The world's most expensive XI


Paul Pogba's imminent world record move from Juventus to Manchester United has further highlighted football's riches.

We've detailed the most expensive XI ever, in terms of one-off transfer fee paid, and staggeringly the combined valued adds up to £626 million. Remarkably, when Pogba signs Kevin de Bruyne's £62.9 million move to Manchester City will be consigned to the bench of this team!


Gianluigi Buffon (£44.95million)

Gianluigi Buffon
(Michael Probst/AP/PA)

Juventus paid a world record fee for a goalkeeper to lure Buffon from Parma in 2001, with the Italian still number one at the Old Lady now. During his 15-year career in Turin to date, he has won seven Serie A titles, two Coppa Italia titles, and five Supercoppa Italiana titles alongside a World Cup with his country. He has also collected numerous individual awards including the only goalkeeper to win Uefa Club Footballer of the Year.


Lilian Thuram (£35.28million)

Lilian Thuram
(John Walton/EMPICS Sport)

Thuram, who followed Buffon from Parma to Juventus in 2001 in a large-money double move, was also a World Cup winner with France in 1998 and was renowned for his outstanding defensive abilities at both right-back and centre-back, often alternating between the two. Following Juventus' relegation to Serie B in 2006, he moved to Barcelona for £4.25 million on a two-year contract. In 2008, Thuram retired due to a rare heart condition, aged 36.

David Luiz (£42.08million)

David Luiz
(Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP/PA)

The Brazilian defender is the most expensive defender on the list after his move from Chelsea to Paris St Germain in July 2014. During his spell at Chelsea, he won a Champions League and Europa League trophy in back-to-back seasons. Well-known for his long, frizzy hair and his ball-playing ability that does not resemble a natural central defender, he has also covered in defensive midfield, a position that he originally played at the start of his career.

Rio Ferdinand (£39.1million)

Rio Ferdninand
(Phil Noble/PA)

Ferdinand broke the British transfer record twice during his career, first with a £22.1 million move from West Ham to Leeds in November 2002 before the central defender made the controversial switch from Elland Road to arch-rivals Manchester United in July 2002. During his 12 years at Old Trafford, he won six Premier League titles and one Champions League in 2008 before retiring in 2015.

Luke Shaw (£31.88million)

Luke Shaw
(Martin Rickett/PA)

The left-back started his career at Southampton and broke into the first team at the age of 16 in January 2012 and was a regular in the Saints team over the next two seasons, circulating interest from Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City during his time on the south coast. He played for England at the 2014 World Cup aged just 18 before joining Manchester United later that summer to become the world's most expensive teenager.


James Rodriguez (£63.75million)

James Rodriguez
(Paul White/AP/PA)

The Colombian exploded onto the scene during the 2014 World Cup in Brazil where he was the competition's top goalscorer, despite his side being eliminated in the quarter-finals. He was also awarded the goal of the tournament, which prompted Real Madrid to fork out over £60 million to Monaco for his signature, just one year after they paid big money for him to move on from Porto.

Angel Di Maria (£63.75million)

Angel di maria and Luis van Gaal
(Peter Byrne/PA)

An impressive campaign during the 2013/2014 season for Real Madrid saw him score the opening goal in their 2-1 Copa del Rey final win over Barcelona and he was named man of the match in the Champions League final victory over arch-rivals Atletico Madrid. The playmaker then helped Argentina to the World Cup final. Manchester United paid a British record transfer once again to get the Argentinian but he became unsettled and moved to Paris St Germain after just one season.

Kevin de Bruyne (£62.9million)

Kevin de Bruyne
(Martin Rickett/PA)

Deemed surplus to requirements at Chelsea by Jose Mourinho, De Bruyne dominated the Bundesliga after his switch to German side Wolfsburg, particularly in the 2014/2015 season where he contributed 10 goals and 20 assists in 34 league appearances, leading Manchester City to open their chequebook for the 25-year-old. It was a wise decision as he added seven goals and nine assists in his debut campaign at the Etihad despite 10 weeks out with a knee injury.


Gareth Bale (£85.85million)

Real Madrid's Gareth Bale
(Andrew Medichini/AP/PA)

The Welshman's match-winning performances for Tottenham brought interest from Real Madrid as they looked for another Galactico to add to their star-studded squad. They eventually got their man in September 2013, paying the current world-record fee of £85.85 million to form a devastating striking trio of Karim Benzema, Cristiano Ronaldo and Bale. Madrid have secured two Champions League trophies during his three seasons at the club.

Gonzalo Higuain (£76.5million)

Gonzalo Higuain
(Fabrizio Giovannozzi/AP/PA)

Higuain is the most recent of the big money transfers to happen after Juventus paid the release clause in his Napoli contract last week. He broke a 66-year-old Serie A goal record set by Gunnar Nordahl after scoring 36 goals in a single season, sealing it with a hat-trick on the final day of the season. Higuain was a proven goalscorer at Real Madrid before a move to Napoli in 2013, where he scored 89 goals in 140 appearances for the Naples side and is favourite to be the top-scorer for his new club.

Cristiano Ronaldo (£79.9million)

Cristiano Ronaldo
(Manu Fernandez/AP/PA)

Ronaldo's goalscoring ability became noticeable after scoring over 20 goals in all competitions during the 2006/2007 campaign. Then Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson challenged him to score more than 40 goals the next season, which he duly did. Real Madrid became interested in the Portugal captain but had to wait one more year before they could land the winger for just under £80 million - a world-record fee at the time. It has been money well spent as he has notched 30 or more goals in six of his seven seasons at the Bernabeu.

(Source: Transfermarkt)