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SBD Global/September 2, 2014/Finance

English Premier League Club's Summer Transfer Spending Hits $1.2 Billion Mark

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ManU signed Colombian striker Radamel Falcao on loan from Monaco on Monday.
Premier League clubs have spent £750M ($1.2B) so far on new players during the summer transfer window, "having broken their previous record" of £630M set last year, according to Bill Wilson of the BBC. Analysis from Deloitte shows that of the money spent so far, £480M ($797M) has gone overseas, £210M ($349M) to Premier League clubs and £60M ($200M) to Football League teams. The transfer window closed at 11pm on Monday. It "is also the closing transfer deadline day in the English Football League, and in the Scottish leagues." Deloitte's Sport Business Group partner Dan Jones said, "There are a number of factors contributing to this summer's spend, including the showcase for global talent a World Cup provides. However, one of the main drivers of Premier League spending continues to be the increased resources clubs now have as a result of improved broadcast deals" (BBC, 9/1). In London, Barney Thomson wrote ManU, which broke the British transfer record last week when it paid Real Madrid £59.7M ($99M) for Angel Di Maria, "set the pace early on Monday with a deal to sign Colombian striker Radamel Falcao in a season-long loan from Monaco" -- with the option to buy him for more than £40M ($66M). According to some estimates, ManU has now paid more than £400M ($665M) "to assemble its current squad." Some of the biggest deals include Liverpool -- "flush with cash from offloading controversial star Luis Suárez" for £75M ($125M) (FINANCIAL TIMES, 9/1).

BREAKING THE BARRIER: Also in London, Ben Rumsby wrote breaking the £1B ($1.7B) barrier in the summer window alone "would require cheques to be written to the tune of almost a quarter of that figure today"-- but the "desperation of many Premier League clubs meant it could not be entirely ruled out." The "FFP time bomb threatening to engulf" Queens Park Rangers thanks to its overspending during its last top-flight campaign "is proving no deterrent" to it throwing money at another survival battle. Its £26.5M ($44M) "is more than double wagered by fellow promoted sides Leicester City and Burnley combined" (TELEGRAPH, 8/31). In London, Jack de Menezes wrote with Falcao set to move to Old Trafford on a season-long loan, ManU’s spending this summer will rise to just more than £141.7M ($235M) -- "and that figure will increase further" when the £14.25M ($24M) deal for Daley Blind is confirmed. Even though ManU Exec Vice Chair Ed Woodward announced that ManU had between £150M-£200M ($249M-$332M) to rebuild the squad this summer, "few will have expected such major moves for the likes of Di Maria and Falcao, although fans of the 20-time English champions remain concerned that unless a central midfielder and defender is signed before the clock strikes zero, they will endure a second straight year out of the Champions League" (INDEPENDENT, 9/1).
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