The transfer window is upon us and if recent trends in the market are anything to go by we could be about to see some of the most expensive transfers in history!
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Before we see any more spending records broken this summer, here are the 10 most expensive transfers in footballing history to date.
12. Luiz Suarez – €82.3m
After an incredible final year at Liverpool saw the Merseyside club go close in the Premier League in 2013-14, Suarez was a popular target in the 2014 transfer market. After the being handed a four-month ban for another bite while representing Uruguay at the 2014 World Cup, Barcelona would eventually snap up the talismanic striker.
11. Romelu Lukaku – €83m
When the big Belgian announced he would not be extending his stay at Goodison Park in May 2017, he put many of Europe’s biggest clubs on red alert. 25 league goals for Rom last season is a testament to the prolific striker he has become.
Naturally, such an amount of goals warrant a very sizeable price tag, and it was Manchester United who would ultimately pay an initial fee of £75 million to get their man. Will he live up to the billing? Only time will tell.
10. Virgil Van Dijk – €84.5m
On the 27th of December 2017, Virgil was signed by Liverpool from Southampton for a fee of over £75m which is to date the world record fee for a defender.
He scored on his debut in the Merseyside derby which proved to be the winning goal. Can he prove his worth all season?
9. Gonzalo Higuain – €90m
In the summer of 2016, Juventus made a huge splash by buying Argentine striker Gonzalo Higuain from Serie A side Napoli. Higuain immediately topped the charts of most expensive transfers in Italian history, coming off a season where he broke a 66-year old Serie A record for most goals, netting 36 times.
8. Cristiano Ronaldo – €100m
When Real Madrid offered a world-record fee for the Portuguese star in 2009, United felt they had no choice but to take the money and run.
In July 2018 after an very fruitful 9 years at Real Madrid, Ronaldo joined Juventus after the Italian club agreed a €100m (£88.3m) fee for the Portugal forward.
= 8. Gareth Bale – €100m
After setting the Premier League alight for Tottenham, it was inevitable that a player of Bale’s calibre would leave the north London outfit behind. This was the sports’ worst kept secret for close to six months, and Manchester United is rumored to have been thinly outbid by Madrid for the services of the Welsh star. ultimately, he chose to join Los Blancos.
=7. Paul Pogba – €105m
After letting an 18-year-old Pogba leave Manchester for Turin for free in the summer of 2012, the young French midfielder would develop into one of football’s hottest prospects. Unsurprisingly, when United decided to try and bring Pogba back to North England, Juventus’ asking price was a world record fee and a figure worthy of topping our list of the most expensive transfers in footballing history.
=6. Ousmane Dembele – €105 million
The Frenchman would make his name known to footballing fans around the world as he dazzled the Dortmund fans. His performances didn’t go unnoticed by the national side’s manager Didier Deschamps, and Dembele has since been capped seven times for France since 2016.
His move to Barcelona on August 28th was not only one of the most expensive transfers of 2017 but is also the joint-2nd most expensive signing of all time.
5. Antoine Griezmann – Barcelona – €120
In July 2019 Griezmann’s lawyer completed a £107m (€120m) move to Barcelona in a five-year deal.
In a transfer full of twists and plots, Atletico are claim they are due another £72m (€80m), which would take the price up to £179m (€200m), due to Barcelona’s alleged premature negotiations before the release clause dropped in July.
4. Philippe Coutinho – Barcelona – €120 million (Plus bonuses)
On 6 January 2018, Liverpool confirmed that they had reached an agreement with La Liga club Barcelona for the transfer of Coutinho. His transfer fee is reported to be an initial £106 million, which could rise to £142 million with various clauses being met. Very good business from Liverpool who made over £100m profit on the player.
3. Joao Felix – Atletico Madrid – €126m
In July 2019 and after only one season at the top level, 19 year old Joao Felix has moved to Atletico Madrid from Benfica. The fourth most expensive transfer deal of all time – Portugal international Felix, made his first-team debut for Benfica last season, helping the Lisbon side win the Portuguese league title with 15 goals and seven assists in 21 starts. The remarkable teenager became the youngest player to score a Europa League hat-trick in a 4-2 win over Eintracht Frankfurt.
2. Kylian Mbappe – Monaco to PSG – €145m
The 2018 record goes to Mbappe, but it was actually negotiated in 2017. The Frenchman was technically on loan in the French capital last season, but the huge fee was an obligation this year, unless PSG had got relegated!
1. Neymar Jr. – Paris Saint-Germain – €220 million
Probably the biggest shock of any transfer window in recent memory, Qatar-fuelled PSG activated Neymar’s €222 million release clause, entitling them to bypass the Barcelona board and speak directly to the player about a possible transfer to the French capital.
One-third of the deadly MSN strike-force, many believed the move would never happen, and even after Neymar agreed to leave the Catalan giants it appeared La Liga would not accept the world-record smashing fee as it did not comply with FIFA’a “Financial Fair Play” rules.
However, after much legal debate and negotiation, Neymar’s move was finalised and in becoming PSG’s new No. 10, he also became the most expensive transfer in the history of the sport by an incredible margin of £110 million.
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