Why are Transfers So Expensive?

With this transfer window wide open, many of the big clubs are spending big in an attempt to strengthen their teams ahead of the new season. Big money moves have been made already for the likes of Romelu Lukaku (75million), Alexandre Lacazette (52.7million), Leonardo Bonucci (50million), Bernardo Silva (43million), Ederson (37.5million), Victor Lindelof (32million), Michael Keane (30million) and Jordan Pickford (30million) this summer. There have also been reported deals for Alvaro Morata (70million), Kyle Walker (54million), Virgil Van Dijk (60million), Naby Keita (57million), Tiemoue Bakayoko (47million) and Kylian Mbappe (100million).

With transfer prices going through the roof in recent seasons, the question on many fans lips is why are prices so high. If prices continue to rise as they are, 100million will be a normal price for a player in a couple of years. The answer is simple. Because these clubs are owned by big multinational corporations, rich sheikhs and oligarchs who all see 100million as we see a tenner, dispensable. Also the new television deals with Sky and BT are producing even more money for these clubs on a daily basis.

The willingness of clubs to hold on to their best players is a huge part of why transfers are going up. Players join a club at a young age and make their way through the ranks into the senior team in any given country and if they are talented, they are bound to be wanted by other clubs. If a player is good enough and the manager and the club want them to stay, they will raise the price of a player up to try and make it near impossible for the club to afford the player and to allow them to be able to afford a talented replacement.The competition for players is also a huge factor in driving their price up.  If two or more clubs are looking for the same player, that also affects their price as the club will try to get the best possible price for their player in order to be able to sign the best possible replacements.

However, the people with the money that buy clubs tend to try to buy bigger, more established clubs as a better return on their investment, pricing other clubs who aren’t owned by millionaires out. It also doesn’t give home grown players much of a chance at the big clubs with these players forced to look elsewhere for a chance. Many fans will ask what the solution is to this problem. The answer to that is that it would probably require a rule change from soccer’s governing body FIFA. They would have to adopt a style similar to the one used in Cricket where only two foreign players are allowed in any team or in Rugby Union where players that leave their country of origin, they forfeit their right to play for their country in international games. A system similar to the Cricket one is already used in China where only three foreign players are allowed to play in any one team. This is a debate which will inevitably continue as prices continue to rise through the roof.

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