Manchester United's 22 most expensive transfer deals of all time

Manchester United have made two big moves in the transfer window once again to strengthen the squad in pursuit of silverware.

Raphael Varane will join Jadon Sancho at the club, with BBC Sport reporting Manchester United have agreed a fee with Real Madrid for the defender.

Varane and Sancho are now among Manchester United’s record transfers, but where exactly do they fit in?

Photo by Eddie Keogh – The FA/The FA via Getty Images

United have spent many high fees through the years, with mixed success. Below is a run down of the club’s 21 most expensive incoming transfer fees of all time…


Manchester United’s most expensive transfers of all time

  1. Paul Pogba

    Signed from Juventus in 2016: £89 million

  2. Harry Maguire

    Signed from Leicester City in 2019: £80 million

  3. Romelu Lukaku

    Signed from Everton in 2017: £75 million

  4. Jadon Sancho

    Signed from Borussia Dortmund in 2020: £72.6 million

  5. Angel di Maria

    Signed from Real Madrid in 2014: £59.7 million

  6. Aaron Wan-Bissaka

    Signed from Crystal Palace in 2019: £50 million

  7. Bruno Fernandes

    Signed from Sporting in 2020: £47 million plus add-ons

  8. Fred

    Signed from Shakhtar in 2018: £47 million

  9. Juan Mata

    Signed from Chelsea in 2014: £37 million

  10. Anthony Martial

    Signed from Monaco in 2015: £36 million plus add-ons

  11. Donny van de Beek

    Signed from Ajax in 2020: £35 million plus add-ons

  12. Raphael Varane

    Signed from Real Madrid in 2021: £34.2 million plus add-ons

  13. Victor Lindelof

    Signed from Benfica in 2017: £31 million

  14. Dimitar Berbatov

    Signed from Tottenham in 2008: £30.75 million

  15. Rio Ferdinand

    Signed from Leeds in 2002: £30 million

  16. Eric Bailly

    Signed from Villarreal in 2016: £30 million

  17. Ander Herrera

    Signed from Athletic Bilbao in 2014: £29 million

  18. Juan Sebastian Veron

    Signed from Lazio in 2001: £28 million

  19. Marouane Fellaini

    Signed from Everton in 2013: £27.5 million

  20. Wayne Rooney

    Signed from Everton in 2004: £27 million

  21. Luke Shaw

    Signed from Southampton in 2014: £27 million

  22. Henrikh Mkhitaryan

    Signed from Borussia Dortmund in 2016: £26.5 million

Hits and misses

We have tried to keep the above list simple with the main transfer fees as opposed to including add-ons as the main fee. Otherwise Amad would be in there, but just £19 million of his £37 million fee was paid up front, with the rest in incentive laden bonuses. Indeed, Anthony Martial’s Ballon d’Or clause is unlikely ever to be activated.

Photo by Alex Livesey – Danehouse/Getty Images

There have been many hits and misses through the years. Some would argue United have not got full value on the £89 million paid for Paul Pogba, but the club have had five years out of him. Angel di Maria lasted just one, and Romelu Lukaku only two seasons.

Bruno Fernandes already looks like a bargain, and hopefully in time Jadon Sancho will represent similar value for money.

Lower down the list, British players like Luke Shaw, Wayne Rooney and Rio Ferdinand have all provided outstanding value to the club over their careers. Hopefully Sancho can do the same.

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