Rating the Premier League's 10 most expensive signings ever


The January transfer window is often a time where measured transfer policies are thrown out of the window and replaced by the tactic of chucking cash at the problem caused by sheer panic.

With potential big-money moves on the table for players such as Bruno Fernandes and Timo Werner, we have taken a look at the most expensive signings in Premier League history to see whether paying the big bucks is the solution.

Spoiler alert: it’s not.

Paul Pogba - Juventus to Manchester United (£89.3m)

There is no denying the Frenchman’s quality, but Pogba simply hasn’t shown that world-class talent on a consistent basis for the Red Devils.

Kepa Arrizabalaga has the worst save percentage of any goalkeeper in the Premier League

Premier League’s greatest ever strikers ranked from ‘God Tier’ to ‘Just Decent’

How Manchester United could line up against Liverpool without Marcus Rashford

Having rejoined the club from Juventus in a then world-record fee in 2016, a mixture of injuries, a frosty relationship with previous manager Jose Mourinho and him seemingly having his head turned by a potential move away, Pogba has frustrated United fans more than he has elated them.

GMS Verdict: Miss

2. Harry Maguire - Leicester City to Manchester United (£80m)

Maguire was brought in this summer along with Aaron Wan-Bissaka to shore things up at the back for United and the statistics show he has, with the Red Devils conceding 25 goals in 22 games so far this campaign.

That is only bettered by Liverpool, Manchester City and Sheffield United. While the England centre-back hasn’t set the world alight at Old Trafford he has just been made club captain after Ashley Young’s departure to Serie A.

GMS Verdict: Hit (with room for improvement)

=3. Virgil van Dijk - Southampton to Liverpool (£75m)

Van Dijk is without doubt the best example of a January signing going to plan. Bought by Jurgen Klopp in 2018 to patch up a leaky defence, the Dutch international lead the Reds to their sixth Champions League, along with the Super Cup and the club’s first ever Club World Cup success.

He has simply been immense since he walked in the door and looks set to add a Premier League medal to his ever-growing collection of awards. The biggest compliment to him is that he makes others looks better.

GMS Verdict: Hit

=3. Romelu Lukaku - Everton to Manchester United (£75m)

When Lukaku penned his deal at United he would have expected to be at Old Trafford for more than the two years he was. In that time he managed 98 appearances and netted 40 goals in the Premier League, not a shabby goal ratio by any means.

However, often criticised for a lack of mobility and technique, the big Belgian pushed for a move to Serie A with Inter Milan. Lukaku has since netted 14 times in the league and with United the lowest scoring of the top five clubs, you have to wonder whether it was a mistake to let him go.

GMS Verdict: Miss


5. Nicolas Pepe - Lille to Arsenal (£72m)

Arsenal fans were excited when the club announced that they had decided to break the bank to secure Pepe from Ligue 1. Only Kylian Mbappe managed more combined goals and assists in the French league last year and Pepe showed glimpses of his brilliance during a 3-1 loss to Liverpool at Anfield at the start of the season.

However, a modest return of three goals and three assists in his 20 Premier League games so far is not quite what Gunners fans had expected. At just 24 he still has plenty of time to be a hit at the Emirates, even Thierry Henry started slowly to life in England. If Pepe turns out to be half the player Henry was Arsenal fans won’t be complaining.

GMS Verdict: Miss (so far)

6. Kepa Arrizabalaga - Athletic Bilbao to Chelsea (£71m)

There was certainly pressure on Kepa’s shoulders when he made the move to Stamford Bridge. He broke the record transfer fee spent on a goalkeeper, previously held by another member of this list, and was the replacement for the highly-rated Thibaut Courtois.

The Spaniard began life well in London and even dislodged David de Gea as the national team’s number one. However, he currently holds the worst save percentage of any Premier League goalkeeper at 55.4% and is struggling to regain form under Frank Lampard.

GMS Verdict: Hit (for now)

6. Alisson Becker - Roma to Liverpool (£67m)

Alisson held the record for the most expensive goalkeeper in football before Chelsea splashed out on Kepa. While van Dijk’s impact on the Liverpool backline has been immense, you could argue that Alisson’s impact is as big if not bigger.

A problem position for the Reds ever since Pepe Reina declined, Alisson allows his back four to be confident that if they do allow a shot on goal, he’ll almost certainly be behind it. The Brazilian has a remarkable ability to rarely parry a ball and keeps Manchester City’s Ederson out of the national team lineup, which speaks for itself.

GMS Verdict: Hit

Brazil v Peru: Final - Copa America Brazil 2019

7. Rodri - Atletico Madrid to Manchester City (£62.8m)

Manchester City broke their transfer record to bring in the Spanish international and he has performed well since his arrival. The 23-year-old has shades of a young Sergio Busquets at the base of City’s midfield, keeping things ticking over and breaking up play if the opponent manages to launch a counter-attack.

His transfer has proved to be extra valuable to Guardiola after Aymeric Laporte’s injury forced Fernandinho to fill in at centre-back.

GMS Verdict: Hit

8. Riyad Mahrez - Leicester City to Manchester City (£60m)

The Algerian probably expected to get his move to City a couple of years earlier, immediately after Leicester stormed to an amazing Premier League title in 2016. Once getting the move in 2018 though, he was restricted to less starts than he would have liked due to the the sheer quality of the players around him, but this campaign the mazy winger has been immense.

He has seven goals and seven assists in 19 appearances in the league and has been terrorising whoever he comes up against. He also has added two more Premier League medals to his collection since being at City. It will be interesting to see what happens when Leroy Sane is back, but Mahrez is most certainly a hit.

GMS Verdict: Hit

Cardiff City v Manchester City - Premier League

9. Joao Cancelo - Juventus to Manchester City (£60m)

Eyebrows were raised when City paid out the eye-watering figure of £60m to secure the services of Cancelo, even if Danilo did go the other way for £34m. The Portuguese fullback has not seen much game time in the Premier League so far this season, limited to just nine appearances due to the form of Kyle Walker.

Cancelo’s main strengths are going forward due to his pace and clever overlapping runs, but City fans have not seen too much of it so far. Due to the fee and game time combination it is hard to put Cancelo down as anything other than a miss, but with the caveat that when he starts playing he could easily become a hit.

GMS Verdict: Miss

10. Angel Di Maria - Real Madrid to Manchester United (£59.7m)

Di Maria arrived in Manchester in 2014 with a big reputation and a big transfer fee to match, and it started off promisingly after he pulled off a delightful lob against Leicester early in the season.

However, the moments of brilliance proved to be sporadic and a disgraceful red card against Arsenal in the FA Cup for a dive and then subsequent grab of referee Michael Oliver’s shirt was the beginning of the end for the Argentine. He left the following summer after registering three goals and 10 assists in 27 outings.

GMS Verdict: Miss

So there we have it, the most expensive signings in Premier League history. There have certainly been a fair share of hits and misses over the past few years and it shows that making that big money signing isn’t always the solution.

News Now - Sport News