Sadio Mane is Bayern’s highest paid player: why this could be a problem, football and money, transfers 2022

Winger Sadio Mane has become Bayern’s highest paid player. The German club’s newcomer will earn €22m a year before taxes. Following Mane in the payroll are the following players:

Manuel Neuer – € 21 million per year;
Thomas Muller – € 20.5 million;
Kingsley Coman and Leroy Zane – € 20 million each;
Joshua Kimmich – € 19.5 million;
Serge Gnabry – € 19 million;
Leon Goretzka – € 17 million;
Matthijs de Ligt, Lucas Hernandez, Dayot Upamecano – € 16 million each;
Marcel Sabitzer and Alphonso Davis – € 9 million each;
Nussair Mazraoui, Ryan Gravenberh and Benjamin Pavard – € 8 million each;
Jamal Musiala, Tanguy Nyanzu and Erik-Maxim Shupo-Moting – €5 million each;
Matis Tel and Buna Sarr – € 4 million each;
Paul Wanner and Josip Stanisic – € 2 million each;
Gabriel Vidovic – €1 million

What conclusions can be drawn from the list published by Bild journalist Christian Falk? The size of the Bayern payment immediately catches the eye. 11 players receive €10+ million. This is not a problem and is quite normal for a modern top football club. However, there are several worrying points.

Bayern played.  The arrogance of the club will not lead to anything good.
Bayern played. The arrogance of the club will not lead to anything good.

Mane was immediately given the highest salary in the team. Pretty reckless act.

Sadio Mane joined Bayern this summer from Liverpool for €32m plus possible bonuses (€9m). He signed a contract until the summer of 2025. The Senegalese has been playing for the English club since 2016. He won six trophies, including the Champions League and the Premier League title. Last season, the 30-year-old played 50 matches for the English club in all competitions, scoring 23 goals.

Sadio Mane

Sadio Mane

Photo: Johannes Simon/Getty Images

Bayern did not overpay for Mane. The team of Julian Nagelsmann received an elite attacking performer at their disposal. In Munich, he is called to replace striker Robert Lewandowski, who left for Barcelona.

Mane is in the top 3 contenders for the Golden Ball in all the latest media ratings. Strongly inferior to Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema, but ahead of the same Lewandowski. It is hardly possible to say that Bayern became weaker in attack. Sadio is three years younger than Robert. The Senegalese is not a classic nine, but in modern football this is not a problem. Nagelsman plans to abandon players of this type.

The problem with Mane is not Bayern’s compliance, but the salary given to the player. At Liverpool, Sadio received € 12 million. They could not offer him more. Jurgen Klopp’s team decided to invest in the renewal of Mohamed Salah, and Mane moved to Munich, where he was generously endowed with money.

Manet’s salary increased immediately by € 10 million, or almost doubled. A lot of luck for an already elderly player. But from the point of view of the team, the act is reckless.

Bayern got an amazing person.  Did you see what Manet did in Africa?
Bayern got an amazing person. Did you see what Manet did in Africa?

Bayern legends Manuel Neuer and Thomas Müller are pushed back. This can affect the mood in the team.

It is noteworthy that Mane will receive € 1-1.5 million more than the living symbols of Bayern – goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and midfielder Thomas Müller. It seems as if Sadio insisted that he be made the highest paid player on the team. Although he already received a significant increase in salary compared to the period at Liverpool.

It is unlikely that the player put forward an ultimatum for the Munich team. Rather, it was a concerted decision by the front office in the person of CEO Oliver Kahn and sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic.

Neuer, 36, and Muller, 32, are past the peak of their careers and can be considered veterans. However, all the significant successes of Bayern over the past decade are associated with them, including two victories in the Champions League (2013, 2020).

Thomas Müller and Manuel Neuer

Thomas Müller and Manuel Neuer

Photo: S. Mellar/FC Bayern via Getty Images

One of the main problems of Bayern is the lack of competition in the Bundesliga. The team won the domestic championship 10 times in a row. This plays a cruel joke on the Germans in the Champions League. Bayern are often relegated due to excessive relaxation and lack of concentration at the decisive moment of significant play-off matches. Simply because in the Bundesliga, rivals cannot impose decent resistance on the Munich side on a regular basis.

At the same time, the work ethic at Bayern has always been at a high level. Including because of a fairly fair salary hierarchy. Now it is broken. The decision to make Mane the highest paid player on the team is a real risk of breaking team chemistry.

Neuer and Müller are great professionals, loyal to Bayern. They will not deliberately decompose the atmosphere in the team due to the fact that Mane gets more. However, on a subconscious level, they can harbor a certain resentment and reduce their demands on themselves. This will definitely not have a positive effect on the motivation of other players, but rather the opposite. The authority of Manuel and Thomas in Bayern is no less than that of head coach Nagelsmann.

Team spirit can really crumble. This will not be noticeable in the Bundesliga, which Bayern should once again win without any problems. The problem runs the risk of manifesting itself in the most important matches of the playoffs of the Champions League. What prevented Manet from giving €20 million to keep him behind the honored veterans Neuer and Müller? Sadio certainly would not be poorer.

Bayern are on the move.  Even the sheikhs from Manchester City will envy the signings of the Germans
Bayern are on the move. Even the sheikhs from Manchester City will envy the signings of the Germans

What else confuses in the payment of “Bavaria”

Defender Matthijs de Ligt is Bayern’s most expensive signing of the off-season. He was bought from Juventus for € 67 + 10 million, he signed a contract until 2027. It is surprising to see that de Ligt is not even in the top 8 highest paid players on the team.

Matthijs de Ligt

Matthijs de Ligt

Photo: Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

At Juventus, Matthijs received € 9-10 million net. Bayern have increased his salary, so on a personal level the player should be satisfied. But the question still remains about the fairness of the salary hierarchy in the team. De Ligt is potentially the most important player in Bayern’s defense and the top 5 most important overall. Certainly a more stellar option than Upamecano, a similarly paid colleague in the role. Perhaps, objectively, Matthijs should earn no less than Goretzky, Gnabry, Kimmich, and maybe even Koman and Zane.

On the other hand, De Ligt still needs to prove his worth after a vague last season at Juventus. The situation with the Dutchman is not as critical as in the case of Mane, Neuer and Müller. Bayern’s payment gives a certain cause for concern with an eye on the decisive stage of the Champions League. Along with the lack of competition in the Bundesliga, this could have a detrimental effect on the performance of Nagelsmann’s team in the next season of the main European competition.

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