Mystery solved: How much referees and players are set to earn during the World Cup

Portugal's Pepe (3) argues with referee Milorad Mazic from Serbia during the group G World Cup soccer match between Germany and Portugal at the Arena Fonte Nova in Salvador, Brazil, Monday, June 16, 2014. (AP Photo/Paulo Duarte)

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A paycheck at the end of the week is something all employees look forward to, but what can players and referees—who will have all eyes on them on the world’s biggest stage—expect to see on their checks? Well, one might be surprised.

Referees can make up to $50,000 for the month-long tournament, but only about ten official are expected to make this amount. In reality, the figure is relatively smaller (in 2006, most were paid $35,000) for each referee based on experience and fitness as well as which games they are in charge of officiating.

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When it comes to players however, the variation is more significant, dependent on the type of player and what team he plays for.

However, each team is guaranteed $8 million dollars just for making it to Brazil -- a number decided by FIFA, and the same amount that teams received for making it to the World Cup in South Africa in 2010.

So what is the average salary for everyone else?

It was reported that the U.S. players would each be looking at getting at least $76,000. The Aussies are each set to make $150,000 total when you take into account the match fees and prize money for being in the competition, regardless of results. Cameroonian players didn’t seem to be satisfied with the amount they were being paid, delaying their flight to Brazil and forcing their federation to take out a loan that increased their salaries by $12,000.

Of course, each team’s salary choice is their decision considering FIFA allows individual salary caps for each nation. The same goes for the amount that each nation will pay its players for the amount of matches they play, whether or not they advance to the next round or if they actually win the tournament (the English Federation is set to pay their players almost $700,000 if they lift up the cup).

The bottom line: it depends.

Needless to say, there won’t be a single player or official involved in the tournament who will be going home empty-handed (you know… money-wise).

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