Football Transfer Fee Records

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 (£))  ↓
1893Flag of Scotland Willie GrovesFlag of England West Bromwich AlbionFlag of England Aston Villa100
1904Flag of Scotland Andy McCombieFlag of England SunderlandFlag of England Newcastle United700
1905Flag of England Alf CommonFlag of England SunderlandFlag of England Middlesbrough1 000
1922Flag of England Syd PuddefootFlag of England West Ham UnitedFlag of Scotland Falkirk5 000
1922Flag of England Warney CresswellFlag of England South ShieldsFlag of England Sunderland5 500
1928Flag of England David JackFlag of England Bolton WanderersFlag of England Arsenal10 890
1932Flag of Argentina Bernabé FerreyraFlag of Argentina TigreFlag of Argentina River Plate23 000
1952Flag of Sweden Hans JeppsonFlag of Italy AtalantaFlag of Italy Napoli52 000
1954Flag of Uruguay Juan SchiaffinoFlag of Uruguay PeñarolFlag of Italy Milan72 000
1957Flag of Argentina Enrique Omar SivoriFlag of Argentina River PlateFlag of Italy Juventus93 000
1961Flag of Spain Luis SuárezFlag of Spain BarcelonaFlag of ItalyInternazionale152 000
1963Flag of Italy Angelo SormaniFlag of Italy MantovaFlag of ItalyRoma250 000
1968Flag of Italy Pietro AnastasiFlag of Italy VareseFlag of Italy Juventus500 000
1973Flag of the Netherlands Johan CruyffFlag of the Netherlands AjaxFlag of Spain Barcelona922 000
1975Flag of Italy Giuseppe SavoldiFlag of Italy BolognaFlag of Italy Napoli1 200 000
1976Flag of Italy Paolo RossiFlag of Italy JuventusFlag of Italy Vicenza1 750 000
1982Flag of Argentina Diego MaradonaFlag of Argentina Boca JuniorsFlag of Spain Barcelona3 000 000
1984Flag of Argentina Diego MaradonaFlag of Spain BarcelonaFlag of Italy Napoli5 000 000
1987Flag of the Netherlands Ruud GullitFlag of the Netherlands PSV EindhovenFlag of Italy Milan6 000 000
1990Flag of Italy Roberto BaggioFlag of Italy FiorentinaFlag of Italy Juventus8 000 000
1992Flag of France Jean-Pierre PapinFlag of France MarseilleFlag of Italy Milan10 000 000
1992Flag of Italy Gianluca VialliFlag of Italy SampdoriaFlag of Italy Juventus12 000 000
1992Flag of Italy Gianluigi LentiniFlag of Italy TorinoFlag of Italy Milan13 000 000
1996Flag of England Alan ShearerFlag of EnglandBlackburn RoversFlag of England Newcastle United15 000 000
1997Flag of Brazil RonaldoFlag of Spain BarcelonaFlag of Italy Internazionale19 500 000
1998Flag of Brazil Denílson de Oliveira AraújoFlag of Brazil São PauloFlag of Spain Real Betis21 500 000
1999Flag of Italy Christian VieriFlag of Italy LazioFlag of Italy Internazionale32 000 000
2000Flag of Argentina Hernán CrespoFlag of Italy ParmaFlag of Italy Lazio35 500 000
2000Flag of Portugal Luís FigoFlag of Spain BarcelonaFlag of Spain Real Madrid37 000 000
2001Flag of France Zinedine ZidaneFlag of Italy JuventusFlag of Spain Real Madrid46 000 000
2009Flag of Brazil KakáFlag of Italy MilanFlag of Spain Real Madrid56 000 000
2009Flag of Portugal Cristiano RonaldoFlag of England Manchester UnitedFlag of Spain Real Madrid80 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.

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