Who is the most expensive player in Premier League history: top 10 biggest transfer fees

Over the years the Premier League has seen some of the biggest transfers in football history

For many families the New Year sparked an end to the high spending and frantic activity that comes with Christmas but for Premier League clubs around the country the excessive spending of the January transfer window has only just begun.

England once again topped the spending charts around the world and top-flight clubs racked up a total of £780.1 million on new recruits with 52 new players arriving on a permanent basis during the winter window. Over the years the Premier League has proven to be one of the highest spending leagues on the planet in terms of transfers, due to the immense revenue that clubs receive and the highly competitive nature of the division.

In recent times players such as Paul Pogba, Romelu Lukaku and Jadon Sancho have all hit the headlines for their big-money moves. But who are the most expensive Premier League players of all time and have they been worth the hefty price tag?

Here is everything you need to know.

Who is the most expensive player in Premier League history?

Chelsea were the biggest spenders in the January transfer window and Graham Potter’s side spent over £323 million to bolster their squad.

The Blues even managed to break the Premier League record by bringing in Argentina midfielder Enzo Fernandez. The 22-year-old signed for Chelsea from Benfica for a British record fee of £106.8 million. Fernandez is tipped to be a bright prospect for the future and he has already played a vital role in helping his country to World Cup glory in 2022.

He replaced the previous record which came in 2021 when Jack Grealish completed his move from Aston Villa to Manchester City in the summer for a fee of £100 million pound.

The 27-year-old picked up his first piece of silverware last season by lifting the Premier League title but was regularly rotated through the season. Grealish hit a total of three Premier League goals from 26 appearances last season.

Who are the most expensive Premier League signings in history?

Over the years the Premier League has seen some of the biggest and most talked about transfers in the history of football.

The biggest transfers have usually taken place in the summer transfer window and Virgil Van Dijk remains the most expensive January signing at £75 million.

Here are the top 10 most expensive signings in Premier League history:

1.Enzo Fernandez - £106.8 million: Benfica to Chelsea

Argentinian youngster Enzo Fernandez joined The Blues from Benfica in an incredible £106.8 million switch.

Fernandez impressed during his six month spell with Benfica and helped the club to top their Champions League group. He also guided Argentina to World Cup glory in Qatar - winning the young player of the tournament award in the process.

The young midfielder has huge expectations to fill in the coming months and he is the sixth most expensive player in football history.

2.Jack Grealish - £100 million: Aston Villa to Manchester City

Jack Grealish was the first £100 million footballer in Premier League history. (Getty Images)
Jack Grealish was the first £100 million footballer in Premier League history. (Getty Images)
Jack Grealish was the first £100 million footballer in Premier League history. (Getty Images)

3.Romelu Lukaku - £92 million: Inter Milan to Chelsea

Romelu Lukaku was formerly on the books at Chelsea from 2011 until 2014 but never established himself as a first team footballer.

The Belgian striker enjoyed fruitful spells with the likes of Everton and West Brom in the Premier League, but appeared to be taking his game to another level after two prolific seasons with Inter Milan - the latter of which saw him lift the Serie A title.

Such form prompted Chelsea to re-sign the forward for £92 million but he never found form for The Blues and was often left on the bench during his first season back.

He is currently on loan with his former club Inter Milan.

4. Paul Pogba - £89 million : Juventus to Manchester United

Paul Pogba was another example of a player returning to his former club.

Pogba came through the academy of Manchester United in 2011 and was promoted to the first team by Sir Alex Ferguson. The French midfielder refused to sign a new contract with The Red Devils and signed for Juventus in 2012 after making just three first team appearances.

Pogba spent four seasons with Juventus and was one of the league’s dominant midfielders - winning four successive Serie A titles and two Coppa Italia trophies.

Pogba returned to Old Trafford for a world record fee of £89 million. The Frenchman spent a total of six seasons with Manchester United winning the EFL Cup and the Europa League in 2017.

Pogba returned to Juventus in the summer of 2022 on a free transfer after a mixed spell with The Red Devils.

5. Antony - £81 million: Ajax to Manchester United

Antony completed a blockbuster £81 million move to Manchester United at the end of the 2022 summer transfer window.

The Brazilian youngster is tipped to be a star for the future at Old Trafford and scored in all of his first three games.

Antony has struggled with injuries since signing for Manchester United and it remains to be seen whether he will prove a good value signing for the club.

6. Harry Maguire - £80 million: Leicester City to Manchester United

Harry Maguire remains the most expensive defender in Premier League history and was signed from Leicester City for £80 million in the summer of 2019.

Maguire has been a first team regular during his time at Old Trafford but has failed to win any silverware so far. His recent form has prompted criticism from section of the Manchester United fan base and he has struggled for first team football this season.

7. Romelu Lukaku - £75 million: Everton to Manchester United

Belgian star Romelu Lukaku has commanded two of the highest transfers in Premier League history and the first was his move from Everton to Manchester United in 2017.

Lukaku was amongst the top Premier League scorers in three of his four seasons with Everton prompting a £75 million transfer.

Lukaku enjoyed a productive first year at Manchester United with 16 goals in his first season and managed 12 in his second season before joining Inter Milan for a fee of around £70 million in 2019.

8. Virgil Van Dijk- £75 million: Southampton to Liverpool

Virgil Van Dijk remains the most expensive January transfer in Premier League history and signed for Liverpool for £75 million in January 2018.

Van Dijk has since established himself as one of the best defenders in Liverpool’s recent history - winning the Premier League, League Cup, FA Cup and Champions League during his first five seasons with the club.

9. Jadon Sancho - £73 million: Borussia Dortmund to Manchester United

During his time in the Bundesliga Jadon Sancho was one of the most coveted young footballers on the planet and his pace and trickery proved to be a nightmare for defenders to deal with.

Manchester United won the race to sign Sancho for £73 million but are yet to see the best of the 22-year-old prospect. He managed just three goals last season in the Premier League.

10. Wesley Fofana - £70 million: Leicester City to Chelsea

The second Leicester City player to feature on this list. Wesley Fofana completed a £70 million transfer to Chelsea in the summer of 2022 after an impressive two year spell with the Foxes.

The 22-year-old is viewed as one of the best defensive prospects in world football and will be hoping to make a great impact on The Blues in years to come.

So far this season Fofana has largely been sidelined by injury and he has managed just four first team appearances in the Premier League.