After Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure from Manchester United to join Al Nassr, the club enacted a squad-wide salary cap to prevent any feelings of jealousy among the players and it may just impact Neymar! The rule came to be known as the “Ronaldo Rule” and according to reports earlier in 2023, Manchester United players were not going to be overpaid just to be a part of the playing squad.
Cristiano Ronaldo, at the age of 37, was earning a staggering $600,000 approx. per week, surpassing the salaries of other star players such as Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford, Casemiro, and Raphael Varane, a World Cup winner. Manchester United terminated Ronaldo’s contract following a controversial interview with broadcaster Piers Morgan, where he criticized the club’s hierarchy and manager.
🚨 Manchester United have introduced a Cristiano Ronaldo rule that will stop the club from signing a player on a gigantic salary in the future.
The club want to cap the highest wages to around £200,000-a-week to help maintain the balance in the locker room.
(Source: Daily Mail) pic.twitter.com/9RWGKrjU2E
— Transfer News Live (@DeadlineDayLive) January 8, 2023
To address potential team issues, Manchester United’s chief executive Richard Arnold, director of football John Murtough, and manager Erik ten Hag reportedly introduced a squad-wide pay cap. The aim was to prevent feelings of jealousy in the dressing room, with player salaries limited to approximately $250,000 approx. per week.
David de Gea, a veteran goalkeeper earning around $470,000 approx. per week, will be out of contract this summer. If the club renews the contract with the Spaniard, they might offer him a weekly salary ranging from approximately $230,000 to $250,000.
Despite some criticism from football pundits who expressed concerns about the potential impact on top players’ salaries, the Manchester United board has reportedly made the firm decision to uphold the salary cap rule. The board believes that maintaining a harmonious atmosphere within the club is paramount, and they are determined to prevent any bad blood between them.
Gary Neville has labelled Manchester United’s reported plan to cap wages at the club to £200,000 per week as ‘strange’, as he pointed to Casemiro’s salary as a potential issue with the rule.
Do you think this will be a problem for the team and its upcoming players? pic.twitter.com/loUtA3AlKM
— 𝐊𝖊𝘃𝖎𝖓 𝐃𝐢 𝐊𝖊𝖗𝖊🍥 (@KereKevin1995) January 10, 2023
Following Ronaldo’s departure, the club implemented the salary cap to address the controversy, earning it the moniker ‘Ronaldo Rule.’ Its purpose is to ensure no player earns ‘significantly more’ than their teammates.
Potential salary reduction of Neymar under the “Ronaldo Rule”
Reports indicate that Paris Saint-Germain has listed Neymar for transfer, intending to offload him during the upcoming summer transfer window. Speculation links Neymar with a move to the Premier League, where clubs can afford his substantial salary.
According to French outlet L’Equipe, Manchester United is the front-runner among Premier League rivals, including Chelsea, in securing Neymar’s signature. Fellow Brazil international Casemiro is reportedly advocating for Neymar’s move to Manchester United under the management of Erik ten Hag. While United reportedly prefers a loan deal, PSG favors a permanent transfer.
Manchester United’s near-certain qualification for the UEFA Champions League gives them an advantage over Chelsea, currently in 12th place, in negotiations for Neymar. Despite previous Premier League transfer rumors, Neymar’s hefty wages have hindered a deal from materializing.
Manchester United have begun negotiations with PSG over Neymar, according to L’Equipe 🇧🇷 pic.twitter.com/XGOmMn3xFd
— GOAL (@goal) May 23, 2023
However, this time the outcome remains uncertain. If Neymar joins Manchester United, the club may subject him to a salary cap of approximately $250k per week, commonly known as the ‘Ronaldo Rule,’ despite his reported earnings of nearly $700k per week at PSG.
Neymar, who reportedly earns nearly $700k approx. per week according to SportsAdda, his earnings will likely see a significant reduction, possibly less than half of his current salary, with a decline of around $500k approx. per week. Neymar’s next move will require careful consideration, weighing the pursuit of European glory and Premier League football against the substantial wage sacrifice.