New owners put Newcastle United in top 15 of European clubs’ net transfer spend over the past 10 years


A new report has been released on net transfer spending.

The period covered is the last ten seasons, which takes us from 2012/13 to 2021/22 (inclusive).

The report comes from the CIES Football Observatory and ranks current clubs in Europe’s big-5 leagues, namely those of England, Spain, France, Germany and Italy.

So basically, which clubs have the biggest net transfer spend, once you’ve deducted the money generated from sales, from what’s spent on transfers.

As the CIES Football Observatory points out:

“Manchester United topped the list with a negative balance of over €1 billion, ahead of Manchester City and Paris St-Germain. Fourteen English clubs are in the top 20 clubs with the most negative net transfer spend.

Collected with the utmost care by cross-checking all possible sources, official or not, the data includes any additional fees included in transactions, regardless of their actual payment. To the extent of the information available, income from sales commissions is also taken into account.

Top five spending clubs in European leagues over the past 10 seasons (2012/13 – 2021/22 inclusive) – all figures in euros:

Net spending by Premier League clubs over the past 10 seasons (2012/13 – 2021/22 inclusive) – all figures in euros:

Premier League clubs' net transfer spend over the past 10 seasons (2012/13 to 2021/22 inclusive)

As you can see the bottom line is that although you have few obvious exceptions the Premier League is all-powerful when it comes to money, of course massively due to the money generated for all PL clubs through the TV deals both for the UK and worldwide.

At first glance, you might also think, well… Mike Ashley isn’t doing too badly, considering he was in charge of 19 of the last 20 transfer windows.

Newcastle United ranks 15th among all clubs in Europe’s big five leagues, then ninth among Premier League clubs.

However… once you get out of that 20th and final transfer window under the new owners, the story is very different. The lowest figures you’d imagine used from this latest Newcastle United window would be a net transfer spend of £85m, made up of widely reported guaranteed fees for Guimaraes (£35m), Burn (13 million), Wood (£25 million) and Trippier (£12 million). This doesn’t include any potential agreed additions, while no players were sold in January, so nothing to deduct from that £85m minimum figure when it comes to net transfer spend last month.

At the current exchange rate, £85m is around €100m.

So when we then deduct that €100m from the numbers used in the tables above and based solely on Mike Ashley’s last 19 transfer windows…

Newcastle United find themselves with a new total net transfer spend for the past decade of €239m, not €339m, which equates to around €12.6m (around €10.6m). pounds) per window on average net transfer spend under Mike Ashley in his last 19 windows.

It would also mean Newcastle United would drop from 15th to 20th in the European club table above.

While a fall from 9th to 14th in the Premier League club list. The bottom line is that the same five PL clubs would overtake Newcastle in both lists.

Where that leaves us under Mike Ashley is that we are only (***) then above the clubs that have spent so much of the last decade outside the Premier League.

Newcastle United have spent one of the last ten seasons outside the Premier League but for Brentford it’s nine out of ten, Norwich it’s five, Leeds it’s eight, Burnley it’s three and Watford four.

Indeed, once you have that latest NUFC new owner transfer window removed from the totals, you have Brighton (five of the last ten seasons outside of PL), Wolves (that’s six) and Villa (three) all at the Newcastle United’s top net transfer spend over the past decade.

The only exception is Southampton (***), who are still below Newcastle United in net transfer spend over the past decade compared to Mike Ashley’s 19 windows.

However…they generated astonishing transfer fees by buying and developing smart players, meaning they still spent more on players in the last ten years than Mike Ashley allowed, Saints with 592 million euros spent compared to Newcastle’s 548 million euros under Ashley (since summer from 2012).


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