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Why are athletes paid so much?
How did it get to the point of paying these people millions and millions of dollars a year just to entertain us while playing a game?

I think when it comes to getting paid for anything it all depends on the free market system. On the demand and supply and the cash flow in the industry, and my gad does the sports industry have cash flow!

It is in fact one of the richest and most revenue generating industries in the entire world. The investors and campaigns and advertisement is just off the chart. So why shouldn't the people doing the active work in this get paid?

And why is that? It's because they have a product that people want. They have a product that piques peoples interest from all over the world.

Sport not only gives us an escape from our individual boring private lives, but most importantly it gives us something to cheer on; something to be a part of, something to believe in us.

It brings us together and create a sense of unity, no matter how ostensible it is sometimes. People love this. People want it. And People are willing to pay as much as needed for it.

It's also the belief they sell to us. The hope. That anything is possible in OUR lives. Are you an underrated underdog? You can rise up and face the world. You can conquer everyone and everything. You can rise up and surpass people's expectations.

You also CAN make it! You can be a star.

And for that, my friend, people are willing to pay anything. Anything! And this is what the companies amd the televisions and the advertisers bank upon. This is what they sell us: the vision.

Again, it might be ostensible or not, but either way it doesnt matter because that is EXACTLY how it is.

Now I've also wondered sometime in the past; not just why is it that these guys get paid so much? But SHOULD these guys earn so much? Is it fair to earn seven digits just cos you kick some round leather thingy around a field for ninety minute.

But in the end I agreed that of course they should.

Not only because it takes a lot of hard work and determination to get where they are; to achieve something that hundreds of millions of other people are trying to achieve, but also because given the amount of money that gets generated in that industry, it would be a travesty if they didn't earn that much.

It would be of course the greedy companies and corporations that get the bulk of it. In fact even as it is now they are the ones getting the bulk of it. So why shouldn't the hard working athletes who do the actual and quite literal running around, get paid as much as they could get.

I only wish that the athletes could do more to give back to the community that made it all possible and also try to appreciate the fans more.

A lot of them do this of course, and they're appreciated. But it would be also even more splendid should more and more decide to join in this initiative.

So there you have it, the reason athletes earn so much. I really hope this write up helps a little.

Cheers and have a nice day!



(some) Athletes are paid lots of money because they epitomize the highest level of achievement human beings are capable of.

In their respective categories some top salary athletes end up representing the best in human physical potential. If we combine that with charisma and a behavior that is deemed ideal by the society they belong to, then we have the perfect ambassadors for sports, culture, business and morality (in the best of cases). They become entertainers, sellers, mediators, motivators, models to follow. Children can end up loving athletes and caring about their lives more than they’d ever care for some people around them.

Athletes are complex human beings, exceptional physically speaking, usually with troublesome pasts that haunt them all their lives and sometimes ruin their careers. They struggle not only to be the best in their disciplines but to conform to a corporate image created by their sponsors, teams, and countries. Some of the commentators that responded before have already talked about the different kinds of contracts athletes sign that make them sort of hens that lay golden eggs, so of course, it is only fair that they get a share of those companies’ profits and if those profits happen to be in the billions, then the share will translate into obscene amounts of money the average Joe finds offensive.

The thing is, can the average person perform at the level of those super athletes who make super salaries? The answer is no. But, as we see it every day, those super salaries come at an equally super cost. Super stars live under constant pressure from their disciplines (the growing competition, the emergence of the next super star, etc.), the sponsors, the media, and their family and friends. Like other celebrities, they end up consumed by fame and often times their reign is cut short by scandals and the dwindling of their abilities, usually as a result of celebrityhood.

There is a shorter list of super athletes who survive stardom and transcend their disciplines. They become public figures, role models and even social activists. It is in those exceptional characters that the market keeps predicating the idea of super stars, but ironically that overemphasis on the promotion of a certain image, marred by the material success and distorted by extra-sports interests, tends to compromise the image of the millionaire athlete who is increasingly seen as conceited, vane, undeserving, overrated, and ultimately detrimental to the sports world.  


It is because of their popularity that drives more attraction to a product or service - an example if an athlete becomes an endorser. That thing along makes every athlete so overpaid and overrated. But that is all about business, being athlete in this time is not just about pride and winning, it is also about earning. They are paid on what they can offer beyond being an athlete. Without them, we will never have those entertainment nights, their championship pay per views and anything that generates money which at the end, they get a small cut of it. I consider them as the most lucky individuals in the world, they get to play the sport they love so much while earning what they deserve to have.


Because they make so much money for their sponsors. That implies that the more money an athlete brings to the organizer/sponsors determines how much he would get.

Broadcasting Rights

Think of the English Premier League EPL for instance. The right to air those matches are auctioned yearly. If I'm a Television operator, my bid would be based on how popular the league is among my viewers. In Nigeria, the EPL is very popular songs DSTV (the biggest broadcasting company) always pay a lot for rights to show air the matches live.

In Nigeria, the EPL is popular because of clubs like Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool and a few others. These clubs are popular because of the talented players they have on their team. Henry and Kanu made Arsenal very popular in Nigeria before they left the club

Stadium Earnings

Players also make a lot of money when they attract fans. For instance, if Messi were to play a match in Nigeria, a lot of people would want to watch the match live at the stadium regardless of the cost.

With that, it's only fair that talented players that draw in a lot of fans are compensated heavily so they can stay with the club and keep performing


First of all, there is big money in sports because it interests such vast numbers of people. Secondly, the very best athletes get paid so much because competitive sports is all about winning and all the fans want to know who's the best. The clubs can afford to pay their best athletes so much because the very best help them win and because winning championships has such vast value in the attention economy. The best athletes also have sponsorship agreements on an individual basis because they, too, are a valuable commodity in the attention economy. Ultimately, the money comes from ticket sales and from the millions of consumers who purchase the products advertised at the competitive events and by the athletes and the teams in advertising campaigns. 

Sports is one of those things that people do that has mass appeal like religion. In some countries, some sports are quasi religions like football in Brazil. 


While most will say its because they are best in their field, and I agree with them being the best in their field and working very very hard towards it, I can't help but state that not all humans are great at sports. Therefore, we look up to cheer people who are better than us in some or all areas. Cunning money minded people understand that and they want to make money out of it. Therefore they put a price to the average joe wanting to enjoy watching a game of any sports. 

The average person also has a lot of time to kill, how do you do that? By being involved in hobbies, most likely music or sports or anything outside what you do to pay your rent. So if its sports, you tend to appreciate those who play it very well as long as may you yourself are not competing with them. If its music, you get brainwashed by celebrity media that wants you to follow all the gossip about them, the clothes they wear, who they're sleeping etc. Celebrity culture is essential to money minded people profiting out of other people's talents and certain people's desire to watch their talent. The one with the love for sports should do it as long as it helps him survive. Do they deserve that much money? May be not. It's corporations brain washing people into thinking following something or talking about these celebrities is cool and you need to throw money at it. 


Athletes are paid so much because they are also making money for their sponsors. It's all about business. Most athletes are used to promote companies products and services and most people patronize such companies because of such athletes. So it's best the companies reward them for the increased patronage of their products.

athletes also earns from sales of their jerseys and sport's accessories to fans. Some of them also invest in businesses that is bringing them lots of profits. Being a famous athlete is a proof of hard work, so if such athletes are being rewarded for such hard work in the form of endorsements and robust contracts, there's nothing wrong with it. Sport is a booming business that has a very large market and the athletes are part of the beneficiaries of such large market so they have to be rich


The answer is simple that they are in demand. The business is bums on seats and the top athletes and sports stars attract huge audiences. 

Being a top athlete takes total dedication and they only have a limited window of top performances. If we look at a footballer the average career of a top professional is around 10 to 12 years depending on injuries.

In that time he or she needs to make a living o they are set for life. earnings can increase on performance through win bonuses and signing on fees with various clubs. There is additional income gained through sponsorship. Some of the sponsorship deals dwarf what they earn as their salaries. i can recall Tiger Woods getting $20 million from a credit card company per year just for putting his name against the adverts.

I think at some point we have to reach a threshold where it can't go up any more. This was spoken about funnily enough in the 1970'd when people complained that athletes were earning too much. fast forward 50 years and we are still wandering when it might end but it doesn't seem like it will for now.

As long as the demand is there and people want to be entertained then the salaries will carry on rising making them even bigger stars.

image source pepsico.com


Athletes have various ways to which they make huge some of money more than other professions. First they have sponsors who contribute large amount of money to support it activities, individuals and companies donates to it success.

Secondly, allowances are paid outside the salaries, which include health allowances due to hazard and risk, well being, clothes , feeding, lounge etc. This allowances higher the sum of their main pay.

Thirdly, the generate money from fans who come around to watch games and show support, they do this through jersey, shoes and fee they pay to be present live for the event.

Fourthly, they generate money from companies who advertise their product and services via their channel , the more the company who give out their product to be advertise, the more the income.


The world of sports has become one of the largest business land in the world. Because through the world of sports can attract almost everyone to enjoy sports games. Football is one example that has become a major magnet in attracting all people to enjoy.

Thus, when all eyes are headed here, it is certainly utilized by various business companies. In fact they were sponsored insanely by various companies. This certainly boosts the world of soccer into a very promising gold field.

The bigger the sponsor, the greater the income. Because of this, it is not surprising that soccer athletes can earn a huge income.

Maybe this is the only thing I can answer, hopefully you can develop it with other information. Thank you for the question. Good luck


Because technically they are generating so much revenue. The reason why people are paid so much is that they are also bringing a lot of money in the table.

Imagine Lebron James joining the lakers. His salary was really overwhelming. But behind that, everything gets very high.

- Stadium Attendance Tickets

- Sponsorship Package

- Jersey sales

- Jersey Sponsors

- Hype to the team?

and there's so much more in the table. If they bring a lot of business, then they should receive a compensation proportional to how much they have brought the money in.

Sports are one of the highest revenue/income generating businesses in the world without having to produce real product.


I guess those are the few who are paid so much. Most athletes who don't make the cut end up working a normal nine to five job. I guess, the ones that we see on the television that are paid so highly are the few who usually have that great of a talent to entertain the people around the world. 

Well, watching sports is a kind of way we as the new generation of the human race sit and watch gladiators battle it out except this one is rather bloodless. I guess, one of the things is that there is a sense of belonging to certain teams or individuals who represent the country or even state. I had been a coach for a volleyball team and have been involved in competitions. It's pretty thrilling to see them play especially the team your coaching. 

The teams usually need good players to make sure that the team won't look like an underdog and would at least have a chance of winning. If I was the government of a country, I would pay my athletes a lot of money too to see if I can get the country glory and put it on the world map. As we can see that some countries are well known because of their strong teams. It can actually boost the tourist to come. I would travel to the USA one day just to watch the WWE and NBA. One time I paid big bucks to watch the WWE when it came to Malaysia as it seldom does that. 

Then in the philippines, there is the PAC MAN. When he is live, I guess all of phillipines watches. 

I guess, it's the same reason why we watch movies and pay big bucks to watch the things that have been pre recorded as it is really entertaining. 

I guess, sports are going to still rack in lots of bucks for great athletes who we  can remember and will salute for the rest of our lives. 


I think Atheletes is same with artits. Their job is to entertain us. The reason why athletes get paid is that they can get profits for their clubs such as advertisements, merchandise like jersey, sponsors, etc. Even though they are bought expensive, the club will benefit more from the capital already released. The club will also benefit from ticket sales. If the club buys famous players like Messi or Ronaldo, it will make many people watch even if the ticket is expensive.

I think the cost of an athlete is very reasonable. Considering they could only play until they were 40 years old they would retire.


Considering the popularity of sports, players gained a lot of fans and they are willing to spend for their favorite players. Sports has become a huge business. Just like any aspect, either sports or entertainment, as long as the player or entertainer is popular, businessmen take advantage of them by signing the players in their team, as well as other businessmen signing them for endorsement deals.


In my little understanding the players good rewards due to economics activity generated by sports or events. The more revenue is generated by sports the more advertiser will come which means more revenue. Athlete is the person who are the main source of creating revenue that's why he gets high rewards for sports


what makes a sportsman valued so expensive? The "because" answer can vary, but the goal is only one: it gives more benefits to those who want to pay it than what is paid. Football clubs that bring in famous players, will get a return on sales of merchandise, Not to mention ticket revenues, sponsorships and television broadcasting rights that will increase.

If that is the case, it is caused by a rare talent. Just try to practice it yourself, can you kick the ball straight, or rub the ball past just one defender like them? Dead ball specialist players such as Christiano Ronaldo or David Beckham are recorded capable of shooting accurately into the goal even from a great distance. Not to mention other sports such as golf. I am still surprised, how can a golfer do a hole-in-one, insert a golf ball with just one hit. In fact, the hole is very far in the distance that is not visible to the eye. So golfers who are able to do so are given a big prize, usually a car.

Therefore, do not be jealous of Gareth Bale or Tiger Wood, whose one-minute salary to play can equal or even exceed your monthly income. That is all other than because of hard work and practice, also God's grace that we cannot ask for.