Pique, Lloris, Van Persie: 11 footballers who were rich before football


In 2019, the average salary for a Premier League footballer was £61,024.

That figure was determined by the Global Sports Salary Survey, who explored the rising sums available to the game’s elite stars.

Those at the very top of the game are set for life. Their grandkids’ grandkids will be too, most likely.

Footballers’ salaries are the topic of much debate but the percentage of players earning that sort of generational wealth is very small.

And when you consider the level of effort and dedication they have to put in to reach that level, it’s hard not to feel like they deserve some reward.

Footballers rich before they made it

Yet there are some players who didn’t have to wait until they made it in football to be wealthy.

Let’s take a look at some players, including Gerard Pique, Hugo Lloris and Patrick Bamford, who were rich before football.

Robin van Persie

Robin van Persie’s parents are both artists, which explains where his creativity came from.

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

Some would say the former Arsenal and Manchester United was also an artist – on the pitch.


Gerard Pique

Football fans were amazed at the start of 2022 when Barcelona centre-back Gerard Pique shared a screenshot of a bank transfer on social media, showing he received a payment of more than 2 million Euros in December 2021.

The Spaniard is also married to pop star Shakira, so the Pique’s aren’t short of a penny or two.

Yet he’s no stranger to financial prosperity. The Spaniard’s dad, Joan, is a lawyer and business and his mother, Montserrat, is the director of a Barcelona hospital.


Hugo Lloris

Tottenham Hotspur and France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris was born into wealth.

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

As a result of their careers, Lloris enjoyed an upper-class childhood that included daily tennis lessons.


Andrea Pirlo

The Pirlo name was well known in Brescia long before Andrea became a football legend.

His father founded a steel company in the Italian city in 1982. Juventus icon Pirlo retains a stake in the business


Patrick Bamford

Leeds United striker Patrick Bamford came from a privileged background, according to the Daily Mail, and was privately-educated at Nottingham High School.

He excelled at school, achieving 10 GCSEs, including five A*s, and even had the chance to go to Harvard University in the US.


Will Hughes

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

Little else is known about the Englishman’s upbringing, but it’s clear he didn’t want for much.


Mario Gotze

Mario Gotze’s father is the renowned professor Jurgen Gotze, who was a member of the computer science department at the prestigious Yale University in the 1990s.

It’s been suggested that Gotze was able to progress through the youth system at Borussia Dortmund thanks to his father’s influence.


Faiq Bolkiah

Introducing the world’s richest footballer.

Faiq Bolkiah is the nephew of the Sultan of Brunei, who is worth an estimated $20 billion.

You might never have heard of Bolkiah, but he joined Leicester City from Chelsea in 2016. The midfielder spent four years at Leicester but failed to make a first-team appearance for the Foxes.

Bolkiah signed for Thailand outfit Chonburi FC in December 2021.

His prestige is such that he’s even met the Queen.


Michael Doughty

Michael Doughty, who played for a list of clubs including QPR and Swindon Town before retiring at the age of 27, is the son of the late Nottingham Forest owner Nigel Doughty.

The co-chairman and co-founder of a European private equity firm, Nigel’s net worth in 2011 was estimated to be £130 million, which made him the 537th wealthiest person in the country.

Nigel passed away in 2012 having put more than £100m into Forest.


Gianluca Vialli

Chelsea hero Gianluca Vialli is the son of a self-made millionaire.

The Italian grew up in the enormous Castello di Belgioioso in Cremona, which had 60 rooms according to The Guardian.

Games of hide-and-seek must have taken a while.


Oliver Bierhoff

Former Germany forward Olivier Bierhoff earned 70 caps for his country and played for AC Milan in what was a fine career.

His work ethic likely came from his father, who was an energy company chief.

Bierhoff was made to work hard on the pitch by his dad, Dr. Rolf Bierhoff, after he returned home from training with a spotless kit.

According to the Mirror, the story goes that Dr. Bierhoff poured water on grass in the family’s garden before getting Olivier to practice diving headers on the patch after it had turned to ice.

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