Manchester City have the most valuable squad in the Premier League when it comes to total cost of transfer fees, closely followed by neighbors Manchester United.
Premier League clubs announced their full 25-man roster on Saturday along with the under-21 players who were eligible for selection, and it is Pep Guardiola’s roster that has the highest combined transfer value, taking a staggering £ 829.5million to put together .
City is known for spending a lot of money on the field and rarely going without a player. Developed by Txiki Begiristain and Ferran Soriano, the transfer system tends to prioritize quality across the squad and focuses on players who have not yet reached their prime.
Guardiola’s second summer as City Manager is a prime example of the transfer strategy that has resulted in three Premier League titles during his tenure, with the club prioritizing quality in numbers over one or two blockbuster signings – and added Kyle Walker, Bernardo Silva, Benjamin Mendy and Ederson added to a side that is desperately looking for reinforcements in these positions.
This led to the most impressive Premier League season to date, which ended with a record of 100 points and was the first and only club in the history of the English premier league to carry the title “Centurions”.
Critics have argued that City deviated from their model this summer, breaking the UK transfer record in taking over Jack Grealish. For the transfer bosses of Guardiola and City, however, Grealish presented a profile that made sense financially and football-wise.
At 26, Grealish under Guardiola, who has demonstrated the ability to develop world-class aspiring English talent, has tremendous room for improvement and is expanding City’s native quota with stricter changes to restrictions that may be around the corner after Brexit.
Close behind City is United, who, according to DataWrapper, have spent a total of £ 778.7 million in transfer fees on their squad.
Strengthened by the summer signings of Cristiano Ronaldo, Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane, United now have a squad of the quality to seriously challenge City, Chelsea and Liverpool for the Premier League title.
Their signings were in action as Newcastle United were beaten 4-1 at Old Trafford on Saturday and Ronaldo hit the net twice on his second debut. The Portuguese star has been joined on the pitch by mega-earners Paul Pogba and Harry Maguire, whose massive transfer fees make up £ 169m of the total.
United fans had hoped for another defensive midfielder signing this summer, with Declan Rice and Aurelien Tchouameni late in the transfer rumors.
If Ole Gunnar Solskjaer signed Rice – allegedly the first choice of the Norwegian – United would certainly advance in the “most valuable” table over City. Any deal for the West Ham United midfielder is expected to bring back United United by a figure on the order of £ 100m, but many fans believe he is the missing piece to enable the Reds to reach their potential.
Chelsea and Liverpool complete the top 4 of the “most valuable” table, followed closely by Arsenal in fifth.