FIFA confirm record high $7.36bn international transfer spend


FIFA confirmed on Friday that clubs spent an all-time high $7.36 billion on international transfer fees this summer, with the Saudi Pro League spending second only behind the Premier League.

The world football governing body announced in a statement that English clubs had the most expensive transfer arrivals from abroad, spending $1.98bn in 449 transfers, ahead of the Saudi Pro League who collectively spent $875 million.

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The Saudi figure, led by Neymar‘s $96m move from Paris Saint-Germain, could have been higher had Al Ittihad not failed with their $187m bid for Mohamed Salah on the Sept. 1 deadline day.

“European football continues to be the benchmark for the game globally, and the Saudi investment in the game will divert its focus towards the infrastructure, to elevate the level of Asian football,” Deloitte Sports Business Group Izzy Wray said on Friday.

The figures only relate to international transfers, omitting deals between sides in the same country, such as Declan Rice‘s move to Arsenal and Moisés Caicedo‘s move to Chelsea. The Premier League’s total spending including those deals amounted to a record £2.36bn.

French clubs spent the third most ($859m), followed by Germany ($762m), Italy ($711m) and Spain ($406m).

Meanwhile, the Bundesliga became the first league ever to receive $1bn from overseas in transfer fees in a single window.

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