Barcelona gets a $866,000 share (Getty)

(WFI) The summer in South Africa is just now paying off for many of the world’s top footballers.

FIFA has announced the payments due to 400 clubs from 55 member associations after deciding in March 2008 to allocate $40 million of the 2010 World Cup profits for just such a purpose.

“We are pleased that we can share the success of the 2010 FIFA World Cup with the clubs by providing them a share of the benefits of our flagship event, in particular to recognize their efforts in the development of young players,” FIFA president Sepp Blatter said.

The shares were distributed via FAs to the clubs of those 736 players who took part in the month-long tournament.

Each club received $1,600 per player per day for each day one of its players spent in South Africa, a period beginning two weeks before the Cup’s opener and ending the day after a team’s elimination.

“FIFA would also like to stress that in this process it was not relevant whether the player actually played or not in any given match during the final competition,” said a FIFA statement.

The Football Association (England) topped all FAs with a roughly $6 million payment, but FC Barcelona was the top-earning club with an $866,000 share.

Germany, Italy, Spain, France, Netherlands, Japan, Mexico, Portugal and Greece were the other big winners in this week’s payout.

FC Bayern Munich ($778,667), Chelsea ($762,667), Liverpool FC ($695,600) and Real Madrid ($678,133) rounded out the top five in terms of highest grossing clubs.

Some clubs not playing in their countries’ top divisions as well as some clubs from FAs whose representative teams didn’t make the 2010 World Cup will also get a share of the $40 million.

The total distributed to those 55 FAs with top-division clubs sending players to South Africa was $38,471,067.20.

Whether the remaining $1,528,932.80 will fund these extra payments was unclear from FIFA’s statement.

FIFA’s Executive Committee also voted in 2008 to allocate $70 million from the 2014 World Cup in Brazil for a similar initiative.

Vauxhall and FA Near Sponsorship Deal
Vauxhall Motors is on the brink of a partnership with the Football Association.

The FA is expected to announce the carmaker’s support next week.

Vauxhall would succeed Nationwide as the English football team’s title sponsor. The building society ended its 11-year deal earlier this year.

According to British magazine Marketing, the coming agreement could be worth upwards of $7.7 million annually.
Whether Fiat will remain the team’s official car supplier remains unclear.

MLS Timbers Near Season Ticket Sellout
The Portland Timbers are poised for a successful entry into Major League Soccer.

The USL First Division turned MLS expansion franchise announced this week that its season ticket sales have already hit 10,000 for the inaugural campaign beginning in March.

“Ten thousand is a number we were shooting for,” the club’s chief operating officer Mike Golub told “It’s a really good goal for us to meet.”

All 23 suites are sold out, and season ticket sales will be capped at 12,000.

The Timbers’ home opener isn’t until April 14 to allow for the completion of renovations to PGE Park, which will also undergo a name change ahead of the 2011 season.

By INSIDER’s Matthew Grayson

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