Man Utd top ranking of decade of club transfer spending, Benfica lead way as player traders

money flying

September 7 – Portugal’s Benfica top a ranking of 100 clubs transfer balances over the past decade with a net positive return of +€764million in trading since 2013.

Manchester United hold the position of having the decade’s biggest transfer spend deficit of +€1.396 billion, while Chelsea have.

The ranking by the CIES Football Observatory shows Benfica ahead AFC Ajax (+€434 million) and RB Salzburg (+€422 million).

Even after losing the lion’s share of elite players during the past decade, Benfica remarkably still compete at the highest level, bowing out to eventual finalists Inter Milan in the round of 16 of last season’s UEFA Champions League.

The Portuguese giants’ sales of players to the top five leagues are headlined by Enzo Fernandez’s €121 million transfer to Chelsea last winter and Joao Felix’s €127 million switch to Atletico Madrid in 2019.

In contrast Man Utd continually broken their transfer record signings with Paul Pogba, Harry Maguire and Antony, but still haven’t found the consistency to win the Premier League since the CIES study began.

Chelsea and Paris St-Germain are the only other teams that have transfer spends exceeding €1 billion. Chelsea, in particular, hold the unenviable distinction of having the highest transfer deficit, with a staggering deficit of €993 million built since 2020.

Chelsea unsurprisingly sit top of the net spend chart for the calendar year 2023, where their tranfer spend stands at €558 million. Since Christmas the club have welcomed some of the most expensive players in the history of the sport, including Fernandez and British record €116 million signing Moises Caicedo.

The report published by CIES also reveals that the amount of transfer fees incurred by clubs in 2023 (around €12.4 billion) was almost 25% higher than in the previous record year of 2019 due to the sharp increase of Premier League and Saudi Pro League clubs’ investments, headed by Chelsea and the PIF-funded Saudi Pro League clubs.

To see the full report, click here.

Contact the writer of this story at moc.l1719035663labto1719035663ofdlr1719035663owedi1719035663sni@g1719035663niwe.1719035663yrrah1719035663