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Manchester City most expensive signings ever

Mon 14 March 2022 | 17:30

Who are the most expensive signings in Manchester City history? How much has the English club spent on signing these arrivals? Follow us below as we take a look at these footballers’ careers and get to see how they have fared at the Etihad Stadium throughout the years.

When it comes to global success in football and any other business, money speaks first as it is one of the most important reasons why a certain player joins a particular club. Even Real Madrid would not be able to bring in world-class players if they did not pay sufficient wages every week. That is why Manchester City have managed to step onto the big stage to further expand their territory and their fame by collecting trophies year-in year-out.

The Blues were not considered to be much of a problem for other clubs in the English top-flight in the mid-2000s. But they are now one of the most formidable football clubs in the world and have managed to lift more than a dozen trophies since their acquisition more than a decade ago. None of this newly-earned success would have been possible if it weren’t for the world-class footballers that they have signed over the years.

But which of these arrivals have cost the Citizens enough money to earn a spot amongst the

Manchester City most expensive signings ever

? Were all of these players worth all the money spent on bringing them into the club? Were there any flops amongst these arrivals?

Surely you too are eager to find out more about the most expensive Manchester City transfers of all time as you can finally see which signings were effective and which were not. So read on as we provide detailed information about these footballers and get to see how they performed at City throughout the years.

Manchester City most expensive transfers ever

From the former Liverpool star Raheem Sterling and Everton center-back John Stones, to their most recent arrival Jack Grealish, there are some big names on the list of

Manchester City

most expensive signings ever. So without further ado, here is everything you need to know about these footballers and their respective careers at the Etihad Stadium.

John Stones

  • Transfer fee: €55.5M

  • Market value: €28M

England have always produced great footballers as they are literally the founders of association football. Most of the attention right now is on the fullbacks as England have produced several world-class fullbacks in recent years, but that does not mean that they do not have any solid talents in other positions as well. One of the highly talented footballers to have been born and raised in England is John Stones, who is lauded as one of the best center-backs in the country.

The 27-year-old rose up the ranks at Barnsley’s youth academy to join their senior squad in 2012, thus starting his professional career. He spent a year at Barnsley before joining

Everton

for €3.5 million in the 2013 January transfer window. He went on to make a total of 95 appearances across all competitions for the Premier League side, before finally earning himself a place amongst the

most expensive signings in Manchester City

history after joining the Cityzens for a massive fee of €55.5 million in the summer of 2016.

It is quite clear that Man City are not joking when they come in knocking on any team’s door to acquire a player’s services. Since his arrival at City, the Englishman has made more than 180 appearances, managing to score 12 goals and provide a couple of assists in the process. Of course it is not his lethality in front of goal that Pep Guardiola requires, since the Spaniard needs Stones’ defensive prowess instead.

Being on the list of Manchester City all-time most expensive signings, John Stones has already won several trophies with his current club, including three Premier League titles, the FA Cup, four English League Cups and two Community Shields.

Benjamin Mendy

  • Transfer fee: €57.5M

  • Market value: €10M

Benjamin Mendy might be the most expensive footballer at Prison FC for the time being as he is currently on trial for rape allegations. But there was a time not so long ago when the Frenchman was considered to be one of the

Manchester City most expensive signings ever

instead. Mendy started his career at AC Le Havre after graduating from their youth squad back in 2011. He quickly switched clubs to join

Marseille

in 2013 in order to further boost his career as a promising left-back.

After spending three years at Marseille, Mendy decided to join AS

Monaco

for €13 million in 2016 and went on to attract quite a lot of attention for his incredible performance at the French club, which is why Pep Guardiola and his investors came in knocking on Monaco’s door with a bag full of cash in the 2017 summer transfer window. The France international joined the Cityzens for a whopping fee of €57.5 million and earned himself a place on the list of Manchester City most expensive transfers ever.

Since his arrival at the Etihad Stadium, Mendy has gone through a lot, most of which have been quite difficult to deal with for the Frenchman. Despite winning the World Cup with France at the 2018 World Cup in Russia and lifting several trophies with Pep Guardiola and his men, Mendy got himself in trouble with the crimes of sexual nature that he allegedly committed throughout the years.

Prior to his arrest in the summer of 2021, Mendy had managed to make a total of 75 appearances for his side and was considered to be one of the best left-backs in the world. Now, however, everyone is waiting to see if one of the most expensive signings in Manchester City history can prove his innocence or not, since both his career and personal life depend on the result of his court session.

Rodri

  • Transfer fee: €65M

  • Market value: €70M

Having spent more than a billion Euros on bringing in new and talented footballers throughout the years, Manchester City seem to have no problem in signing new players every year. For this particular English club, the process of signing a world-class player comes as easy as making a phone call. That is why they were able to sign Rodri, who is lauded as one of the greatest defensive midfielders of his generation.

Rodri gained prominence as a talented midfielder during his days at

Atletico Madrid

. Despite having graduated from Atleti’s youth academy back in 2007, Rodri went on to join Villarreal’s U19 side in 2013, which is why Diego Simeone’s side had to pay €20 million in 2018 to bring him back to the club. The Spaniard played in a total of 47 games for Los Rojiblancos in the single season that he spent with them and managed to score 3 goals and provide a single assist in the process.

Even though Rodri is not a center-back, he is still needed more for his defensive prowess and his vision, which enable him to see the opposition’s passing lanes and cut them with relative ease. Every club needs a man like Rodri to play the role of their main pillar in the middle of the pitch. That is why City paid an eye-watering fee of €65 million to sign the Spain international in 2019, making him one of the

Manchester City most expensive signings ever

.

Rodri has since surpassed the 100-game mark and has made more than 130 appearances for the Sky-Blues, scoring 9 goals and providing 8 assists in the process. His presence at the middle of the park give Pep Guardiola’s squad the stability they need to work as a unified team and a well-oiled machine. It is unbelievable that the former

Villarreal

midfielder is only 25 years old and has certainly got the potential to further boost his stats, increasing his market value as a result.

With City’s spending habits, it might not take long for someone else to take Rodri’s place on the list of Manchester City all-time most expensive signings. For the time being, however, the Spaniard is still enjoying his time as one of the best and most expensive midfielders in the world.

Raheem Sterling

  • Transfer fee: €63.5M

  • Market value: €85M

Next on the list of Manchester City most expensive signings ever is Raheem Sterling, who made the headlines for switching clubs inside the Premier League, instead of joining a club outside the English top-flight. Sterling used to be the golden boy of Liverpool, who was destined to be the future prospect of the Reds. He rose up the ranks at Liverpool’s youth academy and joined their senior side in 2012.

As an incredibly versatile forward, Sterling was lauded for his adaptability, speed and agility, which is why he went on to make a total of 129 appearances for

Liverpool

, scoring 23 goals and providing 25 assists in the process. However, not everything went the way the Englishman might have wanted, which is why he joined Liverpool’s current league rivals Manchester City for a massive fee of €63.5 million in the 2015 summer transfer window.

The 27-year-old has turned into one of Pep Guardiola’s most effective wingers, and he could have been Man City’s main and only winger on the left had the Blues not have such a massive squad depth. Sterling’s current market value is believed to be around €85 million, which is a lot more than what City paid to acquire his services seven years ago.

Being on the list of

Manchester City most expensive transfers ever

, the former Liverpool winger has made more than 320 appearances for Pep Guardiola’s side, scoring 127 goals and providing 97 assists in the process. Perhaps the only thing that he aims to win with his current side right now, is the Champions League title.

Aymeric Laporte

  • Transfer fee: €65M

  • Market value: €45M

John Stones is not the only center-back on the list of

Manchester City all-time most expensive signings

, since there are a couple more defenders amongst these costly arrivals. One of these center-backs is Aymeric Laporte, who joined the Cityzens from Athletic Bilbao for €65 million in the 2018 January transfer window.

Athletic Bilbao

have a habit of selling their exciting prospects to mostly English clubs for a massive profit.

Laporte’s case was exactly that as the Spanish side profited quite a lot from his sale. The France-born Spaniard is considered to be one of the best defenders in the world as the 27-year-old has managed to solidify Man City’s backline with his defensive prowess. The Spain international has appeared in more than 135 games for the Premier League side and has even managed to score 11 goals and provide 3 assists in the process, even though scoring goals and providing assists is not his main objective.

Laporte’s current market value is estimated to be around €45 million, which is actually lower than what City paid to acquire his services. But that certainly has not stopped the Spanish center-back from performing at his best level and gaining the respect of his club’s supporters. The former Athletic Bilbao defender has been a vital part of Guardiola’s era and has helped them win three Premier League trophies, the FA Cup, four English League Cups and two Community Shields. Laporte is usually part of a rotation-based tactical system, in which he constantly switches places with John Stones on the Starting-XI.

Joao Cancelo

  • Transfer fee: €65M

  • Market value: €60M

Joao Cancelo is not only one of the Manchester City most expensive signings ever, but also the most expensive right-back in the world right now. The 27-year-old was so good that Pep Guardiola simply couldn’t wait to sign him from Juventus. Cancelo is a Benfica academy graduate who joined the Portuguese club’s senior side back in 2014. He went on to spend some time on loan at Valencia and Inter, before joining Juventus in the 2018 summer transfer window.

As mentioned before, Cancelo was so spectacular that Man City came knocking on

Juventus

’ door with a bag full of cash only a year after his arrival at the Italian side. The Portugal international joined City for a reported fee of €65 million in 2019 and earned himself a place on the list of most expensive Manchester City transfers of all time. Even Paris Saint-Germain’s recently-acquired Achraf Hakimi was not able to match Joao Cancelo’s transfer fee, which goes to show how much City actually value their arrivals.

The Portuguese right-back is without a doubt one of the best fullbacks in the world and thanks to his versatility, he has been able to serve his club on both flanks throughout the season. This matter has in turn earned Cancelo a place on both the lists of best Premier League left-backs and the best Premier League right-backs.

Being on the list of Manchester City most expensive signings ever, the former Benfica fullback has managed to make more than 110 appearances for the English side, scoring 7 goals and providing 15 assists in the process. Cancelo might not be the most prolific defender in history, but he creates a balance between his offense and defense, which is why he is preferred by Guardiola.

Riyad Mahrez

  • Transfer fee: €67.8M

  • Market value: €40M

Next on the list of

most expensive Manchester City transfers of all time

is Riyad Mahrez, who joined the Cityzens from

Leicester City

for a whopping fee of €67.8 million in 2018. Mahrez played a vital role in Leicester City’s magical title-winning season, in which they lifted the Premier League trophy as underdogs and against all odds.

With Claudio Ranieri managing his men back then, Mahrez attracted quite a lot of attention for his incredible performance week-in week-out, which is why many clubs were interested in signing the Algeria international after witnessing the efforts he had made in order to help the Foxes lift the Premier League trophy. The 31-year-old is considered to be one of the best wingers in the world, even though his market value has dropped significantly compared to what City paid to acquire his services.

As one of the Manchester City most expensive signings ever, the three-time Premier League champion has made more than 170 appearances for the Sky-Blues, scoring 60 goals and providing 44 assists in the process. Mahrez currently plays the role of a supersub in most games, coming on as a fresh set of lungs to further push up the pitch to put pressure on the opposition with his technique and pace.

Ruben Dias

  • Transfer fee: €68M

  • Market value: €75M

Footballers rarely get to boost their market value to an extent which surpasses their transfer fees. But Ruben Dias seems to have achieved this feat as his current market value is higher than what Man City paid to acquire his signature in 2020. The Portuguese center-back is considered to be one of the toughest defenders of the current generation of defenders and he has certainly got a bright future ahead of himself.

Dias started his career at

Benfica

’s senior squad after rising up the ranks at the club’s youth academy. He spent three years at Benfica before joining the Cityzens for a whopping €68 million in September 2020, which made Dias one of the most expensive center-backs in the world. Since his arrival, the 24-year-old has been a sensational defender for Pep Guardiola’s side as he has helped them secure the Premier League title, while also boosting their chances of winning the Champions League.

Even though Guardiola is yet to get his hands on the European trophy after spending so much money at City, they are still one of the favorites to lift the UCL trophy at the end of the 2021-22 season. Dias’ incredible performance at City has led him to quickly become a regular starter at the English club. He has already made more than 80 appearances across all competitions and has even managed to score 3 goals while providing 4 assists.

Of course just like Aymeric Laporte and John Stones, Ruben Dias is mostly needed and lauded for his defensive prowess, which has turned Man City’s backline into an almost impenetrable wall. They have only conceded 18 goals in 28 league games, which goes to show how vital Ruben Dias’ presence at the heart of their defense has been. Being on the list of Manchester City most expensive signings ever, the Portugal international has without a doubt been one of the more vital and effective arrivals at the English club.

Kevin de Bruyne

  • Transfer fee: €76M

  • Market value: €90M

With his laser-guided passes and eagle-eyed vision, Kevin de Bruyne is truly one of the best midfielders in the whole world right now. The Belgian attacking midfielder started his career at KRC Genk, before being a castaway at Chelsea and then finding his true potential at VfL Wolfsburg. He joined Manchester City from the German club for a massive fee of €76 million in the summer of 2015 and has since turned himself into a midfield powerhouse.

The 30-year-old has achieved so much at his current club and is certainly eyeing a Champions League trophy as well. The incredibly versatile midfielder has made more than 290 appearances for Man City throughout his career and has managed to score 77 goals and provide 115 assists in the process. These stats are truly wonderful and fans can’t wait to see more of the Belgium international week-in week-out.

Jack Grealish

  • Transfer fee: €117M

  • Market value: €80M

The man who broke the record for the most expensive English footballer ever, is the man who broke the record for the most expensive Manchester City arrival ever. That man’s name is Jack Grealish, who attracted quite a lot of attention during his days at

Aston Villa

and went on to cement his place amongst the best footballers in the world after his display at Euro 2020.

City paid an eye-watering figure of €117 million to sign the England international from Aston Villa in the 2021 summer transfer window and that is why the club’s supporters expected a lot from the 26-year-old winger. However, things have been going as well as the former Aston Villa forward might have expected since he has failed to live up to the billing in his current form.

Grealish has recorded less than 10 goals and assists in total throughout the 2021-22 season, which has had its toll on the new arrival throughout the campaign. We will have to wait and see if the Englishman can bounce back and finally settle in at his new club, or if the most expensive signing in Man City’s history will turn out to be a flop in the end according to City’s standards.

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