The ridiculous transfer fees paid by English Premier League football clubs are having a significant impact on the entire market. This is the opinion of the sports economist Christoph Breuer from the German Sports University in Cologne.
“Due to this high willingness to pay in England, the average prices are raised a bit,” said Breuer SID on Wednesday.
“This also applies to the following periods and as a result it becomes more and more difficult for Bundesliga clubs to attract high-quality footballing talent to German clubs,” he explained. In the Bundesliga, record champions Bayern Munich are “the only club that can keep up here”. The other top teams like Borussia Dortmund or the financially strong RB Leipzig “are more likely to mutate into training clubs for top talent,” said Breuer.
Chelsea, in particular, digged deep into their pockets in the transfer period that just ended. The club brought eight players in the winter, including Argentinian world champion Enzo Fernandez from Benfica Lisbon for the Premier League record sum of 121 million euros. Up to 100 million euros are due for the Ukrainian Michailo Mudryk, who was signed by Shakhtar Donetsk.
“It is obvious that the English clubs are ready and willing to pay prices that are well above market prices,” said Breuer: “One would often have expected cheaper transfers, but the payment power there is obviously so great that one is also willing to pay higher prices.”
Chelsea use a loophole in financial fair play rules to handle transfers. Fernandez and Mudryk, for example, were given employment contracts until 2031, so that the Londoners can stretch the transfer fees on the balance sheet. This is “of course not in line with the idea of financial fair play,” said Breuer. UEFA and FIFA are said to be already planning to close this loophole.