The Premier League is host to some of the greatest footballing talents on the planet and, whilst some of these players are homegrown, many are signed for various different fees.
English clubs alone spend hundreds of millions each transfer window in hope of improving their league position. For the players themselves, the Premier League offers the opportunity of playing in one of the most lucrative divisions in world football, with some of the best players, and the chance of progressing their careers even further.
We’ve had a run down of five of the best signings Premier League sides have made since 2010. Do you agree with us?
5. Riyad Mahrez – Le Havre to Leicester City (2014)
Though his signing didn’t come during their Premier League years, Riyad Mahrez certainly deserves a spot on this list for his exploits during the Foxes’ 2015/16 title-winning campaign.
Back in 2014, Leicester ended a nine year stay in the Championship by winning promotion back to the Premier League. One of the key players in their promotion winning squad was January signing Riyad Mahrez. Three goals and five assists in 18 appearances for the Algerian in his first half season at the club quickly made him a popular figure amongst fans.
Prior to making the switch to England for an estimated £450,000 fee, Mahrez played in the second division of French football with AC Le Havre. During his time across the Channel, the 23-year-old made 66 appearances in all competitions, scoring 10 and assisting 12.
After making the move to the East Midlands, Mahrez went on to spend four years at the club, scoring 39 goals and contributing a further 28 assists. The winger played a key role in the Foxes’ 2015/16 campaign, providing 27 goal contributions in 37 league appearances as Ranieri’s side waltzed to the Premier League title against all odds.
In July of 2018, Manchester City made the decision to swoop for the Algerian international in a deal that was worth around £61m. Not only did Leicester get five seasons of talent from Mahrez – they also made a tasty £60m profit.
A great piece of business from start to end!
4. Sergio Aguero – Atletico Madrid to Manchester City (2011)
When it comes to successful Argentines in the Premier League, there aren’t too many that come to mind initially. However, you cannot overexagerate the success of Aguero!
During a five year spell playing for Atletico Madrid, Aguero accumulated 175 league appearances, scoring 74 goals – a record that earned him a big move to Manchester City in July of 2011 for a fee of £36m. During his first season in England, the Argentinian international bagged 30 goals in 48 appearances, leading City to their first ever Premier League title.
Fast forward to now and Aguero has earned himself the reputation as being one of the most elite players to have graced the Premier League. Since signing for the North West outfit nine years ago, Aguero has made 373 appearances in all competitions with a remarkable 255 goals, helping the Cityzens to 13 trophies along the way.
Still only 32 years of age, Aguero certainly has more left in the tank. Not a bad piece of business!
3. N’Golo Kante – SM Caen to Leicester City (2015)
Another mention on this list for Leicester City, showing how impressive their recruitment has been over recent years.
In the 15/16 Premier League season, Leicester made nine signings worth a total of around £45m. One of those signings was French midfielder N’Golo Kante, joining the club for a fee of around £8m.
Prior to his Foxes move, Kante made 81 appearances for SM Caen with 15 goal contributions. However, it wasn’t his attacking qualities that earned him the move to England – it was quite the opposite. A hard tackler with astonishing defensive awareness was what caught the eyes of the Leicester recruitment team.
Returning to the 2015/16 season, Kante played a huge part in Leicester’s remarkable title winning campaign – a season in which he was named as ‘Player of the Year’ in the Premier League as well as being included in the ‘Team of the Year’. Kante played a part in all but one of Leicester’s Premier League fixtures that season. However, his time at Leicester was brief and Chelsea swiftly decided to sign the French international for a fee of £32m. I imagine Leicester would have preferred to have kept Kante around, but when Chelsea triggered his release clause, the champions had no choice other than to settle for £32m, nearly four times his original purchase price. A rather low release clause considering Kante was officially one of the best players in the world that season!
Kante has since won the Premier League again with Chelsea, once again in his debut season for the club. You could easily include both transfers on this list!
2. Kevin De Bruyne – Wolfsburg to Manchester City (2015)
Now then… where do I start?
Kevin De Bruyne started his career in Belgium before joining Chelsea in 2012 for £7m. Yes, you read that correctly. Just £7m.
His time at Chelsea won’t be a period in his career that he looks back on as a success as he made only nine appearances for the London club before being sold to Wolfsburg for £19M. A deal that, at the time, Chelsea thought they’d negotiated well to make £12m profit for a player who made a limited number of appearances. How wrong were they?
During his time at Wolfsburg, De Bruyne made 73 appearances with an impressive 57 goal contributions in this period. Such an impressive return saw him named in the Bundesliga ‘Team of the Year’, as well as being awarded the ‘Footballer of the Year’ for his remarkable efforts. As expected, this caught the eyes of the Manchester City recruitment team who, in 2015, decided to make a move for the attacking midfielder in a deal £68m. At the time, City were under scrutiny for signing a player who only recently failed to make an impact in the Premier League. However, these doubters didn’t have to wait long to be proven wrong.
Since signing five years ago, De Bruyne has made 231 appearances in all competitions with 153 goal contributions. Another remarkable return given the calibre of teams that City have faced in that period. City have had plenty of success in recent years and De Bruyne has played a huge part in all of it with two Premier League titles, four League Cups, and an FA Cup.
I would go as far as saying that Kevin De Bruyne is currently the best player in the Premier League. I don’t think too many people would challenge that.
1. Luis Suarez – Ajax to Liverpool (2011)
Suarez was a relatively unknown 24-year-old forward when he joined Liverpool in 2011. His career has, however, certainly snowballed since!
The Uruguayan spent four seasons at Ajax, a period in which an outstanding goal return had Europe’s biggest clubs fighting to secure his signature. With 111 goals in 159 appearances, it was no shock to see the Reds come in with £23m.
I don’t think it’s too far-fetched to claim that Suarez was one of the best players in Europe during the 12/13 season; even more so during the 13/14 campaign. 31 goals in 33 matches during the campaign almost dragged Liverpool to the Premier League title before ‘slipping’ at the final hurdle. Sorry, Liverpool fans…
Suarez made 133 appearances in all competitions for the Reds, scoring 82 goals and accumulating a further 47 assists – just shy of a goal contribution per game. Despite these impressive returns, Suarez only won one trophy with Liverpool; the League Cup.
However, Suarez followed that award winning campaign by marking his arrival at the World Cup, feasting on the shoulder of Giorgio Chiellini. Doing so earned the striker a four-month ban from all footballing competitions, and the Reds swiftly moved the Uruaguyan on to Barcelona in a £73.6m deal. Suarez proved difficult to replace at first, though the arrivals of Mohammed Salah and Sadio Mané eventually perked things up.
Who do you think is the best signing in the Premier League since 2010? Let us know!
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