2022 MLS salaries: Who are the highest paid MLS players?
We reveal the top 10 highest paid players in Major League Soccer for the 2022 season, with LAFC forward Carlos Vela topping the list.
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1. Carlos Vela | Los Angeles FC | $6.3m
The highest paid player in MLS for the 2022 season is LAFC captain Carlos Vela, who is set to earn $6.3m in guaranteed compensation this year, according to the list released by the MLSPA.
The Mexico international, who is set for his fifth season in the league with the MLS Cup favorites, will earn $4.5m in base salary and $1.8m in bonuses.
Vela has been one of the best players in MLS since his arrival in 2018, winning a Golden Boot, MVP and two All-Star berths alongside the Supporters’ Shield in 2019.
2. Javier Hernandez | Los Angeles Galaxy | $6m
The second highest paid player in MLS this year is LA Galaxy striker Javier Hernandez.
Also a Mexico international, ‘Chicharito’ will earn $6m in guaranteed compensation for the 2022 season, all coming from his base salary.
Hernandez was one of the top scorers in the league last year, his first in MLS, netting 17 goals as the Galaxy missed out on the playoffs.
3. Gonzalo Higuain | Inter Miami | $5.8m
Next on the list of biggest earners in MLS is former Real Madrid striker Gonzalo Higuain, who joined expansion franchise Inter Miami last season.
The Argentina international, one of Europe’s most prolific goalscorers over the past 10 years, is set to earn $5.8m in guaranteed compensation in 2022.
That includes $5.1m in base salary and $700k in bonuses.
4. Alejandro Pozuelo | Toronto FC | $4.7m
The fourth highest paid player in MLS for the current season is Toronto FC midfielder Alejandro Pozuelo, who will make $4.7m in total compensation.
The Spaniard, signed for Toronto in 2019 as a replacement for Sebastian Giovinco, has been one of the league’s best players since his arrival, winning MVP in his second season.
Pozuelo’s contract sees him earn $3.8m in base salary with $900k in bonuses.
5. Luiz Araujo | Atlanta United | $3.94m
Luiz Araujo is the fifth biggest earner in MLS for the 2022 season, with the Atlanta United winger earning $3.9m in guaranteed compensation.
Araujo is relatively new to the league, having joined Atlanta in the middle of last season from Lille. He went on to score four goals and create a further three in 15 appearances.
The Brazilian has a base salary of $3.6m and will earn a further £340k in bonuses this season.
6. Josef Martinez | Atlanta United | $3.89m
Araujo’s Atlanta teammate Josef Martinez comes in just behind him on the list, with guaranteed compensation of $3.89m.
Martinez’s base salary of $3.5m is supplemented by $390k in bonuses to make him the sixth highest earner in MLS.
The Venezuelan will be looking to rediscover the form that saw him score 31 and 27 goals in consecutive seasons between 2018 and 2019, earning Atlanta their first MLS Cup and Martinez the MVP, Golden Boot, All-Star Game MVP and MLS Cup MVP.
7. Jozy Altidore | New England Revolution | $3.6m
USMNT legend Altidore will play for a new team in 2022 following his move from Toronto FC to New England, and comes in as the seventh highest earner in the league in 2022.
The Florida native won the MLS Cup with Toronto in 2017 but was made a free agent in the offseason after scoring just four goals last year.
The 115-cap USA international will earn $2.2m in base salary with a big signing-on bonus taking his total earnings to $3.6m for 2022, and will be hoping to win his second championship, with his new team featuring in our MLS Cup picks.
8. Maxi Moralez | New York City FC | $3.3m
Defending MLS Cup champion Maxi Moralez is the eighth highest earner this year, with the NYCFC midfielder guaranteed $3.3m.
The Argentine has a base salary of $2.5m, with bonuses of around $800k adding to his earnings.
Moralez has played for New York since 2017, and has been an ever-present since then, racking up 158 appearances for the franchise.
9. Victor Wanyama | CF Montreal | $3.1m
CF Montreal midfielder Victor Wanyama is next on the list, with a base salary of $2.4m and $700k in bonuses taking his total earnings to $3.1m.
The former Premier League midfielder, who previously played for Tottenham Hotspur and Southampton, joined Montreal as a designated player in March 2020.
He turned out 27 times last season as Montreal missed out on the playoffs but qualified for the CONCACAF Champions League with victory in the Canadian Championship.
10. Carles Gil | New England Revolution | $3m
The 2021 MLS MVP rounds off the list of highest earners, with Gil set to make around $3m in guaranteed compensation.
The Spaniard starred for the Revolution last season as they romped to their first Supporters’ Shield but fell short in the playoffs, losing to eventual champions NYCFC in the Conference Semifinals.
The New England captain has proved he is a cut above most in the league, notching 18 assists on his way to the MVP last season.