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SBD Global/September 4, 2013/Finance

FIFA: Transfers Up 29% From Last Year; Blatter Claims Lack Of Power To Slow Trend

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Germany's Mesuit Özil signed with Arsenal this week in a transfer from Real Madrid.
FIFA announced on Tuesday that there were 10,454 int'l football transfers in '13 worth a total of $3.36B, an increase of 29% from last year. Declared commission paid to club intermediaries was up 20% to $169M. Most transfers saw players move from Portugal to Brazil and from Argentina to Chile. The streams with the highest total transfer compensation were from Spain to England ($227M) and from Italy to England ($148M) (FIFA). REUTERS' Brian Homewood reported Blatter said on Tuesday that "he was powerless to stop transfer fees from rocketing following the world record fee" of €100M ($132M) paid by Real Madrid for Gareth Bale. Blatter: "(Even) when you say a country is poor or in debt, you always find money in football. If the price of a player is high or not high, I think it's the market that decides and we cannot intervene in the market." Blatter said that he "doubted that any player was worth the sum paid for Bale." Blatter: "If a player is the value of that, I doubt it, but I cannot stop it" (REUTERS, 9/3).

LA LIGA PROFITS: In Madrid, Abraham Romero reported that of the major European fooball leagues, La Liga "had the best summer in terms of revenue from player transfers," according to transfermarkt.es. La Liga clubs received €491M ($646M) in transfer transactions and spent €381M ($501.5M), which was the second-highest amount spent among the Premier League, French Ligue 1, Italian Serie A and German Bundesliga. The Premier League spent €755M ($993.8M) and earned €260M ($342.2M). Gareth Bale €100M ($132M) and Neymar €57M ($75M) were "expensive signings," but La Liga clubs received €60M ($79M) for top transfers Radamel Falcao, who left Atlético Madrid for Ligue 1 Monaco, and €45M ($59.2M) for Mesut Özil, who left Real Madrid for EPL Arsenal (AS, 9/3).

BREAKING THE BANK: AS reported Barcelona VP Josep Maria Bartomeu has "detailed his team's moves in the transfer market this summer" and reiterated that Neymar cost Barcelona €57M ($75M), "despite the speculation." Bartomeu: "We have not spent everything. We have a budget and for the second consecutive year we have not spent everything. The moves that we wanted to make and were able to make have been made" (AS, 9/3).
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