You Cannot Be Serie A!

Wage figures were released yesterday for Italy’s Serie A and they certainly make interesting reading.

Most striking is the fact that the likes of AC Milan’s wage bill is less than Queens Park Rangers’ most recent figures.

Italy’s top-flight players are relative paupers compared to their Premier League counterparts. While their earning power is still incredible compared to the average man on the street, Serie A’s wages do hint at why Italian clubs are struggling in European competitions of late.

We look at what some of Serie A’s top stars are earning and what their weekly stipend would get you in England. Italy’s figures are net, while England’s wages are generally quoted before tax, so we’ve taken Italy’s 46.9% tax rate and figured out their players’ salaries before the taxman takes his hit.

Paul Pogba
The young French midfielder was criticised in some quarters when he left Manchester United for Juventus as a money-grabber. Based on his salary at the Old Lady, it seems he more likely moved for first-team football. Pogba earns £23,000 per week after tax (around £43,000 before tax). This is the equivalent of what fellow United alumni Darron Gibson earns in the treatment room at Everton or the much-derided Gabriel Obertan “earns” at Newcastle United.

Ashley Cole
The former England left-back once famously swerved off the road when he heard Arsenal were only willing to offer him a “paltry” 55 grand a week. He’ll be happy enough then with the £35,000 (£65,000 before tax) he’s receiving every week from Roma.

He’d no doubt have got a better deal if he’d remained in England, however, with players like Anderson, Steven Pienaar and the permanently crocked Abou Diaby raking in a similar wage.

Nemanja Vidic
United are certainly missing their former Serbian defender this season, but it looks like he didn’t move to Inter Milan for monetary reasons. Despite earning £50,000 (£94,000 before tax)) per week, United could certainly have matched Inter’s contract. They already pay Ashley Young an incredible £24,000 more every seven days, while Glen Johnson cashes similar amounts at Liverpool.

Andrea Pirlo
The cult Italian midfielder would grace any team in the world so it’s surprising that he hasn’t moved from Serie A as his earning power would be far greater overseas. The Juventus star gets £58,000 (£107,000 before tax) weekly, about the same as the now-departed Alvaro Negredo was earning at Manchester City or Chris Samba was at QPR.

Juan Cuadrado
It’s no surprise that the Colombian World Cup star was linked with a move away from in the summer – he was earning around £12,000 (£22,000 before tax) a week with Fiorentina. This is roughly what Aston Villa back-up keeper Shay Given is paid and slightly less than defensive duo Wes Brown and John O’Shea pull in at Sunderland.

Miroslav Klose
Despite being Lazio’s top earner last season, the World Cup’s record goalscorer nets £40,000 per week (£75,000 after tax). This figure would get you Premier League stars such as Adam Lallana, Antonio Valencia or almost a Tom Cleverley.