The phrase ‘Naija no dey carry last’ has appeared in football recently as there has been an influx of Nigerian footballers playing overseas. Football is the most popular sport in Nigeria with millions of fans supporting their clubs overseas. Nigeria has always been home to amazing football talent and with more and more amazing young footballers in recent years, the weekly salary of Nigerian footballers has been on the rise.
The huge salaries paid to Nigerian footballers come as no surprise as the impact of the players is evident in these teams. Apart from the high salaries they earn, footballers in Naija are traded for a huge sum of money. In the summer of 2020, Victor Oshimen became the most expensive African footballer of all time when he joined Napoli from Lille for an extra $80m. Hardly any top European league without a Nigerian footballer performing at a high level and earning huge salaries. A good sign for the Super Eagles as the national team is now full of great talent.
We have decided to go on an adventure to reveal the highest paid Nigerian footballers who are also featured in the best football predictions punters will find on Takebet Nigeria. We have searched all the leagues where Nigerian players compete, from European leagues such as English Premier League, Spanish La Liga, Serie A, Ligue 1, Bundesliga to other top leagues.
Let’s explore the list of highest paid Nigerian footballers.
Odion Ighalo – Striker, Al-Hilal – $170,000 (Last Acquaintance)
Odion Ighalo is one of the most popular Nigerian players. The striker became the first Nigerian international to play for Manchester United after joining the club on loan from Chinese side Shanghai Shenhua in January 2020. Odion Ighalo scored five goals in 23 appearances before returning to Shanghai Shenhua at the end of his loan.
The Nigerian international joined Saudi Arabia from Al Shabab from Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua in 2021. Ighalo has scored 10 league goals in 19 appearances for Shanghai Shenhua. Odion made his debut in 2005 and moved to Europe in 2008 where he joined Udinese. The Nigeria international joined Watford in the 2014-15 season and scored 36 league goals in 90 appearances for the club.
Odion Ighalo represented the Super Eagles in the 2018 World Cup. The Nigeria international holds the record for most goals scored in a single Africa Cup of Nations with seven goals in 2019.
Ighalo earned $170,000 a week at Al Shabab. Odion Ighalo joins Al-Hilal, another Saudi football club, after AFCON 2021. His salary at the new club is currently unknown, but the striker is sure to keep his No.1 spot.
Victor Osimhen – Striker, Napoli – $110,000
Victor Osimhen is currently one of the best strikers in Europe. The Nigeria international has been incredible for Napoli this season after a slow start to life at the Italian club. Victor Osimhen has become the most expensive African striker in history after joining Napoli from Lille in a fee of around $80m in the winter 2020 transfer.
The Napoli striker has scored 19 goals in 45 appearances for the Italian side. Osimhen enjoyed an incredible rise to fame as he couldn’t join Zulte Waregem or Club Brugge on his debut due to malaria. Victor was part of the Nigeria Under-17 team that won the 2015 FIFA U-17 World Cup. The Nigerian international won the Golden Boot of the tournament with 10 goals. He also won the Silver Ball award at the tournament.
Osimhen missed out on the 2018 World Cup squad. He made his national team debut in 2017. The Nigerian international made the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations squad and has been brilliant since then . He scored 10 goals in 18 appearances for the national team.
Victor currently plays in Napoli and earns $110,000 a week.
Wilfred Ndidi – Midfielder, Leicester City – $100,000
Wilfred Ndidi is currently one of the best defensive midfielders in the world. The Nigeria international has been amazing since joining Leicester City from Genk in the winter 2017 transfer for $20m. Ndidi has scored 10 goals in 196 appearances since joining the club.
The Nigerian international won the most tackles in the Premier League (138) in the 2017-18 season. He also had the league’s most tackles in the following season of 2018-19. Wilfred Ndidi was an important player in the side that won the 2020-21 FA Cup by beating Chelsea by a goal to nil.
Ndidi represented Nigeria in the 2016 Summer Olympics. He made the squad for the 2018 World Cup as they were knocked out in the group stage. Ndidi also represented the Super Eagles in the 2019 and 2021 Africa Cups of Nations. He has 47 caps for the Nigerian national team.
Wilfred Ndidi currently plays for Leicester City and earns $100,000 a week.
Kelechi Iheanacho – Striker, Leicester City – $80,000
Seniorman Kelz, as he is widely regarded, stepped into the limelight after an impressive outing at the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup. The Nigerian international won the Ballon d’Or as the Super Eagles won tournament. Iheanacho scored six goals during the competition winning the Silver Boot.
Kelechi Iheanacho joined Manchester City in 2015. Iheanacho scored 21 goals in 64 appearances for Manchester City as they won the English Football League Cup. The Nigerian international joined Leicester City for a fee of around $30m in the summer of 2017. Iheanacho was brilliant in the 2020-21 season scoring 12 Premier League goals surpassing his expected goals by 8 ,20.
Iheanacho represented Nigeria in the 2018 World Cup. The Leicester City striker also represented the Super Eagles in the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations. Iheanacho scored 12 goals in 42 appearances for the national team.
Kelechi Iheanacho currently plays for Leicester City and earns $80,000.
Alex Iwobi – Midfielder, Everton – $68,000
Alex Iwobi started his club career with Arsenal joining the youth team in 2004. The Nigeria international made his senior debut in 2015 for Arsenal against Sheffield on Wednesday.
Iwobi scored 15 goals in 149 appearances for Arsenal as he spent four seasons with the senior team. The Nigerian international joined Everton from Arsenal for a fee of around $45m in the summer of 2019. Iwobi won the FA Cup and two Community Shields with the Gunners. The Nigeria international has scored six goals in 80 appearances for Everton.
Alex made his international debut for Nigeria in 2015, although he started as a youth international for England. The Everton player has scored nine goals in 53 appearances for the Super Eagles. Iwobi scored the winning goal against Zambia to secure a place for the Super Eagles in the 2018 World Cup. He featured in the 2018 World Cup as Nigeria were knocked out in the group stage.
Iwobi played for the Super Eagles in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations. The Nigeria international was sent off in the Round of 16 of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations as the Super Eagles suffered a 0-1 defeat against Tunisia.
Alex Iwobi currently plays for Everton and earns $68,000.
Victor Moses – Midfielder, Spartak Moscow – $56,000
Victor Moses was a popular player among Nigerian fans after playing an important role in Chelsea’s Premier League triumph in the 2016-17 season. The Nigeria international started his club career at Crystal Palace before joining Wigan in 2010. Chelsea signed Moses in the summer of 2022 from Wigan. Moses was loaned out to Liverpool, Stoke City and West Ham United before returning for the 2016-17 season.
The Nigeria international was converted into a right-back under Antonio Conte as Chelsea won the league. Moses was then loaned out to different teams such as Fenerbache, Inter Millan and Spartak Moscow. The latter club signed the player permanently in July 2021. Victor Moses scored 18 goals in 128 appearances while playing for Chelsea. He won the Premier League, FA Cup and two UEFA Europa League titles with the Blues.
Victor Moses has scored 12 goals in 37 appearances for the Nigeria national team. The Spartak Moscow player was an important player in Nigeria’s 2013 Africa Cup of Nations triumph. Moses played for the Super Eagles in the 2014 World Cup and the 2018 World Cup where he scored a goal in the 1-2 loss to Argentina.
Victor Moses currently plays for Spartak Moscow and earns $56,000.
Moïse Simon – Winger, Nantes – $40,000
Moses Simon was Nigeria’s best player in the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations. The Nigerian international started his senior club career with AS Trencin in 2014 where he scored 17 goals in 39 appearances before joining Gent in 2015. Moses scored 21 goals in 136 appearances for Gent as he spent four seasons at the club before joining Levante. The Nigerian international won the Belgian Pro League and the Belgian Super Cup in Ghent.
Moses joined Levante on loan for the 2019-20 season with an option to buy. The deal was made permanent the following season as he signed a four-year contract. Moïse has scored 17 goals in 85 appearances for Nantes.
Simon made his debut for the Super Eagles in 2015 against Uganda. He scored six goals in 45 appearances for the national team. Simon represented Nigeria at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations and the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.
Highest Paid Nigerian Footballer FAQs
Who is Nigeria’s highest paid footballer?
Odion Ighalo is the highest paid Nigerian footballer. Ighalo joined Al Shabab from Shanghai Shenhua in January 2020, where he was paid $402,000. The Nigeria international was the first player to play for Manchester United after taking a pay cut and receiving $200,000 to join the club on loan.
The Nigerian international was paid $170,000 at Al Shabab, and it is believed he will remain in the same salary bracket at his new Saudi club, Al-Hilal, which he joins after AFCON 2021.
Who is the richest Nigerian footballer in the world?
John Obi Mikel is the richest Nigerian footballer with a net worth of around $57 million. The Nigerian international is one of the greatest footballers in the country’s history. Mike Obi made his fortune playing for Chelsea in the Premier League. He spent 11 seasons at Chelsea where he scored six goals in 372 appearances for the club. Mikel won two Premier League titles, a UEFA Champions League, a UEFA Europa League, three FA Cups, an English Football League Cup and an FA Community Shield during his time at Chelsea.
Mikel Obi is currently a free agent after his contract with Kuwait SC was terminated just four months after joining the club.
Who is the most expensive Nigerian footballer?
Victor Osimhen is the most expensive Nigerian footballer. Osimhen joined Napoli from Lille for a fee of around $80m in 2020 after scoring 18 goals in 38 appearances for the French club. The Nigerian international has scored 19 goals in 45 appearances for Napoli. Osimhen is paid $110,000 a week in Naples.