The footballing landscape has changed over the last decade as clubs grow increasingly willing to spend vast sums on recruitment. Since Cristiano Ronaldo’s record-breaking switch to Real Madrid in 2009, 13 footballers have been sold for higher fees – Neymar now possesses the transfer record courtesy of his £198million move to Paris Saint-Germain.
However, the Brazilian – who is no longer a spring chicken at the age of 30 – is not among the most valuable footballers in the world, according to transfermarkt.
As it stands, the most valuable XI is worth just a touch under £1billion, with players from the Premier League, La Liga, the Bundesliga and Ligue 1 included.
The most valuable goalkeeper is former Chelsea and current Real Madrid star Thibaut Courtois, who is rated at £54m.
Moving into defence, the Premier League is well-represented. Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold is the highest-value defender in world football with a valuation of £72m. Manchester City centre-half Ruben Dias is marginally behind at £67.5m.
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Bayern Munich account for the rest of the defence, with Alphonso Davies and summer signing Matthijs de Ligt worth an eye-watering combined sum of £126m.
Progressing into midfield and there are a number of the world’s most promising young players included. Barcelona starlet Pedri lines up alongside Borussia Dortmund sensation Jude Bellingham – the pair being valued at £81m each. That being said, it might be expected that they would cost considerably more than that if they were to move away from their current employers any time soon.
The midfield is rounded off by Man City academy graduate Phil Foden, with the England star having enjoyed a meteoric rise since his breakthrough at the Etihad Stadium. Like his young counterparts, the 22-year-old is rated at £81m.
Finally, the star-studded attack boasts some absolutely sensational forwards – and indeed ones that would cost a pretty penny, should they be available for transfer any time soon.
The final Premier League representative is City’s Erling Haaland, who joins teammates Dias and Foden in the side. Despite being purchased for just £51m in the summer, the Norwegian is already valued at an astonishing £135m after his blistering, 14-goal start to the season.
He leads the line alongside Brazilian winger Vinicius Jr who is valued at £108m after a fantastic few years with Real Madrid. The 22-year-old scored the winner in last season’s Champions League final against Liverpool.
The final player included in the XI will come as no surprise – Paris Saint-Germain striker Kylian Mbappe. The Frenchman is the most valuable player in the world, worth a breathtaking £144m.