Arsenal dominate top ten net spenders in Europe since 2020 but Spurs not far behind

Date published: Tuesday 5th July 2022 6:37 - Sarah Winterburn

Arsenal pair Aaron Ramsdale and Ben White

Why 2020? Because this is the Covid era when transfer spending was supposed to be curbed. And five transfer windows is enough time to give us a pattern.

Headline: Eight out of 10 of the biggest spenders are in the Premier League. Wow.

All the numbers are from transfermarkt.


10) Bayern Munich (net spend since 2020: £130.59m)
Biggest signing: Leroy Sane (£54m)
Biggest sale: Thiago (£19.8m)

Ryan Gravenberch and Sadio Mane have arrived this summer as Bayern look to improve on a frankly embarrassing season in which they only won the league from eight points and lost to Villarreal in the Champions League quarter-finals. Robert Lewandowski would quite like to leave now, thank you.


9) Liverpool (net spend since 2020: £137.42m)
Biggest signing: Darwin Nunez (£67.5m)
Biggest sale: Sadio Mane (£28.8m)

Some considerable money has been spent on Nunez but Liverpool have started to recoup at least some of that outlay on sales, with Takumi Minamino the first out of the door for real money as he joined Monaco for £13.5m. Don’t think they are on for the Net Spend Cup, mind.


8) Manchester City (net spend since 2020: £161.46m)
Biggest signing: Jack Grealish (£105m)
Biggest sale: Leroy Sane (£54m)

Nobody spends more than Manchester City but nobody takes more than Manchester City, who on Monday sold Gabriel Jesus, bought Kalvin Phillips and made a small profit. They have definitely got more bang for their buck than the team above.


7) Chelsea (net spend since 2020: £162.09m)
Biggest signing: Romelu Lukaku (£101.7m)
Biggest sale: Tammy Abraham (£36m)

As we have documented elsewhere, Chelsea really have bought a right load of sh*t in recent years. This is only part-mitigated by their ability to sell players, sometimes for rather less money than they really should. Still, at least they got a £7m loan fee for Lukaku.


6) Leeds United (net spend since 2020: £162.53m)
Biggest signing:  Brenden Aaronson (£29.56m)
Biggest sale: Kalvin Phillips (£43.87m)

They finally sold a player. Which is reason in itself to applaud Leeds, whose fans must now get behind Jesse Marsch.


5) Manchester United (net spend since 2020: £169.74m)
Biggest signing: Jadon Sancho (£76.5m)
Biggest sale: Daniel James (£26m)

Maybe we should give Manchester United some rare praise for exhorting that fee from Leeds for Daniel James. You would have to say that they have generally got very little bang for their buck, mind. They might get a fiver for Ronaldo.


4) Paris Saint-Germain (net spend since 2020: £187.47m)
Biggest signing: Achraf Hakimi (£59.85m)
Biggest sale: Alphonse Areola (£8.37m)

Nobody leaves PSG for money. And everybody joins or stays at PSG for ludicrous wages, which is not quite reflected in their actual transfer spending.


3) Newcastle United (net spend since 2020: £212.6m)
Biggest signing: Bruno Guimaraes (£37.89m)
Biggest sale: Freddie Woodman (undisclosed)

They have basically taken f*** all from outgoing transfers (who needs to actually sell players for money when you are the richest club in the world?) while spending north of £130m since January 2022. Eddie Howe will be under pressure regardless of what the fans insist.


2) Tottenham Hotspur (net spend since 2020: £215.26m)
Biggest signing: Richarlison (£52.2m)
Biggest sale: Juan Foyth (£13.5m)

Daniel Levy might want to start getting a few quid in for unwanted members of a bloated squad because all these signings are very sensible but they are also damned expensive.


1) Arsenal (net spend since 2020: £257.16m)
Biggest signing: Ben White (£52.65m)
Biggest sale: Joe Willock (£26.46m)

That’s what moving from eighth to fifth costs. Trust the process. But getting absolutely nothing for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette has to be recorded as sub-optimal. It’s time to deliver now.

More Related Articles