dollars.
The above-listed African football players defied the odds to turn the less popular football game into a money-minting sport.
Technological advances and globalization also contribute to the profitability of football for several clubs, making them increase wages for individual African soccer players.