The Players Association released its updated salary guide for the 2023 season. Not surprisingly, newly acquired tops the list.

The champion takes home $20.4 million per season, the MLS's highest-paid player, followed by Toronto FC's Lorenzo Insigne at $15.4 million. Of course, Messi rakes in much more than his guaranteed compensation — his separate deals with TV bring in an additional $30 – $40 million.

The Argentine benefits from a share of the revenue generated by Apple TV+, which offers exclusive broadcasts of MLS matches through its Season Pass. The annual subscription is $99, while a monthly option is available for $14.99.

Messi's comprehensive annual salary ($60 – $70m) is higher than any NFL player.

MLS Top 5 Highest-Paid Players
PlayerTeamGuaranteed Salary (in million $)
Lionel MessiInter Miami20.4
Lorenzo InsigneToronto FC15.4
Xherdan ShaqiriChicago Fire8.15
Javier “” HernandezLA Galaxy7.44
Federico BernardeschiToronto FC6.3

Inter Miami tops club payroll rankings

Signing Messi compelled Inter Miami to bring in additional reinforcements. Messi's former Barcelona teammates, Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba, signed deals guaranteeing them $1.775 million and $1.25 million, respectively.

Miami's colossal wage bill instantly put them atop the league in salary rankings at $39.4 million, followed by Toronto FC at $32.3 million. Below are the MLS teams with the highest and lowest payrolls; ironically, the top three teams failed to make the playoffs. Orlando City falls to the bottom at $9.643 million, but the Lions still made the playoffs.

MLS Highest Club Payrolls
TeamPayroll (in million $)
Inter Miami39.419
Toronto FC32.293
LA Galaxy25.039
LAFC20.841
Chicago Fire20.416
Austin FC19.166
Philadelphia Union13.291
New York Red Bulls11.331
St. Louis City11.187
CF Montreal10.92
FC Cincinnati14.349
Orlando City9.643

Photos: Instagram/lorinsigneofficial, LeoMessi, Shaqiri,