Manchester United have paid £210million over true market value for new signings over the past decade – more than any other club in Europe’s big five leagues.
The Old Trafford club have spent a total of £1.4billion on 33 players since 2012 when they were only worth a combined £1.19bn, according to a study by the CIES Football Observatory.
Their signings include the £89m purchase of Paul Pogba, then a world record fee, the £85m spent on Antony this summer and £80m to buy Harry Maguire
Jadon Sancho, Romelu Lukaku, Angel Di Maria, Casemiro, Bruno Fernandes, Anthony Martial, Fred and Lisandro Martinez have also cost United in excess of £50m during that time frame.
The research also found that Juventus had paid £208m over the odds on 36 new players and Paris Saint-Germain overpaid by £142m on 31.
In an indication that selling clubs inflate transfer fees for Premier League buyers, Aston Villa, Chelsea, Arsenal and Everton also feature in the top 10.
Villa, who have splashed out on the likes of Emiliano Buendia, Ollie Watkins and Leon Baily in recent years, overpaid by £130m on what CIES calculated to be the true value of the players signed.
Chelsea ranked sixth, just behind Real Madrid, having spent £1.16bn on 36 signings who were more accurately worth £1.04bn, an apparent overspend of just under £120m.
They include the £97.5m signing of Romelu Lukaku in 2021, only for the Belgian striker to return on loan to Inter Milan a year later, plus the likes of Wesley Fofana, Kai Havertz and Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Arsenal, just below Chelsea, were found to have spent £113m over the odds on 33 players since 2012, with Everton’s overspend on market estimation coming in at £85m.
Newcastle United, Leicester, Southampton, Liverpool and West Ham also figure in the top 20, with other English top-flight teams not too far behind.
The CIES data excluded player signed by triggering buy-out or option-to-buy clauses, with the market values assessed by their own scientific methods.