It is not unexpected that players from Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, and Chelsea make up the majority of the highest-paid XI in the Premier League.
Despite dominating the table, Arsenal don’t have any of the highest-paid players in the English premier division. Tottenham and the recently formed Newcastle United also don’t.
Football Planet assembled this starting lineup using the highest-paid players at each position from the Premier League pay table on FBref, who are set up in a 4-3-3 formation:
GK: David de Gea
The 32-year-old has been employed at Old Trafford for 11 years, and he is highly compensated. De Gea became the highest-paid goalkeeper in England after signing his most recent contract extension in 2019.
With an estimated wage of £375,000 per week, he was once the highest-paid player in the Premier League overall, but has since dropped to second.
Some people believed De Gea’s time under Erik ten Hag was numbered due to concerns about his ability to play out from the back, especially because his four-year contract was set to expire this summer.
However, the veteran ‘keeper has adjusted well and has thus far been performing at or around his peak in 2022–23. He defeated Martin Dubravka, who had been called up by parent club Newcastle, and it now seems a matter of when – rather than if – United use the one-year extension option in his current contract.
RB: Reece James
James is the sole homegrown academy alumnus in this starting lineup, and Chelsea has rewarded him for being among the top right backs in the world, let alone the Premier League.
James supposedly earns a weekly salary of £250,000, which is more than his English counterparts Kyle Walker, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Ben White, and Kieran Trippier do.
In September, the 23-year-old agreed to a massive six-year contract that would last until 2028. The Blues of Graham Potter have already suffered a great deal as a result of his injury setbacks in 2022–23.
CB: Raphael Varane
Manchester United has demonstrated that they are capable of and ready to offer lucrative salaries to successful individuals seeking the largest contracts of their careers.
Varane left the Bernabeu for Old Trafford, following in the footsteps of his former Los Blancos teammates Cristiano Ronaldo and Casemiro. At the time, United was unable to complete the Sergio Ramos transfer.
In the summer of 2021, the Frenchman joined for an alleged £41 million cost. He agreed to a four-year contract that would pay him £340,000 per week and last until 2025. No center back in the Premier League earns more.
CB: Kalidou Koulibaly
After losing Rudiger and Andreas Christensen in the summer transfer, who left Stamford Bridge for free, new owner Todd Boehly made the decision to spend big money to strengthen Chelsea’s defense.
At Napoli, Koulibaly has successfully formed himself as one of the top defenders in Europe. The question of whether spending £33 million to acquire a 31-year-old with a four-year contract and weekly pay estimated to be £295,000 is still up for debate.
For the purposes of this starting XI, we move the adaptable Man City defender to the left side of the defense.
Cancelo makes the same amount as James ($250,000 per week), which seems about appropriate given that he has established himself as one of the Premier League’s regularly dangerous full-backs. His most recent contract extension, which runs through 2027, was signed in February 2022.
For many more years to come, the Portugal international is destined to be an essential member of Pep Guardiola’s squad.
The Brazilian headed to Old Trafford in pursuit of a new challenge and the kind of big contract that Florentino Perez wasn’t willing to hand a 30-year-old after, much like Varane, he had proven everything there was to prove at the Bernabeu.
As of right now, it appears that United will benefit from Madrid’s setback. Casemiro currently appears to be an excellent and crucial part of the United first team because to Ten Hag’s patience in acclimating him gradually. Worth every penny of his £300,000 weekly salary.
N’Golo Kante of Chelsea, Bruno Fernandes of Manchester United, and Rodri of Manchester City are all supposedly paid more, but we decided that Thiago offers the finest balance for this starting lineup.
The maestro of Liverpool is only the 26th highest-paid player in the Premier League with a weekly salary of £200,000, but he leads the list of central midfielders we can picture playing with Casemiro and the league’s highest-paid player.
AMC: Kevin De Bruyne
It’s challenging to argue that De Bruyne doesn’t deserve to be the highest-paid player in the Premier League. After Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract at Manchester United expired, he claimed that title.
The Belgian has been Manchester City’s finest player over the past five seasons, winning the league title in four of those years. Due to the 31-year-current old’s contract, which extends through 2025, we anticipate seeing him breach Premier League defenses for a few more years.
RW: Mohamed Salah
Giving Salah, 30, a new deal in the summer was a deviation from the buy-low-sell-high approach that Liverpool has become known for under FSG.
However, since there were no obvious suitors prepared to pay a big transfer fee for their Egyptian King, the club decided to offer him a lucrative new contract, making him their top earner and giving him the sixth-highest income in the Premier League at £350,000 per week.
Fair enough, Salah hardly needed to do more to get it. With more than 150 goals scored throughout his first five seasons with the Reds, he won his third Premier League Golden Boot last season.
ST: Erling Haaland
A starting price of just €51 million looks like a bargain for the best goal scorer in the world.
However, Haaland is not inexpensive. Man City apparently pays £375,000 each week for his services, while Sportsmail claims that the real sum may potentially be quite a bit higher when “significant bonuses” are taken into account.
Regardless of the actual number, the Norwegian is undoubtedly the ninth highest-paid player in the Premier League. He has scored a ton of goals, so never allow it be argued that he doesn’t do what he is paid to.
LW: Jadon Sancho
Since signing with Manchester United in the summer of 2021, things for young Sancho haven’t exactly gone according to plan.
He didn’t make England’s World Cup squad, his Premier League performance is a small fraction of what it was in the Bundesliga, and now Red Devils manager Ten Hag doesn’t like him anymore.
Given his £350,00 weekly salary after joining for a £73 million fee, it is challenging to argue that the forward has shown to be excellent value. However, despite just being 22 years old, he unquestionably possesses a ton of promise. He might still live up to his price.