11 footballers who were rich before football including Hugo Lloris, Robin van Persie and Gerard Pique

Make it to the very top of football and you could be set for life.

A recent survey by the Global Sports Salary Survey found that the average Premier League footballer earns £61,024 a week, which equates to more than £3 million a year.

Footballers’ wages are the subject of much controversy but only a small percentage of aspiring players actually make it, and the hard work they are required to put in deserves some reward.

But not every player had to wait until they reached the professional ranks to be wealthy.

Some, including Hugo Lloris, Gerard Pique and Patrick Bamford, were born into money, and didn’t have to wait until they could splash the cash.

Hugo Lloris

Tottenham Hotspur and France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, who was named after the author of The Hunchback of Notre-Dame, Victor Hugo, was born into wealth.

His mother Marie is a successful lawyer and his father Luc is an investment banker.

Lloris enjoyed an upper-class childhood in which he had daily tennis lessons.

Robin van Persie

Robin van Persie regularly showcased his creativity on the football pitch, so it should come as no surprise to learn that his parents are both artists.

His father, Bob, is a successful sculptor while his mother, Jose Ras, is a painter and jewellery designer.

The former Arsenal and Manchester United striker decided to pursue a different type of artistry.

Gerard Pique

Gerard Pique has won everything there is to win with Barcelona and is married to Colombian pop star Shakira, but he’s no stranger to prosperty.

The Spaniard’s dad, Joan, is a lawyer and businessman and his mother, Montserrat, is the director of a hospital in Barcelona.

His grandad, Amador Bernabeu, is a former director at Barcelona.

Patrick Bamford

Former Chelsea striker Patrick Bamford may be playing in the Championship for Leeds United but he had the chance to go to Harvard University in the US.

Bamford is a distant relative of Joseph Bamford, the founder of JCB, and was privately-educated, studying at Nottingham High School.

The 26-year-old achieved 10 GCSEs, including five A*s. He can also play the violin to Grade 7.

Bamford was the kid at school who excelled at everything, wasn’t he?

Mario Gotze

Mario Gotze’s father is renowned professor Jurgen Gotze.

The senior Gotze currently works at Dortmund University of Technology, but in the 1990s he was a member of the computer science department at America’s prestigious Yale University.

It’s been suggested that his father’s money and influence helped Gotze progress through the youth system at Borussia Dortmund.

Andrea Pirlo

Before Andrea Pirlo became a football legend, it was his father who was doing the family name proud.

Pirlo’s father founded a steel company in Brescia in 1982 and the former Juventus midfielder retains a stake in the family business.

Oliver Bierhoff

Former Germany forward Oliver Bierhoff enjoyed a fine career, playing for AC Milan and earning 70 international caps, and he may have developed his work ethic from his father.

Dr Rolf Bierhoff, an energy company chief, ensured that his son didn’t want for much as a child.

However, he also made sure that Bierhoff worked hard on the football pitch after his boy returned home from training with a spotless kit.

The story goes that Dr Bierhoff poured water on grass in their garden before telling Oliver to practise diving headers on the patch after it turned to ice.

Gianluca Vialli

Chelsea hero Gianluca Vialli grew up in a castle that had 60 rooms. Yes, really.

The son of a self-made millionaire, Vialli grew up in the enormous Castello di Belgioioso in Cremona. He still holidays there from time to time.

Will Hughes

Will Hughes attended the same super-posh Repton School in Derbyshire as Jeremy Clarkson, Roald Dahl and Basil Rathbone.

While little else is known about the Watford midfielder’s upbringing, it’s clear that he didn’t go without.

Michael Doughty

Swindon Town midfielder Michael Doughty is the son of the late Nottingham Forest owner Nigel Doughty.

Nigel Doughty’s net worth in 2011 was estimated to be £130 million, making him the 537th wealthiest person in Britain.

The co-chairman and co-founder of a European private equity firm, Nigel put more than £100m into Forest before he passed away in 2012.

Faiq Bolkiah

Introducing Faiq Bolkiah, the world’s richest footballer.

You might never have heard of him, but Bolkiah is the nephew of the Sultan of Brunei – who is worth an estimated $20 billion.

Bolkiah joined Leicester City from Chelsea in 2016 but it’s hard to find any recent news about him, so it’s not exactly clear whether he still plays for the Foxes.

With that kind of wealth, Bolkiah could be anywhere on the planet right now.

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