What are the 10 most expensive transfers in football history?

·4 min read
What are the 10 most expensive transfers in football history?

The 2022 summer transfer window has been full of shocks, record deals and big-money signings.

Erling Haaland joined Manchester City, Darwin Nunez arrived at Liverpool and Robert Lewandowski swapped Bayern Munich for Barcelona.

Money is always a central talking point of a transfer window with it more in focus than ever before due to the eye-watering deals that have been brokered in recent years.

Here’s all you need to know about the highest price tags on the planet.

10: Gareth Bale - Tottenham to Real Madrid - €100.8m (£86.6m)

Gareth Bale made the top ten with his transfer to Real Madrid (Nick Potts/PA) (PA Archive)
Gareth Bale made the top ten with his transfer to Real Madrid (Nick Potts/PA) (PA Archive)

Bale moved to Real Madrid from Tottenham Hotspur in 2013 for €100.8m and it seems to be money well spent.

At Real Bale has won four Champions League titles, two Spanish Super Cups, a Spanish Cup, two La Liga trophies and four Club World Cup titles.

The forward did fall out of favour under Zinedine Zidane and so he went out on loan back to Spurs for the 20/21 season before leaving the club permanently in the summer of 2022.

9 and 8: Paul Pogba and Ousmane Dembele - Juventus to Manchester United / Dortmund to Barcelona - €105m (£90.1m)

Pogba, left and Dembele were bought for the same amount of money (Getty Images)
Pogba, left and Dembele were bought for the same amount of money (Getty Images)

The French teammates managed to bag deals worth the same amount to clock a joint spot in the top ten.

Paul Pogba joined Manchester United from Juventus in 2016 and at the time he broke the Premier League transfer record.

His spell didn’t go to plan, however, and after an underwhelming six years he has returned to Italy.

Meanwhile, Ousmane Dembele signed for Barcelona from Borussia Dortmund in 2017.

The winger has won two La Ligas, two Spanish Cups and a Spanish Super Cups with the club.

7: Romelu Lukaku - Inter Milan to Chelsea - €115m (£98.7m)

Romelu Lukaku’s return to Chelsea was a club transfer record (Nick Potts/PA) (PA Wire)
Romelu Lukaku’s return to Chelsea was a club transfer record (Nick Potts/PA) (PA Wire)

Belgium international Romelu Lukaku broke Chelsea’s club transfer record when they signed him last summer from Inter Milan.

Much was expected when Lukaku returned to Stamford Bridge but the less said about the spell the better as he returned back to Inter on loan after just one year.

6: Jack Grealish - Aston Villa to Manchester City - €117m (£100m)

Jack Grealish broke the Premier League transfer record (Nick Potts/PA) (PA Wire)
Jack Grealish broke the Premier League transfer record (Nick Potts/PA) (PA Wire)

Jack Grealish’s boyhood club Aston Villa wanted to keep the star so much they wrote a £100m release clause into his contract when he re-signed in 2020.

“City are the best team in the country with a manager considered to be the best in the world - it’s a dream come true to be part of this club,” Grealish said upon signing for City.

“Over the past 10 seasons, they have won major trophies consistently. Pep (Guardiola) coming here has taken them to the next level and the football this team plays is the most exciting in Europe.”

5 and 4: Antoine Griezmann and Philippe Coutinho - Atletico Madrid to Barcelona / Liverpool to Barcelona - €120m (£102.9m)

Antoine Griezmann and Philippe Coutinho have the same fee next to their names (Getty Images)
Antoine Griezmann and Philippe Coutinho have the same fee next to their names (Getty Images)

Antoine Griezmann and Philippe Coutinho bagged their spots in the top ten for the same club - Barcelona.

Coutinho joined the Spanish giants in 2018 from Liverpool and the midfielder won two La Ligas, two Spanish Cups and one Spanish Super Cup.

While Griezmann signed for Barca in 2019 from Atletico Madrid but enjoyed a bumpy ride before returning to his former club.

3: Joao Felix - Benfica to Atletico Madrid - €126m (£108.1m)

Joao Felix has shone at Atletico Madrid (AP)
Joao Felix has shone at Atletico Madrid (AP)

Forward Joao Felix signed for Atletico Madrid for an eye-watering amount in 2019 from Benfica.

He has won a La Liga title at the club but he will have plenty of opportunity to bag more trophies as he signed a seven-year deal with Diego Simeone’s side.

2: Kylian Mbappe - Monaco to PSG - €145m (+€35m) (£124.4m +£30m)

Mbappe had a mixed season last term (AFP via Getty Images)
Mbappe had a mixed season last term (AFP via Getty Images)

French forward Kylian Mbappe signed for Paris Saint-Germain from Monaco in 2017 and he has impressed as one of the brightest young players in the world.

He has won three Ligue 1 titles, three French Cups, three French Super Cups two French League Cups, was the 18/19 Player of the Season and is regarded as one of the best players in the world.

He was expected to leave for nothing to Real Madrid before signing a bumper new contract to remain in the French capital.

1: Neymar - Barcelona to PSG - €222m (190.5m)

Neymar is the most expensive player of all time (AFP via Getty Images)
Neymar is the most expensive player of all time (AFP via Getty Images)

Neymar tops our list and he is head and shoulders above the rest with a whopping €222m figure.

He signed for Paris Saint-Germain in 2017 from Barcelona and he has since won three Ligue 1 titles, three French Cups, three French Super Cups and two French League Cups.

He now also gets to play with former Barca teammate Lionel Messi who signed for the club last summer.