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FIFA reveal a record £5.9BILLION was spent on transfers this summer in a new report – 42% more than last year – but England still tops the list after splashing out £1.6bn on new stars

A record £5.9billion was spent on transfer fees worldwide between June and September this summer, a new report from FIFA has revealed.

The governing body published its International Transfer Snapshot report on Friday after analysing yet another busy summer of transfer activity.

Several high-profile players followed Cristiano Ronaldo‘s example by signing lucrative deals with teams in Saudi Arabian, as stars such as Karim Benzema, N’Golo Kante, Jordan Henderson, Riyad Mahrez and Neymar left Europe to move to the Middle East.

Meanwhile, both Chelsea and Arsenal broke the £100million mark to sign defensive midfielders Moises Caicedo and Declan Rice respectively, while Tottenham legend Harry Kane became the most expensive Bundesliga transfer in history by signing for German giants Bayern Munich.

As a result, FIFA found that almost £6bn was spent on transfer fees in the mid-year window between June 1 and September 1, which smashes the previous worldwide record set in 2019.

FIFA has revealed that a record £5.9billion was spent on transfers this summer in a new report

Declan Rice left West Ham to join the Gunners for £105m

Moises Caicedo arrived at Stamford Bridge from Brighton for £115m

Premier League clubs spent big on new signings this summer, as defensive midfielders Declan Rice (left) and Moises Caicedo (right) joined Arsenal and Chelsea respectively for over £100m

This summer’s spending was 26.8 per cent higher than 2019, when Joao Felix to Atletico Madrid (£114m), Antoine Griezmann to Barcelona (£108m), Eden Hazard to Real Madrid (£89m) and Harry Maguire to Manchester United (£80m) were the most expensive transfers of the window.

The report also shows a 47.2 per cent increase compared to the 2022 summer window, and it was the first time in history over 10,000 mid-year transfers were made worldwide.

FIFA’s Chief Legal and Compliance Officer Emilio Garcia Silvero revealed on Friday: ‘England topped the list in the 2023 mid-year period when it came to spending on transfer fees (£1.6bn), the number of incoming transfers (449) and the number of outgoing transfers (514). 

‘Germany, however, were the number one in terms of receipts from transfer fees (£890m).’

Saudi Arabia were second in the list behind England with £701m spent on transfer fees this summer, ahead of France (£689m), Germany (£611m), Italy (£570m) and Spain (£325m).

The Asian Football Confederation, which governs Saudi Arabia and the other Middle Eastern nations, accounted for 14.0 per cent of this summer’s global transfer expenditure.

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Jordan Henderson penned a £700,000-a-week contract with Saudi giants Al-Ettifaq

Real Madrid legend Karim Benzema left Real Madrid to sign with Saudi Pro League champions Al-Ittihad

Meanwhile, high-profile stars such as Jordan Henderson (left) and Karim Benzema (right) left Europe to sign lucrative deals in Saudi Arabia, who spent £701m on transfer fees this summer

Spending in the women's game has also increased significantly this summer. Pictured: Jill Roord on international duty with the Netherlands after joining Manchester City for £321,000

Spending in the women’s game has also increased significantly this summer. Pictured: Jill Roord on international duty with the Netherlands after joining Manchester City for £321,000

Spending in the women’s game has also risen significantly to £2.4m this summer, doubling the 2022 mid-year total on transfer fees.

The number of transfers made between June and September has also increased for a sixth successive year. In total, a record 829 transfers were made in the women’s game this summer and 66 of those had a fee attached to the deal.

Europe remained the major players in the women’s game with 634 incoming and 565 outgoing transfers. 

Meanwhile, agent fees also soared to a new high this summer, with £558m paid to player agents between June and September. 

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