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Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Manchester United Are The Best At Winning But Not Spending

Who has been the best at winning the league without spending in the summer? United have been.......Which United would that be then?............Why, Manchester United of course.

United won the Double in 1995-96 while selling three of their most important players and buying nobody (although Eric Cantona came back from his kung-fu suspension in October). Mark Hughes, Paul Ince and Andrei Kanchelskis all left so that the Fergie Fledglings - Nicky Butt, Gary Neville, Phil Neville, David Beckham and Paul Scholes - could make their way into the team. After United lost the first game of the season 3-1 to Aston Villa, Alan Hansen gave us his legendary "you'll never win anything with kids" quote and Kevin Keegan followed it up with his equally famous "I'll love it if we beat them" rant when United overturned a 12-point deficit to catch Newcastle and win the league."

Manchester United indeed spent no money that summer, buying only the reserve goalkeeper Nick Culkin from York City in September. The list below shows how much each Premiership-winner spent in the previous summer (up to the end of August, to include major deals such as Dwight Yorke and Michael Essien that went through in the first couple of weeks of the season). Chelsea, predictably, are miles clear at the bottom, having spent a combined £142m in the summers of 2004 and 2005, but Blackburn are not as low on the list as many people would expect. That's because the most important building blocks of The House That Jack Built - Tim Flowers, Colin Hendry, Tim Sherwood and Alan Shearer - had been purchased in previous seasons before they won the title in 1994-95.

NB: The figures are not exact, because some clubs - Arsenal in particular - often do not disclose transfer fees, so all data has been taken from Soccerbase.

1995-96 Manchester United, n/a

1992-93 Manchester United, £1.1m (Pat McGibbon and Dion Dublin)

1999-2000 Manchester United, £1.5m (Quinton Fortune)

2003-04 Arsenal, £2.5m (Cesc Fábregas, Phillipe Senderos, Jens Lehmann and Gaël Clichy)

1993-94 Manchester United, £3.75m (Roy Keane)

1994-95 Blackburn, £5.3m (Chris Sutton and Robbie Slater)

1996-97 Manchester United, £7.5m (Raimond van der Gouw, Ronny Johnsen, Ole Solskjaer, Karel Poborsky and Jordi Cruyff)

2000-01 Manchester United, £7.8m (Fabien Barthez)

1997-98 Arsenal, £14.55m (Alex Manninger, Manu Petit, Giles Grimandi, Luis Boa Morte, Alberto Mendez, Marc Overmars, Lee Canoville and Christopher Wreh)

2006-07 Manchester United, £18.6m (Michael Carrick)

2001-02 Arsenal, £22.25m (Francis Jeffers, Giovanni van Bronckhorst, Sol Campbell and Richard Wright)

1998-99 Manchester United, £27.75m (Jaap Stam, Jesper Blomqvist and Dwight Yorke)

2002-03 Manchester United, £30m (Rio Ferdinand)

2005-06 Chelsea, £53,4m (Asier del Horno, Scott Sinclair, Lassana Diarra, Shaun Wright-Phillips, Michael Essien)

2004-05 Chelsea, £89.05m (Petr Cech, Arjen Robben, Paulo Ferreira, Mateja Kezman, Didier Drogba, Tiago, Ricardo Carvalho)


Anonymous said...

what a pity, was looking forward to see the stats for 03/04 when arsenal went unbeaten

Anonymous said...

cause now we have one less reason to say to wenger to splash the cash

viraj said...

hopefully we arsenal will get arshavin we need spark and belief and a bit of togetherness

Oliver said...

great and interesting article Carly. Chelsea have surely and evidently bought the league. Come on 90Million in 1 season!