It isn’t exactly a secret when it comes to how much ‘ambition’ was shown Newcastle United this summer.

Rather than properly investing in the squad, Mike Ashley decided to insist on a profit in excess of £20m being  made on transfers in and out.

However, how does the cost of building Newcastle’s overall squad compare to the rest of the Premier League and indeed those in the other major European leagues?

Football finance specialists the CIES Football Observatory, have published a report showing the most expensive 98 club squads from the five major European Leagues (England, Spain, Italy, France, Germany), based on the transfer cost each one has spent to build them.

Obviously the figures won’t be exact to the penny but they use the same criteria and sources in terms of building their data.

The power of the Premier League is transparently obvious, at least in terms of money.

The top 11 features seven English clubs, with only PSG, Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus included.

Manchester City are almost at the Billion mark in terms of Euros spent on their current squad, with 976m Euros (£868m) the estimated amount they have spent on the players they now have.

Quite incredibly, apart from Cardiff, all the other 19 Premier League clubs are in the top 42.

Newcastle United find themselves in 37th place overall and 16th highest of the PL clubs, on a figure of 135m euros (£120m), behind the likes of Brighton and Bournemouth.

The only PL clubs that have spent less to build their current squads are Wolves and Burnley (both 126m euros (£112m), as well as Huddersfield (110m euros – £98m) and Cardiff (59m euros – £52m).

The current Premier League table shows the bottom four also feature in the five cheapest squads, Wolves the exception as they are in 9th place in the PL table.

It is quite incredible to compare the situation in England compared to some of the clubs on the continent, with the likes of Fortuna Dusseldorf playing in the Bundesliga with a squad that cost only 10m euros (£8.9m), the same being  the case with Real Valladolid in La Liga, also with a squad that only cost 10m euros (£8.9m)

CIES Football Observatory table of clubs in big 5 European leagues based on transfer cost to build current squad:

newcastle unitednewcastle unitedCIES Football Observatory:

‘Manchester City has spent almost €1 billion in transfer indemnities to sign its present squad members (add-ons included). This is the highest figure ever measured for a football team. Issue number 233 of the CIES Football Observatory Weekly Post presents the data for all of the big-5 league teams.

Seven English Premier League teams are in the 11 top positions of the table. The biggest increase compared to last year was measured for Liverpool (from €437M to €704M). The Spanish giants (Barcelona and Real Madrid), Juventus and Paris St-Germain (2nd overall) are the only non-English teams in the top 11. The best-ranked German Bundesliga club, Bayern Munich, is 12th.

Total transfer expenditure to make up the squad for clubs from the five major European leagues went constantly up during the last decade. In 2010, a big-5 league had spent on average €67M to sign its squad members. In 2018, this figure reached a new record high of €161M. During the same period, the amounts invested to assemble the squad by English Premier League clubs went up from €126M to €326M.’



  • TheFatController

    Proof that Man City and Newcastle United really are propped up by their generous benefactors.

  • SuperDesHamilton

    Over a billion quid and all they’ve got to show for it is a few domestic trinkets. For a billion you’d demand at least 2/3 champions league titles.

    Just shows you all the money In the world can’t but class or prestige

  • Angelswithdirtyfaces

    so much for the fair play rules

    • SuperDesHamilton

      Isn’t it ironic platini put ffp in place to stop English teams spending a shed load of money…only for PSG to be bought by a country.

      It’s easy to get round it as well Man City & PSG just said Emirates etc were sponsoring the stadium and the money the loss they made was balanced out by that

  • Paul Patterson

    Means little, but one thing it says is that because of our manager and players efforts, we were within 1 goal of teams that have spent 976m, 673m 428m and 393m compared to our 135m. That said, we should be beating Cardiff who have spent half again.

    It’s not an even playing field . .

    • TheFatController

      It’s clear that if you aren’t owned by a country, you should have a plan.

      Ashley admitted he doesn’t understand how fast football moves, but not having a plan as a result is pathetic.

      He has no plan, so should sell. To own a club and not run it with a clear objective matched by policies is neglect and dereliction of duty.

      The FA really have it wrong on their ability to control governance.

      • Leazes.

        Ashley has more ready cash than a few countries.

    • Leazes.

      We were always above the likes of Napoli and Inter….. we seem to have gone down the plughole.

  • Emprex

    the only thing these figures show is how well Cardiff have done to get into the premier League, actually wanting them to stay up now as long as does not mean we go down as a result

    • Paul Patterson

      One or both will go ..

    • Leazes.

      They also show how far United have dropped down the rankings under an owner that positions his squad at 15th and tells the manager not to try for a European Place, to put the boot into us because that is what United fans want.