Transfer fees have inflated astronomically over the years with more and more money being pumped into the beautiful game.
An influx of foreign owners with huge fortunes coupled with increased TV deals and sponsorships have allowed clubs to spend lavish amounts of cash on new squad members.
The CIES Football Observatory is a research group based in Switzerland and have compiled a study into the costliest squads in world football.
Below are the top ten most expensive squads in the world…
#10 – TOTTENHAMEmbed from Getty Images
Squad Transfer Expenditure: £320m
Record Signing: Davinson Sanchez (£36m)
Tottenham head up our top ten list with their current squad costing £320m, the lowest amount of the Premier League top six last season. The Lilywhites have benefitted from the likes of Harry Kane coming through their academy while Dele Alli cost just £5m from MK Dons. Their record signing, Davinson Sanchez, arrived this summer and overtook Moussa Sissoko as their most expensive transfer.
#9 – ARSENALEmbed from Getty Images
Squad Transfer Expenditure: £369m
Record Signing: Alexandre Lacazette (£47m)
Arsenal come in at ninth in our top ten with a higher transfer expenditure than their North London rivals despite finishing four places lower in the league last season. The Gunners also broke their transfer record this summer to sign Alexandre Lacazette and have only spent more than £30m on five players. Arsene Wenger has been praised for his success with the club given their modest transfer budgets in recent years.
#8 – LIVERPOOLEmbed from Getty Images
Squad Transfer Expenditure: £387m
Record Signing: Naby Keita (£63m)
Another Premier League club enters our top ten as Liverpool place eighth with a squad expenditure of £387m. However, this figure will increase next season when club-record signing, Naby Keita, arrives next season from RB Leipzig for £63m. Under the ownership of Fenway Sports Group, Liverpool have funded their big-money signings by offloading squad players with previous record-signing, Christian Benteke, leaving after just one year at Anfield.
#7 – JUVENTUSEmbed from Getty Images
Squad Transfer Expenditure: £417m
Record Signing: Gonzalo Higuain (£80m)
Italian giants Juventus are the first non-English club to enter our top ten list having spent £417m on their current crop of players. A bulk of that total comes from the £90m they paid to prise Gonzalo Higuain from their rivals Napoli. The Old Lady have won six straight Serie A titles and reached the final of the Champions League last season were they lost to Real Madrid.
#6 – REAL MADRIDEmbed from Getty Images
Squad Transfer Expenditure: £440m
Record Signing: Gareth Bale (£90m)
It may come as a surprise to see Real Madrid only sixth on this list – making their achievements in Europe even more commendable. Los Blancos have won three of the last four Champions League tournaments with their star-studded squad. Their shrewd business in the transfer market has meant only three players (Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema) from their 15 most expensive transfers currently feature in their squad.
#5 – BARCELONA
Squad Transfer Expenditure: £557m
Record Signing: Ousmane Dembele (£94m)
Despite having a notably smaller transfer budget than their rivals Real Madrid, Barcelona have currently assembled a more expensive squad. They have enjoyed success in La Liga – winning three out of the last five league titles – and broke their transfer record this summer to bring in Ousmane Dembele from Dortmund. Barca chased a £100m deal for Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho but failed in their efforts to sign the Brazilian instead spending £35m to bring in former Tottenham midfielder, Paulinho.
#4 – CHELSEAEmbed from Getty Images
Squad Transfer Expenditure: £571m
Record Signing: Alvaro Morata (£55m)
Unsurprisingly, Chelsea feature at number four on our list with a squad expenditure of £571m funded by billionaire owner, Roman Abramovich. The Blues have broken the British transfer record on numerous occasions to sign the likes of Andriy Shevchenko and Fernando Torres and broke their club record to sign Alvaro Morata from Chelsea this summer. The signings of Tiemoue Bakayoko and Danny Drinkwater also totalled to roughly £70m.
#3 – MANCHESTER UNITEDEmbed from Getty Images
Squad Transfer Expenditure: £695m
Record Signing: Paul Pogba (£94m)
Following the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson, Manchester United have splashed over £550m into new signings – more than was spent during his 27 years at the helm of the club. They hold the British transfer record of £94m which was to bring Paul Pogba, a player they allowed to leave for free, back to the club. Recent signings of Romelu Lukaku (£75m) and Victor Lindelof (£30m) continue to show United’s financial muscle in the transfer market thanks to their vast revenues.
#2 – PARIS ST GERMAINEmbed from Getty Images
Squad Transfer Expenditure: £754m
Record Signing: Neymar (£196m)
Narrowly pipped to the first spot, Paris St Germain are the second highest spenders in the world football. Their current squad cost over £750m, funded by their Qatari owners, and they hold the current world transfer record for the £196m move for Neymar. They also shelled out enormous fees for Edinson Cavani and Angel Di Maria and could move to the top spot next year when they are forced to pay £166m for the permanent transfer of Kylian Mbappe.
#1 – MANCHESTER CITYEmbed from Getty Images
Squad Transfer Expenditure: £756m
Record Signing: Kevin De Bruyne (£66m)
It should be no surprise to see Manchester City at the top of our list, assembling a squad costing a record £756m. Their spending increased by £215m compared to 2016 as Sheikh Mansour sanctioned massive transfers for the likes of Kyle Walker, Benjamin Mendy and Bernardo Silva this summer. With Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling’s transfers fee also topping £50m, the Citizens have the most expensive squad in the world. Pep Guardiola’s men are currently unbeaten this season and have been tipped to follow in the footsteps of the Arsenal ‘Invincibles’. If City can achieve domestic and European success this season, it would have been money well spent.
THE FULL LIST CAN BE FOUND BY CLICKING HERE
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