8 highest paid players at the World Cup
Romelu Lukaku (Twitter)
Cape Town - The 2018 Soccer World Cup kicks off on Thursday, June 14 with hosts Russia taking on Saudi Arabia at the Luzhniki Stadium.
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But ahead of the much anticipated global showpiece, Sport24 takes a look at the eight highest paid players at the tournament, according to their reported weekly earnings.
Cristiano Ronaldo was recently dethroned by Lionel Messi as the highest football earner for the 2017/18 season, while Neymar's debut season in Ligue 1 secured him a second spot on the list - despite only 20 appearances for Paris Saint-Germain due to an ankle injury.
Midfield wizard Mesut Ozil was reportedly the highest earner at Arsenal last season, after the German international put pen to paper on a new contract.
Manchester United duo Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku, who will represent title hopefuls France and Belgium, respectively, made the list alongside Luis Suarez and youngster Kylian Mbappe.
HIGHEST PAID PLAYERS AT THE WORLD CUP
1. Lionel Messi (Argentina/Barcelona) - £500 000
2. Neymar (Brazil/Paris Saint-Germain) - £445 000
3. Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal/Real Madrid) - £365 000
4. Mesut Ozil (Germany/Arsenal) - £300 000
5. Luis Suarez (Uruguay/Barcelona) - £290 000
6. Paul Pogba (France/Manchester United) - £290 000
7. Kylian Mbappe (France/Paris Saint-Germain) - £262 000
8. Romelu Lukaku (Belgium/Manchester United) - £250 000