Transfer spending in the Premier League has reached £1 billion in a calendar year for the first time.
The English summer transfer window closed on Tuesday, with close-season spending reaching a new record of £870 million, according to analysis by business advisory firm Deloitte.
This marked a rise of four per cent on the 2014 figure of £835m and moves overall spending to the £1bn barrier when added to the £130m outlay by clubs during the January market.
Alex Thorpe, senior manager in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, said: “With all 20 of the Premier League clubs now ranked in the top 40 globally by revenue, we have seen clubs across the league compete successfully in the market for international talent.
“Premier League clubs’ gross spending on players from overseas clubs this summer totalled more than half a billion pounds.
“Looking across Europe, Premier League clubs’ gross and net spending this summer is more than double that of any other European league. The driving force behind this is the growth and distribution mechanism of the league’s broadcast rights.”
Manchester United’s deadline-day swoop for Monaco youngster Anthony Martial took spending on the final day to around £90m – up from around £85m 12 months ago.
United’s neighbours, Manchester City, recorded the highest gross spend by a Premier League club in the English summer window, with big-money moves to bring in Raheem Sterling, Nicolas Otamendi and Kevin De Bruyne making up the bulk of a £160m outlay.
The combined gross spending of the four English teams taking part in the Champions League – City, United, Chelsea and Arsenal – stands at £340m, or 40% of the Premier League’s total.
Across Europe’s other ‘big five’ leagues, Serie A recorded the next highest gross spend of £405m. This was a shade above the £400m cumulatively brought up by La Liga, while the figure stood at £290m and £220m, respectively, in the Bundesliga and Ligue 1.