MLS Salaries Released
For those that do not know the MLS Players Union twice each season releases the salaries of every MLS player in a bid to publicize the fact that the majority of players in the League actually do not make a huge amount of dough. For every David Beckham and Julian de Guzman out there, there are the Oscar Cordon’s and the Demitrius Omphroy’s who get by on wages between $32,00 to $42,000, and that is not per week people, that is per year.
A large number of casual Toronto FC fans probably do not give much more than a passing thought to the MLS salary cap, the limiting and frankly somewhat arcane set of rules that clubs in this league must adhere to when building a team. Yet arguably there is no single more important thing to consider when trying to come to grips with what sort of team we have and what kind of team we can have in the future.
Here is a brief primer on the rules that every TFC supporter needs to at least have a passing knowledge of:
- The 2011 salary budget per club is set to a maximum of $2,675,000
- Only the first twenty players on the club roster count against the cap. The following players do not: Henry, Plata, Omphroy, Kocic, Gold, Borman, Cordon, Makubuya, Morgan, Stinson
- “Generation Adidas” players, signed to a special type of developmental contract do not count against the salary cap. Eric Avila is on a Generation Adidas deal for example as was Stefan Frei in previous seasons until this one.
- Homegrown players promoted through the Academy to the first team, which a club can have two per season, do not see their salaries count against the cap.
- If you trade a player to another club you can still be theoretically paying part of their salary depending on what deal you negotiate, which if you do, counts against your salary cap limit. Chad Barrett and Dwayne de Rosario are cases in point. TFC is still paying a certain portion of their respective salaries for the rest of this season.
- Designated Players, like TFC’s Julian de Guzman, only have a portion of their total salary count against the cap limit. Only the first $335,000 counts against it. If a DP is signed mid-season (like Koevermans and Frings) the cap hit is lower, a total of $167,500 of their salary would count against the cap. And you have to have at least that amount available to sign another DP
- Teams can have up to three DP’s
- The top 24 players on the roster must make at least the league minimum of $42,000 this season
- The bottom six “developmental” players must make a minimum of $32,600 this season
- “Allocation money” – obtained by trading cap space or players/roster slots with other clubs or through finishing low in the league the previous year (known as the “we suck” bonus to some) can also provide cap space over the usual limit, although these amounts only have a limited shelf life before they expire. For competitive reasons clubs guard how much allocation space they have available as a state secret… information on how much a team has is almost impossible to come by.
Here is the list as of September 1st 2011 for Toronto FC. The first number listed represents the base salary and the second represents the guaranteed compensation.
- Eric Avila $100,000 – $133,000
- Danleigh Borman – $42,000 – $42,000
- Elbekay Bouchiba – $92,004 – $92,004
- Adrian Cann – $123,996 – $132,746
- Oscar Cordon – $32,604 – $32,604
- Julian de Guzman – $1,863,996 – $1,910,746
- Terry Dunfield – $65,000 – $65,000
- Richar Eckersley – $75,000 – $90,000
- Stefan Frei – $100,000 – $155,000
- Torsten Frings – $699,996 – $1,113,662.67
- Matt Gold – $42,000 – $42,000
- Leandre Griffit – $55,000 – $55,000
- Ty Harden – $65,000 – $73,666.67
- Donell Henry – $42,000 – $42,000
- Andy Iro – $68,596 – $87,346
- Ryan Johnson – $131,250 – $131,250
- Milos Kocic – $42,000 – $42,000
- Danny Koevermans – $999,996 – $1,413,319.33
- Nicholas Lindsay – $42,000 – $43,000
- Keith Makubuya – $32,604 – $32,604
- Peri Marosevic – $80,000 – $129,000
- Javier Martina – $89,460 – $96,140.75
- Ashtone Morgan – $32,604 – $32,604
- Demitrius Omphroy – $42,000 – $42,000
- Joao Plata – $42,000 – $42,000
- Dasan Robinson – $97,500 – $100,000
- Nick Soolsma – $86,004 – $86,004
- Matt Stinson – $32,604 – $32,604
- Nathan Sturgis – $85,000 – $89,250
- Eddy Viator – $90,000 – $101,875
- Dicoy Williams – $50,004 – $50,004
- Mikael Yourassowsky – $80,004 – $81,670.67
- Gianluca Zavarise – $42,000 – $46,517.75
I must say I am very surprised that Koevermans and Frings came as cheaply as they apparently have. Kudos to Paul Mariner and company convincing these two quality players to come to Toronto on what are relatively small DP wage packages.
If you are interested in the other players in MLS here is the link for the entire list.