NEW YORK ( Associated Press) — Chicago Fire midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri is Major League Soccer’s highest-paid player, surpassing Los Angeles FC attacker Carlos Vela.
The 30-year-old Swiss international, who joined Chicago from Lyon this season, has a base salary of $7.35 million and a total compensation of $8,153,000, according to figures released Tuesday by the Major League Soccer Players Association.
He is expected to be passed by Italian winger Lorenzo Insigne, who joined Toronto from Napoli this summer.
LA Galaxy forward Javier Hernandez started the season with $6 million, and Inter Miami striker Gonzalo Higuain took third place with a $5.1 million base and $5,793,750 in total compensation.
Toronto midfielder Alejandro Pozuelo is fourth ($3.8 million, $4,693,000), followed by New England forward Jozy Altidore ($3,706,139,$4,264,963), Atlanta forward Joseph Martinez ($3.75 million,$4,141,667), Vela ($2.25 million,$4,264,963), 4.05 million), Atlanta midfielder/forward Luiz. Araujo ($3.6 million, $3,941,667), Columbus midfielder Lucas Zellarain ($3.1 million, $3.7 million) and New England midfielder Carles Gill ($3.25 million, $3,545,833).
Atlanta has the highest payroll with guaranteed compensation of $20,999,272, followed by Galaxy at $20,128,040, Miami at $18,882,628 and New England at $18,141,886.
Salt Lake is last at $10,477,859.
The union said the average for senior roster players, not including named players, which only partially counts under a team’s salary cap, rose 10.3% to $438,728 from $397,753 in 2021.