Essay – ‘Are footballers overpaid?’

Assessment focuses: AF1–8


Pupils were asked to choose a controversial issue to research. They then wrote a discursive essay, with some guidance from the teacher on constructing the piece. Pupil B chose the topic of footballers' pay.

Pupil's work

Illustration of a debate on whether footballers are overpaid or not

Are footballers overpaid?Money. People earn it. £18,500,000, £17,000,000. £10,5000,000 is what David Beckham, Ronaldhino and Wayne Rooney earn in a year. Now compare this to £23,000 which is the average salary per year. Ronaldhino earns 730 times the figure. Do you think he's overpaid?However, these are three of the highest paid footballers. They're at the top of their game. Anyone who is successful in their job earns more than those who aren't. But there is a point where it is too much. The money the players earn keeps on rising. Many of these players earn more in a week than some people do in a year. Some people, David Beckham for example, earns £49,000 a day; it's more than double the average yearly salary! What could happen to make it less ridiculous?There is one reason why they earn so much. Most footballers have a career span of roughly 10 years. It is likely that they don't have many qualifications to apply for another job so the only option for more money if they don't have enough to keep them going for life is another job in football. For example; coaching, managing, commentating or becoming a pundit. There are limited spaces and hardly pay well compared to the footballers themselves.Furthermore an average premiership footballer earns £676,000, that's nearly 7 million in their career, enough to keep them going. A championship footballer earns £195,000 a year, 2 million in a career, whereas a league 1 player earns £68,000 a year. In their career they earn what a premiership footballer earns in one year. Is this fair? Is David Beckham 264 x better than these players? Should their be such a big difference and why? Where does the money come from?The bigger clubs have better sponsers which are willing to pay more money, more TV rights, more merchandise to sell. For clubs to gain more money they have to be successful. HoWeVer, the top clubs have become too competitive making it hard for the lower league clubs players to earn more money. There aren't very many solutions, but one stands out which is the salary cap. This is where there is a limit on the amount of moneys team can spend on players' salaries. 64% of premiership footballers are in favour of this and it would benefit the club by using no more than 75% of the clubs money on wages rather than (current) higher percentages.Is all this money necessary? How could it be made fair? Will it change the game if less money is there?In the end are we paying people to stand on a pitch for 90 minutes and kick a ball? Or are we paying them for quality entertainment that gives supporters pride, excitement and a passion for the game? We have to decide what football is worth to us.