Soccer’s Highest Earning Star Lionel Messi Happy To Take 70% Pay Cut During Pandemic
Barcelona's Lionel Messi, the highest-earning soccer star in the world according to Forbes 2019 list of highest-paid athletes, is reportedly happy to take a 70% pay cut in his soccer salary.
Per Moises Llorens and Sam Marsden of ESPN, Messi and his Barcelona teammates were surprised club executives would want to pressure players into cutting down their salaries amid the coronavirus pandemic, saying he and his teammates are glad to do it as so many around the world are struggling.
On top of that, the group plans to support other staff members in the organization by covering any shortage in their salaries.
Messi makes more than €600,000 a week ($661,152 in U.S. dollars) between endorsements and playing salary. He made $127 million last year, per Forbes.
He will not be taking a pay cut in his endorsement money.
Messi, 32, is from Argentina and considered by many to be the best soccer player in the world, along with Cristiano Ronaldo.
Using his social media platforms, Messi shared the following statement on the subject matter.
"We want to clarify that our desire has always been for a reduction to be applied to our salaries because we understand that this is an exceptional situation and we are the first that have ALWAYS helped the club with what they have asked of us.
"Many times we have even done things on our own accord, at moments when we felt it necessary or important to do so.
"For that reason, it doesn't cease to surprise us that from inside the club there would be people that want to put us under a magnifying glass or try to pressure us into something that we were always clear we wanted to do. In fact, if the agreement has dragged on, it's because we were looking for a formula to help the club and its workers in these difficult times.
"For our part, the moment has arrived to announce that, aside from the 70% wage cut during the State of Emergency, we are going to also make contributions so that all the club's employees can earn 100% of their salaries for as long as this situation lasts."
On top of the pay cut, Messi makes it clear he and his teammates will be covering the entire salaries of others within the organization.