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Soccer, Sports

How much money every Vancouver Whitecaps FC player will make in 2019

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Rob Williams Jul 09, 2019 5:02 pm 8,532

Major League Soccer has grown considerably since its humble beginnings in 1996.

Getting its start following the United States-hosted FIFA World Cup in 1994, the league began with just 10 teams. That’s the way it stayed until 2005, when MLS began an aggressive expansion plan.

Toronto FC became MLS’s first Canadian team in 2007, with the Vancouver Whitecaps (2011) and Montreal Impact (2012) joining soon after.

FC Cincinnati joined MLS this year, with Miami and Nashville (2020), as well as Austin (2021) ready to expand the league in the coming years.

With growth comes an increase in revenue and an uptick in players salaries.

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The MLS Player’s Association released its annual salary guide last month. Unlike most North American sports leagues, player salaries aren’t always readily available, meaning it’s a once-a-year process.

The average base salary for senior roster non-Designated Players has increased 150% over the last five years, from $138,140 to $345,867. This year also marks the eighth consecutive year of average base salary increases.

The Vancouver Whitecaps decided to clean house last offseason after missing the playoffs, so roster is still very much a work-in-progress at the moment, as head coach Marc Dos Santos tries to piece together a winning lineup.

Vancouver ranked last in total payroll among MLS clubs when the salary guide was released on June 1, though they just signed their most expensive player last week, so his up-to-date salary wasn’t counted.

Ali Adnan signed a Designated Player contract with the Whitecaps, keeping him in Vancouver until 2021 with an option for 2022. Precise details of the contract haven’t been made public, though his contract is reportedly the “most expensive” in Whitecaps history.

The highest reported salary in Whitecaps history is that of Fredy Montero, who earned $1.8 million in 2017.

Here’s a look at the Whitecaps’ 2019 payroll, with Adnan’s salary assumed to be above $1.8 million (all figures listed in US dollars, as listed by Spotrac):

First Name Last Name Position(s) Base Salary Guaranteed Compensation
Ali Adnan D >$1,800,000 >$1,800,000
Fredy Montero F $768,000 $968,000
Jon Erice Dominguez M $654,546 $752,364
Yordy Reyna F-M $650,000 $713,140
Hwang In-Beom M $600,000 $655,000
Lucas Venuto M-F $550,000 $600,000
Felipe Martins M $500,000 $500,000
Erik Godoy D $381,818 $449,318
Anthony Blondell F $262,500 $307,703
Joaquin Ardaiz F $272,727 $272,727
Doneil Henry D $190,008 $204,242
Andy Rose M $192,500 $192,500
Zac MacMath GK $190,000 $190,000
Russell Teibert D-M $170,000 $190,000
Jasser Khmiri D $180,000 $180,000
Scott Sutter D $155,000 $170,177
Jake Nerwinski D $120,000 $124,125
Victor “PC” Giro D-M $105,000 $112,438
Derek Cornelius D $100,000 $111,912
Alhassane Bangoura M-F $100,000 $100,000
Maxime Crepeau GK $90,000 $94,083
Michael Baldisimo D-M $56,250 $83,013
Simon Colyn M-F $56,250 $81,250
Thelonius Bair F $56,250 $76,250
Brett Levis D-M $71,663 $74,163
Sean Melvin GK $70,250 $70,250
Thomas Hasal GK $56,250 $66,250
David Norman M $57,225 $58,225
Brendan McDonough D $56,250 $56,250

If Adnan’s contract pays him over $2 million, it would put him into the MLS top-20 in terms of annual guaranteed compensation. That would also pay him more than double Montero, who ranks second among Whitecaps players with $968,000.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic currently leads the league in total salary, with Toronto FC’s Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore close behind. Carlos Vela (LAFC) and Bastian Schweinsteiger (Chicago Fire) are the other players making above $5 million annually.

Here’s a look at the list of players making at least $2 million:

First Name Last Name Club Position Guaranteed Compensation
Zlatan Ibrahimovic LA Galaxy F $7,200,000
Michael Bradley Toronto FC M $6,500,000
Jozy Altidore Toronto FC F $6,332,250
Carlos Vela LAFC M-F $6,300,000
Bastian Schweinsteiger Chicago Fire M $5,600,000
Ignacio Piatti Montreal Impact M-F $4,443,333
Alejandro Pozuelo Melero Toronto FC M-F $3,800,000
Wayne Rooney DC United F $3,507,500
Josef Martinez Atlanta United F $3,058,333
Nicolas Lodeiro Seattle Sounders FC M-F $2,502,500
Nani Orlando City SC M-F $2,486,250
Tim Howard Colorado Rapids GK $2,475,000
Diego Valeri Portland Timbers M-F $2,420,000
Carles Gil New England Revolution M-F $2,337,500
Marco Fabian Philadelphia Union M-F $2,274,087
Nicolas Gaitan Chicago Fire M-F $2,197,504
Albert Rusnak Real Salt Lake M-F $2,001,667
Jonathan dos Santos LA Galaxy M $2,000,000
Maxi Moralez New York City FC M-F $2,000,000

Toronto FC continues to lead the way in player salaries, paying over $21 million in 2019. They’re followed by big market teams in the LA Galaxy ($17.7M), Chicago Fire ($15.9M), and LAFC ($13.8M) as of June 1.

Rank Team Total
1 Toronto FC $21,122,174
2 LA Galaxy $17,724,081
3 Chicago Fire $15,997,955
4 Los Angeles FC $13,867,292
5 Sporting Kansas City $12,406,910
6 Seattle Sounders FC $11,984,466
7 Montreal Impact $11,546,028
8 Portland Timbers $11,105,358
9 Atlanta United FC $10,823,757
10 Columbus Crew $10,514,164
11 Orlando City $10,486,789
12 D.C. United $9,914,746
13 Real Salt Lake $9,613,719
14 New York City FC $9,417,614
15 FC Cincinnati $9,414,909
16 Minnesota United FC $8,347,111
17 Philadelphia Union $8,315,186
18 New England Revolution $8,182,996
19 San Jose Earthquakes $8,121,656
20 Colorado Rapids $8,036,215
21 New York Red Bulls $7,486,025
22 FC Dallas $7,466,944
23 Houston Dynamo $6,857,169
24 Vancouver Whitecaps FC $6,307,495*

*Does not take into account Ali Adnan’s current salary

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