News ID: 176847
Published: 0757 GMT February 01, 2017

Premier League 'hits season-record £1.4b transfer spend'

Premier League 'hits season-record £1.4b transfer spend'

Graphic charting the top ten Premier League transfers in the January transfer window
AFP

Premier League clubs shelled out a record £1.4 billion in transfers this season, according to a report Wednesday that warned of overreliance on big Chinese spending.

The Deloitte consultancy study said top-tier English sides made £40 million ($50 million/€46 million €) in profit from the January transfer window, the first time they have come out of the football horse-trading in the black, AFP reported.

The market closed on Tuesday night with Southampton swooping for Napoli's Italy forward Manolo Gabbiadini for at least £14 million while Burnley completing the reported club-record £13 million signing of Norwich winger Robbie Brady.

Deloitte said total gross spending by Premier League clubs for the 2016/17 season is now almost £1.4 billion ($1.76 billion/€1.6 billion) smashing the previous record of £1 billion set last season.

The latest eye-watering outlay was "far in excess of any other league in world football", said Dan Jones of Deloitte's sports business department.

In all, the 20 Premier League clubs spent £215 million on new players during the market from January 1 until Tuesday, Deloitte said, the second-highest amount for this window since 2011.

The bottom six teams fighting for their Premier League lives — Hull City, Sunderland, Crystal Palace, Swansea, reigning champion Leicester City and Middlesbrough — accounted for more than 50 percent of the January sales spending.

But the Premier League still came out in the black as a whole.

This month has seen the increasingly wealthy Chinese Super League flex its financial muscles with Brazil international Oscar leaving Chelsea for Shanghai SIPG in a move worth £51 million.

With Tuesday's deadline day made more complicated by the fact several Premier League clubs had important fixtures, one of the few big deals in the closing hours of the window saw more Chinese spending as Watford striker Ighalo joined Changchun Yatai for a fee reported to be around £20 million.

But Deloitte warned the days of Chinese teams splashing out on players could be coming to an end.

"The spending activity by clubs in the Chinese Super League (CSL) has grabbed many headlines in recent weeks," said Jones.

"CSL clubs have spent over £150 million so far during their current offseason, which began in November 2016.

"However, with the CFA having recently announced that tighter regulations around player transfer and salary expenditure are to be introduced, as well as imposing limits on the number of foreign players allowed, it will be interesting to see whether CSL clubs match this level of expenditure in future off-seasons."

   
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Resource: AFP
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