John Mikel Obi, Yakubu Aiyegbeni and Joseph Yobo are Nigeria’s biggest earners as they each pocket in excess of two million Euros a year.
Another top Nigerian earner in football is Spartak Moscow striker, Emmanuel Emenike. Yobo is smiling all the way to the bank because his earnings are free of tax in Turkey, unlike when he was in England with Everton.
“He’s on crazy money at Fenerbache and he is also playing week in, week out, which was not the case at Everton at a point,” a top source informed MTNFootball.com
That could well explain why several more players from Nigeria have now moved to seek their fortune there – Kalu Uche (Kasimpasa), Raheem Lawal (Adana Demirspor) and Uche Kalu (Caysur Rizespor).
“It is a good place for Nigerians to go to because the football is not bad and the money is good because it is free of any tax,” a top agent confirmed yesterday.
Yakubu has proved himself in the English Premier League by scoring double digit number of goals, season after season and so his decision to cash in on a final pay day in China, where he is reportedly on 100,000 pounds, tax free, a week. His super agent, Pini Zahavi, has even before the striker’s move to China secured his financial future for him.
Mikel is on 80,000 pounds a week at Stamford Bridge, but when he has to pay about 42 per cent of that as tax, it leaves him with a little more than 40,000 pounds a week. He also received a hefty bonus when Chelsea made history by winning their first UEFA Champions League. But again it was heavily taxed.
Emenike is also on a fabulous contract of about 2.5 million Euros a year, but in Russia he has to pay tax and that way he earns less than his national team skipper. Spartak have reportedly inserted a buy-out clause of 42 million Euros in Emenike’s contract after he extended his deal till 2016.
Defender Taye Taiwo also bagged a super deal when he signed up with Italian giants AC Milan. He was on something like 335,000 Euros a month but tax and limited playing time would have eaten deep into this little fortune. Taiwo is now on loan in Ukraine, where a player like Brown Ideye is also on a very good contract.