Premier League Transfer Records – How Did They Fare?

With Angel di Maria in Manchester putting the finishing touches on his move from Real Madrid, we look at the progression of the British transfer record in the Premier League era…

…what the fees involved would be worth now and how successful the moves turned out to be.

Roy Keane, £3.7 million, July 1993

Roy Keane signs for United

Keane’s transfer record after signing for Manchester United from Nottingham Forest didn’t last long, but his legacy at Old Trafford certainly has. Eight years after his acrimonious departure, the club are still trying to replace him.

Success of move: 9/10
Value in 2014 with inflation: £6,642,644

Duncan Ferguson, £4 million, August 1993


Ferguson’s move from Dundee United to Glasgow Rangers certainly wasn’t as fruitful as Keane’s. He played just 14 times for the Gers and was sentenced to three months in prison for head-butting Raith Rovers’ John McStay.

Success of move: 2/10
Value in 2014 with inflation: £7,150,743

Chris Sutton, £5 million, July 1994

Soccer - FA Carling Premiership - Chris Sutton Signs For Blackburn Rovers

Eyebrows were raised at the fee involved in Sutton’s move from Norwich City to Blackburn Rovers, but his first season at Ewood Park justified the record price tag. He formed a devastating “SAS” partnership with Alan Shearer, firing Rovers to a Premier League title with fifteen league goals.

Success of move: 7/10
Value in 2014 with inflation: £8,770,833

Andy Cole, £7 million, January 1995

Soccer - FA Carling Premiership - Andy Cole Signs For Manchester United

Cole’s move came out of the blue and shocked the football world. He had a mixed time at United, with his most successful period coming during United’s Treble season when he forged a symbiotic partnership with Dwight Yorke.

Success of move: 7/10
Value in 2014 with inflation: £12,110,958

Stan Collymore, £8.5 million, July 1995


Collymore bagged 28 goals in 64 games at Liverpool but, due to off-field controversies, the club had no qualms in moving him on after just two seasons.

He contributed to some memorable Premier League matches, not least the 4:3 win over Newcastle United, and enjoyed a decent partnership with Robbie Fowler.

Success of move: 5/10
Value in 2014 with inflation: £14,400,402

Alan Shearer, £15 million, July 1996

Soccer -  Alan Shearer - Newcastle United  -

Kevin Keegan beat off competition from Man United to clinch the signing of Shearer in 1996, whom he felt was the final piece of the jigsaw in his exciting side.

They certainly got value for money, as Shearer stayed with the Toon for ten years, but he failed to propel them to a trophy. However, he remains the Premier League’s all-time top scorer.

Success of move: 9/10
Value in 2014 with inflation: £21,645,785

Rio Ferdinand, £18 million, November 2000 & £29.1 million, July 2002

Rio Ferdinand Leeds United

Ferdinand’s £18 million price tag when signing for Leeds United from West Ham was widely derided, but the Yorkshire club made a neat £12 million profit two years later when he joined Manchester United.

He left Old Trafford this summer having won a myriad of honours, including several Premier League titles and the Champions League.

Success of moves: 8/10
Value of £18 million in 2014 with inflation: £24,339,381
Value of £30 million in 2014 with inflation: £42,525,252

Juan Sebastian Veron, £28.1 million, July 2001

Man Utd Veron signing

Ferdinand would have broken his own record were his moves not either side of Veron’s ill-fated transfer to United.

While he performed better than a lot of critics give him credit for, particularly in Europe, Sir Alex Ferguson struggled to fit him into an already successful midfield.

Success of move: 3/10
Value in 2014 with inflation: £37,794,798

Andriy Shevchenko, £30,800,000, July 2006


Jose Mourinho never really seemed to warm to Shevchenko, having had the striker foisted upon him by Roman Abramovich.

He scored just nine goals for Chelsea before being jettisoned back to former clubs AC Milan on loan and, eventually, Dynamo Kiev.

Success of move: 2/10
Value in 2014 with inflation: £38,071,804

Robinho, £32.5 million, September 2008

Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Manchester City v Chelsea - City of Manchester Stadium

Robinho started brightly at Manchester City following his move from Real Madrid on the day the Abu Dhabi United Group invested in the club.

However, poor attitude and injuries led to him falling down the pecking order and he was back in Brazil on loan with Santos within eighteen months.

Success of move: 3/10
Value in 2014 with inflation: £37,332,275

Fernando Torres, £50 million, January 2011

Britain Soccer Chelsea Torres

Due to the secrecy involved in Carlos Tevez’s move across Manchester in 2009, it’s hard to determine if the actual transfer fee paid broke any records.

Fernando Torres’ big-money transfer from Liverpool to Chelsea in January 2011 certainly did. The Spaniard has flopped spectacularly at Stamford Bridge, failing to reproduce his blistering form with Atletico Madrid and Liverpool.

It hasn’t stopped him picking up numerous club and international trophies during his time at Chelsea though.

Success of move: 3/10
Value in 2014 with inflation: £53,813,378

*All inflation figures calculated using the Retail Price Index (