Within the five major leagues in Europe, Manchester United gained the title of having the biggest transfer loss over the past ten years. They have a net spend of more than €1 billion or £846m/$1.14bn.
Despite having spent so much and invested on their new additions to the teams per season, the last Manchester United obtained a trophy was in the Premier League of 2012-13–near a decade, matching how long they spent digging their financial hole.
Manchester United Spent €1.545 billion For Transfer Signings
The Football Observatory has published a study outlining the expenditures of Manchester United in regards to their transfers in the last decade. The English football club has the highest negative net spending in comparison to other European clubs, and the study substantiated just how reckless United has been with their transfers.
With the €1.545 billion spent for football player signings, they had only gained €470million from transfer deals when they signed away their players. This is only a superficial image of the excess spending by the club since the value of their money is really on the players they spent on, which makes it even more tragic, considering the recent state of failure from a handful of transfers. Here are some of the biggest transfer flops of Manchester United within the decade:
- Daley Blind, Marcos Rojo, Angel di Maria in 2014 had United spending £14m, £16m, and £59.7m each, and all transfers were regrettable. Di Maria had the highest monetary value compared to the other two, and he only lasted one season with United.
- Matteo Darmian and Morgan Schniederlin from 2015, where Manchester United spent £12.9m and £24m respectively. In Damian’s four years in United, the defender failed to leave a mark in the club despite his 60 Premier League appearances.
For midfielder Schneiderlin, the bigger £24m did not amount to much as his stay with United was brief, his stay lasting for two years and his performances not living up to the monetary value the club spent for him.
- Henrikh Mkhitaryan in 2016 with £30m spent on Borussia Dortmund. Back in that year, Mkhitaryan was fought over by a lot of European clubs, and Manchester United managed to win him with the £30m deal. It proved to be more than he was worth with 39 Premier League appearances with no trophy to show for it.
- Romelu Lukaku in 2017 with £75m spent on Everton. Lukaku was sought after back in 2017, and rightly so with the striker’s excellent performance. However, his stay in Manchester United did not quite bring out his max potential.
- Jadon Sancho in 2021 had United spending £73m with very little to show for, despite United’s unflinching pursuit for the winger. So far, he has not made any impact on the team.
Paul Pogba broke the record with an £89.5m transfer fee, with no promising return as his contract ends this season.
Based on Football Observatory‘s study, Manchester City comes close to United, followed by Paris St-Germain, Barcelona, and Arsenal, completing the top five of the clubs with the biggest losses from transfers in the past ten years.