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Football Transfer Fee Records

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Football transfer fees are always the subject of heated debate – is a club spending too much, are they spending too little, is the player worth 80m, or is he a steal at 5m?

Here’s a look at the players who have, at one time or another, held the title of ‘most expensive footballer ever’.

World Football Transfer Record

All prices are in British pounds.


Year  ↓ Player  ↓ From  ↓ To  ↓ Fee (Pounds sterling (£))  ↓
1893 Flag of Scotland Willie Groves Flag of England West Bromwich Albion Flag of England Aston Villa 100
1904 Flag of Scotland Andy McCombie Flag of England Sunderland Flag of England Newcastle United 700
1905 Flag of England Alf Common Flag of England Sunderland Flag of England Middlesbrough 1 000
1922 Flag of England Syd Puddefoot Flag of England West Ham United Flag of Scotland Falkirk 5 000
1922 Flag of England Warney Cresswell Flag of England South Shields Flag of England Sunderland 5 500
1928 Flag of England David Jack Flag of England Bolton Wanderers Flag of England Arsenal 10 890
1932 Flag of Argentina Bernabé Ferreyra Flag of Argentina Tigre Flag of Argentina River Plate 23 000
1952 Flag of Sweden Hans Jeppson Flag of Italy Atalanta Flag of Italy Napoli 52 000
1954 Flag of Uruguay Juan Schiaffino Flag of Uruguay Peñarol Flag of Italy Milan 72 000
1957 Flag of Argentina Enrique Omar Sivori Flag of Argentina River Plate Flag of Italy Juventus 93 000
1961 Flag of Spain Luis Suárez Flag of Spain Barcelona Flag of Italy Internazionale 152 000
1963 Flag of Italy Angelo Sormani Flag of Italy Mantova Flag of Italy Roma 250 000
1968 Flag of Italy Pietro Anastasi Flag of Italy Varese Flag of Italy Juventus 500 000
1973 Flag of the Netherlands Johan Cruyff Flag of the Netherlands Ajax Flag of Spain Barcelona 922 000
1975 Flag of Italy Giuseppe Savoldi Flag of Italy Bologna Flag of Italy Napoli 1 200 000
1976 Flag of Italy Paolo Rossi Flag of Italy Juventus Flag of Italy Vicenza 1 750 000
1982 Flag of Argentina Diego Maradona Flag of Argentina Boca Juniors Flag of Spain Barcelona 3 000 000
1984 Flag of Argentina Diego Maradona Flag of Spain Barcelona Flag of Italy Napoli 5 000 000
1987 Flag of the Netherlands Ruud Gullit Flag of the Netherlands PSV Eindhoven Flag of Italy Milan 6 000 000
1990 Flag of Italy Roberto Baggio Flag of Italy Fiorentina Flag of Italy Juventus 8 000 000
1992 Flag of France Jean-Pierre Papin Flag of France Marseille Flag of Italy Milan 10 000 000
1992 Flag of Italy Gianluca Vialli Flag of Italy Sampdoria Flag of Italy Juventus 12 000 000
1992 Flag of Italy Gianluigi Lentini Flag of Italy Torino Flag of Italy Milan 13 000 000
1996 Flag of England Alan Shearer Flag of England Blackburn Rovers Flag of England Newcastle United 15 000 000
1997 Flag of Brazil Ronaldo Flag of Spain Barcelona Flag of Italy Internazionale 19 500 000
1998 Flag of Brazil Denílson de Oliveira Araújo Flag of Brazil São Paulo Flag of Spain Real Betis 21 500 000
1999 Flag of Italy Christian Vieri Flag of Italy Lazio Flag of Italy Internazionale 32 000 000
2000 Flag of Argentina Hernán Crespo Flag of Italy Parma Flag of Italy Lazio 35 500 000
2000 Flag of Portugal Luís Figo Flag of Spain Barcelona Flag of Spain Real Madrid 37 000 000
2001 Flag of France Zinedine Zidane Flag of Italy Juventus Flag of Spain Real Madrid 46 000 000
2009 Flag of Brazil Kaká Flag of Italy Milan Flag of Spain Real Madrid 56 000 000
2009 Flag of Portugal Cristiano Ronaldo Flag of England Manchester United Flag of Spain Real Madrid 80 000 000

If you want to see the top 10 most expensive players in football (and the top 10 most expensive players in England), check out this article:

Most Expensive Transfers in Football.

World Cup 2006 Predictions
Rooney’s metatarsal scan today

Comments (11)

  1. Great Moves for Chelsea…
    Coz, Chelsea have need a scorrer..
    Recently Chelsea was going to One man Army(Lampard).
    Realy great Moves for Andriy Shevchenko.
    Now Need another moves like as Tevez.
    Tevez can give Strong Support for Shevchenko.
    Tevez is Hard Worker Footballer for All Field.
    I think JM Will be Finish This Transfer.
    Coz This Session Chelsea needs 4 Trophy..
    Specialy 2 Trophy (EPL) && Champions Cup.

    Go Ahed JM….
    Go Ahed….

    Also Chelsea have need One Attacking Full Back Like As
    Sorin(Argentina),Lahm(Germany),Roberto Carlos(Brazil).

    Thanks

  2. (1) As for Chelsea doing fine for the injury season the have had, we just need three players as everyone know that the defense has be breached so Alex will be falling in which will give Terry the chance to get back to 100%, and also a right back will be brought in as teams have broken in through that position Richards (Man City),Miguel Ricardo Costa (FC Porto) leaving the club in defense would be the worst player to wear a blue shirt K Boulahrouz, and as age has caught up with him Geremi will follow as well. The midfield just to let you all know Lampard will not be going anywhere C Makelele will leave us this season as he also has gotten old but he has served us well, the midfield is ok but if JM (Manager) decides to spice it up a bit Ricardo Quaresma (Fc Porto) Deco (Barca) all Portuguese so he has the talk as he is highly rated in Portugal but if not we are fine Ballack ankle injury have been sorted out that why he was so sloopy the season if its the sane he will be sent home no time for set backs. I am out of space see next posting.

  3. Q)With the current slump in transfer market prices, I doubt that anyone would command a 30 mil fee like before. Ronaldinho and Rooney both would, but it’s very, very difficult to see them leaving their clubs.

    Who do you think could command such a big transfer fee, regardless of whether they would be let go or not?

    Stevie G & Samuel Eto would easily command the 30mm fee.
    Rooney is not worth 30mm & I dont know who would pay that for him outside of Newcastle.

  4. Here are most of the players that would demand £30 mil or more:

    Ronaldinho, Kaka, C. Ronaldo, Eto’o, Drogba, Messi… that’s it. None of them will leave their clubs this summer.

    For a little less you can get the likes of Rooney, David Villa, Torres, Gerrard, Essien…maybe a few more.

    The rest are cheaper, but there are plenty of millions to spend even on half-decent players.

  5. What are you talking about? The likes of Steven Gerrard, Rooney, Essien would all command well over the £30 million mark! Rooney and Stevie G are without a doubt up there with the best and would not be sold without a record-breaking fee!

  6. Forza Juventus!… Still holding the record on selling a player for the biggest price.. :D
    And alsot the biggest price for a goalkeeper..!!

  7. Lets focus on the winter transfer window.

    Riquelme, Diego are sure to move. Chelsea are working desperately after a striker. Their primary targets are David Villa and Eto’o. Ronaldinho is on the verge of moving with Bojan Kirkic and Dos Santos ready to replace him. Than Chelsea will break their bank.

  8. I do not know why the Barca boss would not leave eto to go to england and exercise his talents rather than still putting in one year for the catalans.This is rather unfortunate for the golden African Boy.

  9. Wel u guys are sayin trash rooney is nt demanding n nt livin his fathers club so man u only nid 2 sel batov n sm ok as 4 nani he stil gt tym 2 shine

  10. New Liverpool manager Hodgson Must Allow gerrard to play in his natural position as a support to striker torres

  11. Steven g is not a playmaker an that’s what Liverpool need a playmaker