A research group in Switzerland named the Football Observatory published a report which ranks players in order of their value. The organisation specialises in statistical analysis of football and have researched for both FIFA and UEFA in the past.
In order to calculate a player’s worth, the International Centre for Sports Studies (CIES) uses ‘key indicators’ such as age, position, contract, achievements, international status as well as performance. Results from the study have also revealed a few surprising inclusions:
THE TOP 10 MOST VALUABLE PLAYERS IN THE WORLD
- JAMES RODRIGUEZ – REAL MADRID – €68.8M
James Rodriguez is the tenth most valuable player in the world and is regarded as one of the best young players in the world. He became one of the most expensive players of all time when he swapped Monaco for Real Madrid with the French club receiving around €80m. He was the star of the 2014 World Cup where Colombia reached the quarter finals and Rodriguez received the Golden Boot as top goal-scorer with six goals.
- ALEXIS SANCHEZ – ARSENAL – €74.6M
Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez enters the list at number nine after leaving the Nou Camp for the Emirates in a £35m summer move. After a stellar World Cup with Chile, Sanchez enjoyed a similarly productive first season in England as Arsenal finished third and lifted the FA Cup. The former Udinese forward ended his debut season with 25 goals in 52 appearances and was named their Player of the Season.
- DIEGO COSTA – CHELSEA – €76.9M
Summer signing Diego Costa ranks eighth in the most valuable players in the world, leading Chelsea to the Premier League title in his first season in North London. Costa was Atletico Madrid’s key man in their title winning season before switching Spain for England. The 26 year old was set to run away with the top goal-scorer award in the Premier League until a number of injuries disrupted his progress.
- PAUL POGBA – JUVENTUS – €77.3M
Paul Pogba is worth €77.3m according to the report which would represent a significant profit after signing the Frenchman on a free transfer from Manchester United. Pogba featured in the recent Champions League final where Juventus suffered a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Barcelona. Pogba’s agent revealed that it could have been the midfielder’s final game with Barcelona and PSG interested in the 22 year old.
- RAHEEM STERLING – LIVERPOOL – €81M
Raheem Sterling is the most valuable young player with a reported worth of €81m at just 20 years of age. Sterling’s situation at Liverpool is set to dominate the summer headlines with the England international reluctant to sign a new contract at Anfield and seems adamant to leave his current employers. Liverpool will not be bullied into a sale however and any club interested in Sterling will have to fork out a huge transfer fee.
- SERGIO AGUERO – MANCHESTER CITY – €86M
Sergio Aguero was a surprising name that missed out in the PFA Team of the Season after his best season for Manchester City. The Argentine netted 26 goals for his club despite another season troubled with hamstring problems. Such injuries have prevented Aguero from fully displaying his immense talent and the former Atletico Madrid striker is now hoping the worst is behind him and has set his sights on the FIFA Ballon d’Or.
#4 – NEYMAR – BARCELONA – €98.5M
Brazilian superstar is the fourth most valuable player in the world according to the recent study. The Barcelona attacker was an integral member of the side which recently completed a historic treble under Luis Enrique. Neymar formed one of the most potent attacking trios the world has ever seen alongside Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi who bagged over 120 goals between them last season. Neymar is currently on international duty with Brazil and will hoping for further success in the Copa America.
#3 – CRISTIANO RONALDO – REAL MADRID – €124.7M
Perhaps a surprising inclusion in third is Real Madrid dynamo Cristiano Ronaldo. It’s safe to presume the vast majority of people would have predicted the top two most valuable players in the world would be the two footballers who have dominated the game over the last 7 years. The Messi/Ronaldo debate will always continue but despite beating the Argentine to the Ballon d’Or, he is not worth more than the Barcelona forward. Ronaldo enjoyed another stellar season at the Bernabeu which have left some critics wondering how Real Madrid finished trophyless despite the Portuguese international’s success. Ronaldo’s long term future has also been brought into question with a move to PSG rumoured and a return to Manchester United another possibility.
#2 – EDEN HAZARD – CHELSEA – €148.9M
PFA Player of the Year Eden Hazard pips Ronaldo to second place after his best season in England to date. Hazard was instrumental in Chelsea’s title success displaying a tremendous amount of consistency. Jose Mourinho has built his strong side around the young Belgian and at the age of 24, he is only going to get better. Many people believe Hazard will be challenging Messi and Ronaldo for the Ballon d’Or soon enough after registering 14 goals and 9 assists for the Blues this season.
#1 – LIONEL MESSI – BARCELONA – €280.8M
Barcelona’s Lionel Messi is reportedly the world’s most valuable player; worth a whopping €280.8m. After off-field problems last season, Messi is back to his brilliant best after another scintillating season in Spain. He once again spearheaded the Barcelona attack which saw him lift his 7th league title. He was magnificent in Barcelona’s Champion League triumph scoring the vital goal in sublime fashion against Bayern Munich in the semi-final. Although the Argentine missed out on the Ballon d’Or to Ronaldo last season, the world’s most valuable player looks set to win his 4th award due to another exceptional season.
THE TOP 50 MOST VALUABLE PLAYERS IN THE WORLD IN FULL
50. MIRALEM PJANIC – ROMA – €34.9M
49. AARON RAMSEY – ARSENAL – €35M
48. JORDAN HENDERSON – LIVERPOOL – €35.1M
47. DANNY WELBECK – ARSENAL – €35.3M
46. SANTI CAZORLA – ARSENAL – €35.4M
45. JEROME BOATENG – BAYERN MUNICH – €35.6M
44. ALEX OXLADE-CHAMBERLAIN – ARSENAL – €36.5M
43. YAYA TOURE – MANCHESTER CITY – €36.6M
42. ROSS BARKLEY – EVERTON – €37M
41. GONZALO HIGUIAN – NAPOLI – €37.5M
40. MESUT OZIL – ARSENAL – €37.6M
39. MANUEL NEUER – BAYERN MUNICH – €37.7M
38. THOMAS MULLER – BAYERN MUNICH – €38.8M
37. ALEXANDRE LACAZETTE – LYON – €39.1M
36. ROBERT LEWANDOWSKI – BAYERN MUNICH – €39.1M
35. NEMANJA MATIC – CHELSEA – €39.2M
34. MARCO VERRATTI – PSG – €39.4M
33. WAYNE ROONEY – MANCHESTER UNITED – €39.5M
32. KEVIN DE BRUYNE – WOLFSBURG – €40.4M
31. ANGEL DI MARIA – MANCHESTER UNITED – €40.6M
30. EDINSON CAVANI – PSG – €41.5M
29. DAVID SILVA – MANCHESTER CITY – €41.8M
28. SERGIO BUSQUETS – BARCELONA – €41.9M
27. ALVARO MORATA – JUVENTUS – €42.2M
26. WILLIAN – CHELSEA – €42.5M
25. TONI KROOS – REAL MADRID – €43.6M
24. ROMELU LUKAKU – EVERTON – €43.7M
23. CHRISTIAN ERIKSEN – TOTTENHAM – €44.2M
22. KOKE – ATLETICO MADRID – €45.3M
21. MARIO GOTZE – BAYERN MUNICH – €47.1M
20. KARIM BENZEMA – REAL MADRID – €49.1M
19. OSCAR – CHELSEA – €52.3M
18. THIBAUT COURTOIS – CHELSEA – €55.3M
17. PHILLIPE COUTINHO – LIVERPOOL – €55.5M
16. GARETH BALE – REAL MADRID – €56.4
15. HARRY KANE – TOTTENHAM – €58.9M
14. ISCO – REAL MADRID – €62.9M
13. CESC FABREGAS – CHELSEA – €64.5M
12. ANTOINE GRIEZMANN – ATLETICO MADRID – €64.9M
11. LUIS SUAREZ – BARCELONA – €66M
10. JAMES RODRIGUEZ – REAL MADRID – €68.8M
9. ALEXIS SANCHEZ – ARSENAL – €74.6M
8. DIEGO COSTA – CHELSEA – €76.9M
7. PAUL POGBA – JUVENTUS – €77.3M
6. RAHEEM STERLING – LIVERPOOL – €81M
5. SERGIO AGUERO – MANCHESTER CITY – €86M
4. NEYMAR – BARCELONA – €98.5M
3. CRISTIANO RONALDO – REAL MADRID – €124.7M
2. EDEN HAZARD – CHELSEA – €148.9M
1. LIONEL MESSI – BARCELONA – €280.8M