Sebastian Giovinco tops Major League Soccer with a salary of $7,115,556 US this season with Toronto FC teammate and captain Michael Bradley second at $6.5 million.
The figures were released Thursday by the MLS Players Association.
Orlando’s Kaka, now retired, had led the league in recent years when it came to paycheque. The Brazilian made $7,167,500 last season. Giovinco received the same pay last year as this season.
Los Angeles FC forward Carlos Vela was third in the 2018 salary standings at $6,292,500. Chicago Fire midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger ($6.1 million) and Los Angeles Galaxy forward Giovani dos Santos ($6 million) round out the top five.
Montreal midfielder Ignacio Piatti is No. 8 on the list at $4,713,333, just behind Toronto’s Jozy Altidore ($5 million) and New York City FC’s David Villa ($5.61 million). The top earner on the Vancouver Whitecaps is striker Kei Kamara at $1 million.
In all there are 46 millionaires on the list. Forty-seven if someone gives D.C. United midfielder Zoltan Stieber four cents — he’s listed at $999,999.96.
The millionaire club includes five Toronto FC players — designated players Giovinco, Bradley and Altidore plus Spanish midfielders Victor Vazquez ($1.5 million) and Ager Aketxe ($1.295 million).
Defender Gregory van der Wiel, like Aketxe a new addition this season, is making $835,000. At $221,312, backup goalkeeper Clint Irwin makes more than twice what (younger) starter Alex Bono ($102,200) gets.
Alejandro Silva ($800,040) is second to Piatti on Montreal’s pay scale, just ahead of fellow midfielder Taider Saphir ($800,000).
Brek Shea is No. 2 in Vancouver at $745,000, ahead of fellow midfielders Aly Ghazal ($700,566) and Efrain Juarez ($619,833).
Like Toronto, the Los Angeles Galaxy has five players making in the millions with Giovani dos Santos ($6 million), brother Jonathan dos Santos ($2 million), Romain Alessandrini ($1,869,996), Zlatan Ibrahimovic ($1.5 million) and Jorgen Skjelvik ($1 million).
The highest-paid goakeeper is Colorado’s Tim Howard at $2.475 million, No. 9 on the league list.