Europe’s elite lead way in $5 bil­lion spree

China Daily - - SPORTS -

The sum­mer trans­fer win­dow saw $4.71 bil­lion spent world­wide, over three quar­ters of which were from the top five Euro­pean leagues, FIFA an­nounced on Thurs­day.

Paris Saint-Ger­main’s worl­drecord sign­ing of Ney­mar from Barcelona for $264 mil­lion dom­i­nated the head­lines, but many of Europe’s other big clubs also broke their own trans­fer records.

“Be­tween June 1 and Sept 1, 7,590 in­ter­na­tional trans­fers were com­pleted world­wide,” FIFA said in a state­ment.

“Global spend­ing reached $4.71 bil­lion, mean­ing clubs spent al­most as much dur­ing those three months as they had in the whole of 2016 ($4.79 bil­lion).”

PSG also signed teenager Kylian Mbappe from Monaco on a sea­son-long loan, with an op­tion to make him the sec­ond-most ex­pen­sive player of all-time for $214 mil­lion.

Largely down to PSG, France saw the big­gest in­crease in in­ter­na­tional trans­fer spend­ing, with its clubs spend­ing $604.1 mil­lion, an in­crease of 250 per­cent on last sum­mer.

Five-time Euro­pean cham­pi­ons Bay­ern Mu­nich and Barcelona also set new club records for Corentin Tolisso and Ous­mane Dem­bele re­spec­tively.

FIFA’s re­port found that clubs in Europe’s top five leagues spent $3.67 bil­lion, a new trans­fer-win­dow record.

“Once again, clubs from the Big 5 (Eng­land, Spain, France, Ger­many and Italy) took cen­ter tage, com­plet­ing 21.2 per­cent of the to­tal in­com­ing trans­fers and spend­ing 77.9 per­cent of the to­tal global spend,” FIFA added.

English clubs spent the most on play­ers — a to­tal of $1.4 bil­lion, more than dou­ble that of any other coun­try.

The chaotic na­ture of the trans­fer win­dow has prompted calls for re­forms, with English Pre­mier League clubs vot­ing to end their win­dow be­fore the start of the 2017-18 sea­son.

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