Big money non-starters. Spurs, Liverpool and Man City keep new players benched

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September 25 – With the new season gathering pace, the CIES Football Observatory has analysed how the big money transfers are settling in with their new teams, with initial indications suggesting not very well at some of Europe’s leading clubs.

The CIES looked at the percentage of domestic league minutes played by new signings at Big 5 league clubs since the start of the season. “Last Champions League finalists, Tottenham (5.0%) and Liverpool (8.3%), as well as Manchester City (7.7%), are among the 14 teams where new recruits played less than one tenth of minutes,” says the report.

“The figures for Manchester United and Chelsea are much higher: 25.8% and 33.6% respectively. Among Champions League participants, only LOSC Lille fielded new signings for a greater percentage of minutes than Chelsea: 42.5%. The highest proportion in the big-5 was measured for Fiorentina (69.5%), a club recently taken over by a new wealthy owner.”

New recruits to Premier League clubs have so far played 15.7% of minutes (maximum 50.4% at newly promoted Aston Villa). “At the opposite end of the table is the Italian Serie A: 29.6% (minimum 5.5% for Atalanta). The averages measured in the other three leagues of the big-5 are 22.7% for Bundesliga, 24.0% for the Liga (maximum 54.3% for Sevilla) and 26.7% for Ligue 1,” said the report authors.

Minutes played by new recruits by club (top 40 ranked by lowest minutes)

Source: CIES Football Observatory

See the full data at

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