Football: Man City squad most expensive in history: Report

Manchester City's Spanish coach Pep Guardiola at a press conference on Feb 12, 2018, in Basel, on the eve of their UEFA Champions League match against Basel. PHOTO: AFP

PARIS (AFP) - Premier League leaders Manchester City have the most expensive squad in history, according to a report published on Monday by the Swiss-based CIES Football Observatory.

The research values Pep Guardiola's squad at 878 million euros (S$1.4 billion), with Paris Saint-Germain second on 805 million euros, after a January transfer window in which City acquired centre-back Aymeric Laporte from Athletic Bilbao for 65 million euros.

Neymar's world-record signing from Barcelona accounts for more than a quarter of the PSG total but Kylian Mbappe is only on loan, despite an anticipated transfer fee of up to 180m euros to be paid to Monaco at the end of the season.

That leaves Guardiola managing the costliest-ever collection of talent.

"When you want to compete at the highest level, you need to spend," Guardiola said last month.

"Some clubs spend £300, £400 million on two players. We spend it on six players."

Two other teams have spent more than 700m euros building their squads - Manchester United (747 million euros) and Barcelona (725 million euros).

The rest of the top ten is made up of Real Madrid in sixth, Juventus in eighth and four Premier League teams - Chelsea, Liverpool, Arsenal and Everton.

The researchers calculated that the average Premier League squad cost "a record high" of 291 million euros, more than double La Liga's average of 131 million euros.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.