Bellingham at €280m is world’s most valuable player, with Foden and Saka capping English trio in top six

May 30 – Real Madrid and England star Jude Bellingham is the world’s most valuable player, according to a CIES Football Observatory ranking that looks at the transfer values of the top 100 players in the world.

Having bought by Real Madrid for €103 million at the start of the season, a standout season has seen the 20-year-old’s value rocket to €280 million.

The Madridista is joined by teammates Vinicius Junior (€240 million) and Rodrygo Goes (€220 millin) in the top four as Wembley awaits Los Blancos, who are eyeing a 15th UEFA Champions League title on Saturday.

Second-placed Erling Haaland is the first of two Norwegians to feature inside the top ten, as the €255 million-valued striker is joined by Arsenal’s Martin Odegaard (€135 million). Despite having two of the most valuable players in world football, Norway will be absent for this summer’s European Championships after failing to break out of the qualifying rounds.

Three English players can be found inside the top six highest value players in the world, as Bellingham is joined by Premier League Player of the Season Phil Foden (€203 million) and Arsenal prodigy Bukayo Saka (€195 million).

All three are expected to feature prominently as England looks to claim a first-ever European title this summer. In fact, England has the most entries into the CIES ranking with 12 players, featuring some unexpected names such as Manchester City’s Rico Lewis (€84 million), who wasn’t selected in Gareth Southgate’s provisional tournament squad, and Aston Villa’s Ollie Watkins (€73 million) who is destined to play deputy to Captain Harry Kane.

Manchester City’s trio of Haaland, Foden and Julian Alvarez (€168 million) make them the second team to hold three players valued higher than €150 million.

Bayer Leverkusen had to feature somewhere inside the top ten after an unprecedented invincible Bundesliga campaign, in which young star Florian Wirtz flourished. The young German’s value has rocketed to €133 million despite having three years left on his current deal.

Dominik Szoboszlai (€108 million) is the most valuable Liverpool player to start Arne Slot’s era in charge, despite the Hungarian’s hit-and-miss first season in red. He is closely followed by similarly inconsistent Darwin Nunez at €107 million, who has been tipped for a move away after a late-season tantrum left the Uruguayan’s Liverpool future uncertain.

Future Real Madrid player Kylian Mbappe is a clear absentee from the list, as his transfer value is virtually €0 at present due to having finished his contract at PSG. Upon signing a highly-lucrative deal in the Spanish capital, we can expect the Frenchman to soar to the top of the ranking.

Across other positions, Borussia Dortmund’s and Switzerland’s goalkeeper Gregor Kobel tops the table for goalkeepers, Arsenal’s Frenchman William Saliba for centre backs, Manchester City’s Croatian Joško Gvardiol for full backs and Real Madrid’s Uruguayan Federico Valverde for defensive midfielders. Endrick Felipe from Palmeiras (on loan from Real Madrid) has the top estimated transfer value among non-European based players (€92 million).

Interestingly, all five of the Chelsea players that feature in the ranking also form the top five longest contracts, which is topped by Enzo Fernandez whose Chelsea deal expires in 2032.

Barcelona’s Yamine Lamal is the youngest player to feature at just 16-years-old, already accumulating an estimated market value of €140 million in his first ever professional season.

Built on around 5,500 paid transfers, the CIES statistical model explains more than 85% of the differences in the fees invested by clubs on the basis of criteria such as age, length of contract, minutes, the proportion of the latter as a starter, the sporting level of matches played, results, the economic strength of the player’s club and league, that of potential buyers and the level of inflation.

To see the full data, click here.

Contact the writer of this story, Harry Ewing, at moc.l1721854643labto1721854643ofdlr1721854643owedi1721854643sni@g1721854643niwe.1721854643yrrah1721854643