LONDON – English Premier League clubs have broken the record for transfer spending during the January window with a £440 million (S$713 million) spree, according to sports finance experts Deloitte.
Based on the latest figures released on Tuesday, the gross spend by Premier League sides had surpassed the competition’s previous high of £430 million, which was set in January 2018.
Funded by their new American owners, Chelsea have fuelled the English top flight’s record-breaking January.
The Blues have spent around £180 million in this window alone, with Ukraine winger Mykhailo Mudryk joining from Shakhtar Donetsk in a deal reportedly worth £88.5 million.
Chelsea also brought in David Fofana from Molde, Benoit Badiashile from Monaco, Andrey Santos from Vasco da Gama and Noni Madueke from PSV Eindhoven.
Badiashile and Madueke were signed for £33 million and £30.7 million respectively.
Meanwhile, Netherlands forward Cody Gakpo joined Liverpool from PSV for £44 million in another of the big January deals.
Premier League leaders Arsenal, who are seeking to win their first top-flight title since 2003-04, bolstered their squad with the signing of Belgian winger Leandro Trossard from Brighton & Hove Albion for £21 million.
There is still one week left before the January window closes.
This leaves room for the record to rise even higher.
In the January 2022 window, Deloitte said Premier League clubs’ gross spend was £105 million with one week to go and finished up at £295 million.
“January 2023 has already surpassed the record spent during any previous winter window as Premier League clubs look to reinforce their squads ahead of a crucial second half of the season,” said Calum Ross, assistant director in Deloitte’s Sports Business Group.
“The 2022-23 season has seen clubs invest heavily in their squads...
“New ownership and an availability of financial resources to pay significant sums to maximise performance continue to be key contributors towards record spending levels.
“While this level of spending illustrates Premier League clubs’ recovery post-pandemic, the importance of long-term financial planning and focus on financial sustainability should continue to be a priority.”
There is no clear evidence that the World Cup in Qatar has caused a strain on squads due to injuries and fatigue but that could also be a factor in the English top-flight clubs’ heavy spending on reinforcements.
Deloitte said that gross spending by Premier League clubs for the 2022-23 season so far is £2.4 billion, with the winter record following the record-breaking £1.9 billion spend last summer. AFP