When Zltan Ibrahimovic signed his monster deal with Paris Saint-Germain this summer, his contract became the global benchmark for the rest of the world’s football stars.
An ironically, first in line to negotiate new deals after Ibra’s record breaking contract are the two best players in the world; Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
Ibrahimovic’s agent Mino Raiola negotiated a monster three year deal with PSG at €12.5 million net a year, with target bonuses from €2 million up to a maximum of €14.5 million net.
Now Ibrahimovic’s contract is net, so his deal will cost PSG €22.1 million, plus whatever bonuses he obtains in year one. In year two and three, it will cost PSG €25.3 million a year plus bonuses. So at a minimum, Ibra will cost PSG about €73 million in wages over three years.
Adding on repayments for the €20 million transfer fee to Milan, Ibrahimovic will cost PSG a mind blowing €93 million over three years.
Ronaldo’s and Messi’s agents are focusing on Ibrahimovic’s wages and not that of Samuel Eto’o at Anzhi, because they realize that his wages are inflated because Anzhi were willing to pay him whatever he wanted to move to a lower league.
So what does Ibra’s contract mean for Ronaldo and Messi? Currently Ronaldo’s contract takes advantage of the Beckham Law, by reducing the amount of gross tax he pays. He has two more years at a 24% tax rate and the final one is at the current rate of rate of 52%.
By agreeing to a new deal, Real Madrid would lose the Beckham Law tax break, which means that Ronaldo’s waged would immediately be 28% more expensive than they are now, before taking into account any pay increase he gets.
Ronaldo currently costs Real Madrid €12.4 million a year in gross wages, plus the annual repayments for the €96 million transfer fee to Manchester United. It would cost Madrid €22.4 million to match Ibrahimovic’s wages. That is more than €10 million more per year and the wages of one superstar. That is a huge increase and I am not sure if Real Madrid will be willing to go that high.
Over at Barçalona, the situation is a little better as Messi’s current contract is not covered by the Beckham Law, because he is not a worker who came to Spain to generate wealth.
So on Messi’s net wages of €10.5 million a year, Barça pays tax contributions of 53% putting his his annual cost is €15.9 million, plus bonuses.
So putting Messi on the same level with Ibra would cost Barça another €6.5 million a year, a sizeable amount, but reachable.