NEUCHATEL (Switzerland) • Suitors of Kylian Mbappe must be prepared to splash the cash for the prodigious Frenchman, with an algorithm estimating that the 21-year-old would cost a staggering €265.2 million (S$397.6 million).
Paris Saint-Germain's Neymar holds the transfer world record for his 2017 move from Barcelona for €222 million, considerably more than the €180 million the French champions paid Monaco after completing a permanent deal for Mbappe the following year.
According to an algorithm developed by the Switzerland-based CIES Football Observatory, Mbappe's value has skyrocketed while Neymar, 27, is now estimated to cost around €100.4 million.
The Brazilian is only 19th in the study that takes into account performance for club and country, age, position, league of employment and economic level of the selling club in Europe's "Big Five" leagues - England, Spain, Italy, Germany and France. There are 166 players valued at more than €50 million.
England forward Raheem Sterling may be worth his weight in gold for Manchester City, but he has to settle for second in the list on €223.7 million. Liverpool's Egyptian striker Mohamed Salah is third on €175.1 million.
Barcelona's Lionel Messi (€125.5 million), the Argentinian who was named the world's best footballer for the sixth time last year, is eighth while five-time winner, Juventus' Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo (€80.3 million), is not even among the top 20.
Eleven of the top 20 play for Premier League clubs, including Tottenham striker Harry Kane at sixth (€150.5 million).
European champions Liverpool have three of the costliest players in their respective positions - Brazilian goalkeeper Alisson at €87.6 million, Dutch centre-back Virgil van Dijk at €92.7 million and English fullback Trent Alexander-Arnold at €110.5 million.
Of the 20 men who are January transfer window targets, most of their valuations do not fall within the CIES estimates.
Borussia Dortmund's Jadon Sancho (€168.9 million) is a target for Chelsea and Manchester United, who both reportedly value the England winger at €140 million.
Chelsea are also looking at a €80 million offer for RB Leipzig's German forward Timo Werner, whom CIES values at €112 million.
United's reported willingness to part with €118 million for Leicester's James Maddison is closer to CIES' valuation, however, with the English midfielder valued at €112.4 million.
Spanish giants Real Madrid and Barcelona view Inter Milan's Lautaro Martinez to be worth his release clause of €111 million. The Argentinian striker is 10th on CIES' list on €115.7 million.