2016 MLSPU Salaries Released: Who's Making What?

It's the most wonderful time of the year for armchair General Managers. It's Christmas in May for people that like to complain about how poorly managed their favorite club is, and it's the most of holy of days for those of you that enjoy being completely frustrated trying to work out the amount of salary cap space a team has left. That's right. It's the first release of 2016's salary numbers and that means that we're going to do some judging. 

For the purposes of this article, we've used the "guaranteed compensation" number instead of the base annual salary. The numbers that we've been given here are probably not always reflective of the amounts that given teams are actually paying the players. For example, it's understood that TFC is probably paying some or nearly all of Herculez Gomez' salary while he suits up for Seattle. 

The fact of the matter is, that there are probably facts, figures, or contractual conditions that may or may not reflect the actual amount these players see on their paychecks, but it's the best we got and so it's what we're going to go with.

Let's start with some fun math we figured out:

  •  RSL’s very formidable attacking trio of Yura Movsisyan, Joao Plata, and Juan "Burrito" Martinez are only making a combined $1.8 Million. That’s about half of what Clint Dempsey makes.
     
  •  Jordan Morris, aka the ‘Highest Paid Homegrown Player in League History’ is making $190,000. Which is less than the rumored amounts of $200,000+,  but more than last year's rookie of the year Cyle Larin who holds the all time record for scoring in a rookie season ($177,000).
     
  •  FRANK LAMPARD IS MAKING SIX MILLION DOLLARS this season. To put that in some perspective, Frank made six million dollars last season as well. If Frank doesn't make another appearance for NYCFC by the time his contract runs out he will have made a whopping 1.2 million dollars per appearance. Interestingly enough, this is approximately what Taylor Swift charges per appearance as well. Frank is obviously a player with a storied career, but for that kind of money we'll take Tay-Tay any day. 
     
  •  Dallas doesn’t have a player making over $700,000. Remarkable.
     
  •  The Los Angeles Galaxy have six players over the MLS Cap Limit, and only one of them is a HGP. That’s impressive cap-wizardry from Bruce Arena. (Allocation, TAM trade-ins)
     
  • Only 23 MLS players are being paid over $1,000,000.
     
  •  Tsubasa Endoh is the player making the least amount of money ($51,500) to score a goal this season.
     
  •  Gilberto is getting paid 1.1 million for one assist.
     
  •  Fanendo Adi’s goals are currently worth $89,000 a piece. Wondo, $100,000. Giovinco... $889,444.
     
  •  Sean Johnson sat on the bench, making $7,352/gm until Wednesday night when he started. Matt Lampson, $2,117/gm, Started the first nine.
  •  Alvaro Saborio is DC’s highest paid player, yet 69th overall in base salary. Dallas, the lowest paid team, has two players on higher salaries. Every other team has 3-6 players at or above Saborio’s pay.
     
  • Tim Howard is the highest paid goalkeeper ($2.57 million), and Liam Ridgewell is the highest paid Defender ($1.25 million).

Let's move on and look at some graphs. There isn't going to be a lot that's too surprising here. Toronto, NYCFC, and LA continue to way outspend even the teams in the second tier of spending like Orlando and Seattle. 

Total Payrolls per Club

Total Payrolls per Club

This next graph takes a look at payroll changes between last year and the current season: 

Colorado increased spending significantly and it appears to be paying off very nicely. 

Colorado increased spending significantly and it appears to be paying off very nicely. 

I hope you like graphs, because we've got some more graphs for you! Let's break it down positionally!

Here's what teams are spending on defensive positions (DM, D, GK). 

Colorado and Portland are spending bigger due to Tim Howard and Liam Ridgewell.

Colorado and Portland are spending bigger due to Tim Howard and Liam Ridgewell.

Now let's look at team spending on offense. 

FC Dallas continues to impress with what they're getting per dollar spent. 

FC Dallas continues to impress with what they're getting per dollar spent. 

 

Finally let's take a look at a fascinating break down which shows how much teams are currently spending on points. Furthermore, just for fun, we went ahead and projected the points out for the rest of the season utilizing team's current Points Per Game and projected how much they may be spending come the end of the season. Currently FC Dallas is absolutely dominating in the dollars per point rating. Toronto is currently spending the most per point, but after spending much of the season on the road, that trend should presumably start to improve over the next couple of months. 

Poor Chicago. They haven't spent a lot, but they haven't got too many points either. 

Poor Chicago. They haven't spent a lot, but they haven't got too many points either. 

We hope that you enjoyed overanalyzing these figures as much as we have. We will update these charts as we get the newest salary information from the Players Union later this season.