England’s most expensive footballers: top 10 players ranked - including Declan Rice and Mason Mount
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Premier League runners-up Arsenal have completed a club record deal to sign West Ham captain Declan Rice for a figure of around £105 million.
Rice has spent the entirety of his senior career at West Ham and recently lifted the Europa Conference League trophy with The Hammers in what was ultimately his final ever game for the club. The England midfielder arrives as a key addition to an Arsenal team which narrowly missed out on the Premier League title last term.
The Gunners are hoping to go a step further in the Premier League this season and bridge the gap between themselves and champions Manchester City. But they are also faced with the task of competing in the Champions League for the first time in the post Arsene Wenger era.
Rice has been a long term target for a number of Europe’s biggest clubs and is the biggest signing of this summer’s Premier League transfer window so far. The 24-year-old is one of a number of big money English signings and in recent years the likes of Harry Maguire, Jadon Sancho and Jack Grealish have all been involved in major transfers.
But who are the top 10 most expensive English footballers of all time and did they live up to the price tag?
1. Jude Bellingham: £115 million (Borussia Dortmund to Real Madrid)
Jude Bellingham has been one of the most highly coveted young footballers on the planet and he was heavily linked with moves to Premier League giants such as Manchester City and Liverpool.
The young midfielder made his debut for Birmingham City at just 16-years of age, before making the move to Germany to join Borussia Dortmund. Bellingham continued to prosper and was viewed as one of the best players in the German top-flight - making the Bundesliga team of the season on two successive occasions. Whilst also winning last year’s Player of the Year.
Bellingham has also established himself as a first team regular for England. He was a member of the squad which finished runners-up in Euro 2020 and a key part of the team which was eliminated in the quarter-final of last year's World Cup.
Bellingham joins serial winners Real Madrid and links up with the likes of Luka Modric and Toni Kroos as the Spanish giants look to reclaim their domestic and European titles in the 2023/24 campaign.
2. Declan Rice: £105 million (West Ham to Arsenal)*
Declan Rice is the second member of England’s central midfield to make a high profile move this summer and he is set to become the most expensive English footballer in Premier League history.
Rice rose to prominence in 2017 as a central defender for West Ham but has gradually evolved into one of the Premier League’s best defensive midfielders.
The England international has been one of West Ham’s best performers since breaking into the first team and he has won the club’s Player of the Year award in three of the last four seasons.
Rice, who partnered Bellingham during the Qatar World Cup, has already been capped for England on 43 occasions at just 24-years of age and he has been dubbed by some football experts as a future Three Lions captain.
3. Jack Grealish: £100 million (Aston Villa to Manchester City)
Jack Grealish left his boyhood club Aston Villa in 2021 to join Manchester City and became the first ever £100 million footballer from England. The skillful attacking midfielder joined the Aston Villa academy at the age of seven and made his professional debut for the club in 2012.
Grealish was an integral part of Aston Villa’s successful promotion to the Premier League in 2018/19 and arguably an even bigger part of their last gasp survival in the 2019/20 campaign.
His performances quickly caught the attention of England manager Gareth Southgate and he has gradually played a more prominent role in the Three Lions side in recent years.
Grealish has enjoyed great success since making the move to Manchester City - he lifted the Premier League title in his first season and a domestic treble in his second season. In doing so The Citizens became just the fifth team in history to win the league and Champions League in the same season.
Harry Maguire is a polarising figure among many football fans both at international level and club level.
The Yorkshire born defender emerged from his local club Sheffield United in 2011 and followed that with an impressive spell at Hull City, before a move to Leicester.
Maguire earned plaudits for his strong form for The Foxes and his leadership skills quickly made him an asset to the England team during the 2018 World Cup.
This attracted the attention of Premier League giants Manchester United who made Maguire the most expensive English footballer of all time in 2019 at £80 million.
Maguire’s form has been mixed since making the move to Old Trafford four seasons ago. He was a key part of the team which finished second in the 2020/21 campaign but has slipped down the pecking order, particularly after the arrival of manager Erik ten Hag last summer.
5. Jadon Sancho: £73 million (Borussia Dortmund to Manchester United)
The second former Borussia Dortmund player to make this list and arguably one of the longest running transfer sagas in recent years is Jadon Sancho.
The young English midfielder started his career out on the Blue side of Manchester but never made a first team appearance before moving on to Borussia Dortmund.
Sancho made a name for himself in Germany as a teenager and quickly became one of the most sought after players in world football, particularly in 2019/20 when he scored 17 league goals.
This form over four seasons attracted the attention of Manchester United who were desperate from further craft and creativity under manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Sancho is now entering the third year of his career at Old Trafford but he is yet to hit the standards he managed at Dortmund and has struggled for consistency.
6. Mason Mount: £60 million (Chelsea to Manchester United)
Manchester United have made a habit of signing young English footballers and the latest is former Chelsea star Mason Mount.
Mount has spent the entirety of his club career at Chelsea, whilst also earning 36 caps for the Three Lions.
The youngster's best moments include his Champions League triumph in 2021, while he also won the club’s Player of the Season award on two occasions.
However, Mount slipped down the pecking order at Stamford Bridge last season and the player is one of a number of stars to leave after The Blues’ failure to qualify for Europe.
7. Ben White: £50 million (Brighton to Arsenal)
Ben White was an ever present in the Arsenal team that missed out on the Premier League title last season and he has proven an asset to The Gunners due to his ability to play both centre back and right back.
The versatile defender arrived at The Emirates Stadium for £50 million after an impressive season at Brighton and a strong loan spell at Leeds United, which also saw him lift the Championship title.
8. Raheem Sterling: £49 million (Liverpool to Manchester City)
Raheem Sterling’s 2015 move to Manchester City was one which raised a few eyebrows at the time, but he has gone on to establish himself as one of the most successful English footballers of the last decade.
The Jamaican born winger emerged as a key player for Liverpool under the guidance of Brendan Rodgers and impressed fans with his pace and ability to create chances.
Sterling was a member of the 2013/14 team which narrowly missed out on the Premier League title and he quickly established himself as a regular fixture for The Three Lions.
Despite impressing in the Liverpool team many questioned if Sterling was clinical enough in the final third to thrive at Manchester City. But he quickly proved doubters wrong and was amongst the top scorers in the Premier League in many of his seven seasons at the Etihad.
In total Sterling won four Premier League titles, five League Cups and one FA Cup before his surprise departure to Chelsea.
9. Raheem Sterling: £47.5 million (Manchester City to Chelsea)
Raheem Sterling is the only player to make this list twice and he was once again involved in a big money transfer when he relocated to London to join fellow Premier League giants Chelsea.
Sterling has been one of the top performing players in the top-flight for a number of years but he struggled to hit the same standards in his first season at Chelsea as the team to a record low finish of 12th in the Premier League.
The 82-time England international is likely to play a key role in helping the club turnaround their fortunes under new boss Mauricio Pochettino.
Aaron Wan Bissaka was a member of the Crystal Palace academy from the age of 11 and he established himself as a first team regular at the very end of the 2017/18 season when the club was hit with an injury crisis.
The Croydon born right back was a first team regular the following campaign and his defensive prowess and consistency earned him the club’s Player of the Season award.
This prompted a move to Old Trafford in 2019 and he was largely a first team regular during the opening two seasons, but he has slipped down the pecking order in recent times with competition from Diogo Dalot.
Wan Bissaka is yet to represent his country at international level which is a testament to the strength of players such as Kieran Trippier, Trent Alexander Arnold, Kyle Walker and Ben White. The 25-year-old is one of the uncapped players targeting a call up in the near future.
*Declan Rice and Mason Mount are included as the transfers are expected to go through imminently.