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Is £80m the new ‘standard’ fee for top players in football?

| 05.07.2014

Over the last five years, we have seen a boost in transfer fees, as the customary inflation plays a part in football. Real Madrid’s ‘Galacticos’ era set the trend, when prices were typically around the £40m mark. Zinedine Zidane, Luis Figo, and Ronaldo all moved to the Spanish giants for what had been deemed significant, and eye-watering amounts at the time.

In recent years, after the re-appointment of Florentino Perez as club president, Los Blancos set a new precedent for transfer fees, and in light of Luis Suarez’s expected move to Barcelona, Coral analyses the past, present and possibly future players that may push the current record beyond the £100m mark.


Cristiano Ronaldo
The Portuguese forward moved to Real for a then-record £80m in 2009, after Perez identified him as the club’s number one transfer target. Despite spending a sum in the region of £250m that summer, including acquiring Kaka for £58m, Ronaldo was the main signing at the Bernabeu and has since flourished, winning the Ballon D’or in 2013.

Gareth Bale
No-one expected Ronaldo’s record to be broken within five years, though Perez once again zeroed in on a player that he wanted and, after protracted negotiations with Tottenham Hotspur, signed Gareth Bale for £85.3m. It highlighted once again that Perez gets his man.


Luis Suarez
Barcelona are understood to be in advanced negotiations to sign the Uruguayan forward for £80m from Liverpool. It is becoming increasingly likely that the move will happen, however, it is just a question of when. The striker was attraction the attention of Real, though following his breach of discipline at the World Cup, their interest has since cooled.

Paul Pogba
Since the Frenchman left Manchester United to join Juventus, he has gone from strength to strength. Perhaps his country’s modern day equivalent of Arsenal legend Patrick Vieira, Pogba is seeing his stock rising all the time. It is reported Chelsea have been quoted £60m, however should he stay in Serie A for at least the forseeable, that figure can easily increase.


Raheem Sterling
Another player on the books at Liverpool, though this one is homegrown. Having risen through the youth academy, Sterling has already lit up the Premier League under the tutelage of manager Brendan Rodgers. There have been whispers that Real are interested, though these have been quickly quashed. The Reds are said to be keen to tie him down to a long-term contract, and if he continues to live up to his potential, there is every chance the attacker may set a new transfer record in the future.

Adnan Januzaj
Big things are expected from this lad. He burst onto the scene last season, and was possibly one of the only good things to emerge from the David Moyes regime. Januzaj has the potential to be a good as Cristiano Ronaldo in the future, if he is utilised effectively by new Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal. Taking inflation into account, any likely move away from Old Trafford over the next five years could be worth nine figures.

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Matt Haynes

A long-suffering Leeds fan, Matt studied Sports Journalism at university, and has a plethora of multi-industry experience. Having worked on behalf of multiple hedge funds and top-tier investment banks in executive search, he has also had a stint with the BBC and the Press Association. Outside of work, he pursues entrepreneurial activities and likes to keep fit.
Although he has interviewed current England manager Roy Hodgson as well as Rafa Benitez and a number of other names, he is honoured to have spent time in the company of Gordon Banks. Matt enjoys cultivating long-lasting professional and personal relationships, is solution orientated, and supports Coral’s sports content provision.