Footballers are transferred for ridiculously high amounts of money these days. Whether it be Neymar's incredible world record move to Paris Saint-Germain or Coutinho's mindboggling transfer to Barcelona, football clubs are not afraid to spend huge amounts of money on the players they want.
Unsurprisingly, the list is dominated by attacking players. Forwards and midfielders are undoubtedly the most popular players of all the big teams and it is no surprise to see their market value at such high prices.
Market values for a particular player are calculated by how well they play, age, their marketability and ability to sell shirts. Without much ado, let us take a look at the 10 most valuable players in the world:
Values courtesy – Transfermarkt
#10 Philippe Coutinho (Barcelona) - £81 million
Having completed his dream move to Barcelona for an eye-watering fee of £142 million, Philippe Coutinho is the 10th most valuable player in world football at the moment. It has been a meteoric rise for the Brazilian playmaker.
Signed from Inter Milan for a paltry £8.5 million by Liverpool in 2013, the little magician soon captured the imagination of Liverpool fans with his stunning performances in the Premier League.
Capable of playing in the centre of the park or as a left-winger, Coutinho with his incisive passing, stunning long-range goals and great dribbling skills is definitely one of the best 'number 10s' in world football at the moment.
Liverpool fought tooth and nail to keep their star man, but in the end, the fee of £142 million and Coutinho's insistence on moving to Barcelona saw the deal go through, making him the second most expensive transfer of all time (behind Neymar).
Touted to be the long-term replacement of Andres Iniesta, Coutinho definitely has the skillset to become a huge success at Barcelona.
#9 Paul Pogba (Manchester United) - £81.4 million
The world’s most expensive player just 1.5 years ago, Paul Pogba, is widely tipped to be a future Ballon d’Or winner by many of his peers and it is easy to see why there is so much hype about the talented 24-year-old midfielder.
An absolute lynchpin of the current Manchester United team, there is a notable difference in the way Jose Mourinho's team plays with and without the mercurial Frenchman. Capable of dominating the midfield battle almost singlehandedly, Pogba can be a devastating and intimidating presence in the centre of the pitch.
Although he initially struggled to live upto his huge transfer fee at Manchester United, In the latter parts of last season he really came into his own and played a crucial role in United's Europa League triumph.
With time, the huge fee paid by Manchester United for Pogba might start looking like a bargain.
#8 Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain) - £81.6 million
French prodigy Kylian Mbappe has certainly lived up to the hype with his mature and brilliant performances for Paris Saint-Germain this season. Currently on loan from former employers Monaco, the 19-year-old is all set to become the second most expensive transfer of all time when PSG finalise the move next summer.
Having burst onto the scene in 2016/17, the young French forward was heavily linked with a move to Real Madrid. However, PSG showed their financial muscle and managed to lure the prodigy to Paris where he has formed a fearsome attacking trio with the likes of Neymar and Cavani.
Mbappe's idol is Cristiano Ronaldo and it is easy to see why. Playing in a style similar to his idol, the Frenchman's blistering pace and calm finishing have already made him one of the best players in world football at the tender age of 19.
If he keeps this up, Mbappe might well become as great a footballer as Cristiano Ronaldo.
#7 Eden Hazard (Chelsea) - £90 million
Chelsea superstar Eden Hazard is the 7th most valuable player in the world. The 27-year-old Belgian has long been talked about as a future Ballon d’Or winner and is definitely one of the best players in the Premier League.
Primarily playing as an attacking midfielder/winger, Hazard really matured as a world-class player during the 2014-15 season where he won the PFA Player of the Year award and guided Mourinho’s Chelsea to a stunning League title.
Linked with a move to Real Madrid ever since then, Hazard has only gone from strength to strength and has added a ruthless component to his game which has made him even more threatening.
The Belgian superstar recently rejected a new contract at Chelsea and we might just see Hazard shake up the transfer market and make a monumental move to Real Madrid in the coming months.
#6 Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid) - £90 million
The Frenchman is one of the best forwards in world football at the moment and his time at Atletico Madrid looks like it is coming to an end with the likes of Manchester United and Barcelona extremely keen on signing the 26-year-old.
Griezmann really burst into life in 2016 where he had a bittersweet year. Undoubtedly Atletico’s star man, Griezmann narrowly missed out on the La Liga, Champions League, and the Euros. However, he did win the Golden boot in Euro 2016 and captured the imagination of fans all over the world with his brilliant performances.
Having had a slightly disappointing 2017 compared to his own high standards, the diminutive Frenchman will be looking to come back roaring in 2018. Blessed with great skill, amazing dribbling skill and a dream of a left foot, the Frenchman might well end up becoming the main story of the January transfer window.
#5 Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City) - £99 million
One of the most complete midfielders in world football, Kevin De Bruyne is undoubtedly the jewel in the Manchester City crown. Known for his immaculate technique, a wide range of passing skills and ability to score spectacular long-range goals, De Bruyne has been key to City’ s consistent performances in both the Premier League and Champions League.
De Bruyne’s importance to Pep Guardiola and the Manchester City team can be seen by these quotes from Guardiola himself. Speaking in an earlier interview, the legendary Spanish manager said:
"I think he is a special, outstanding player. He makes everything. Without the ball he is the first fighter, and with the ball he is clear – he sees absolutely everything."
Achieving some great things in Manchester City, Kevin De Bruyne is arguably the best midfielder in world football at the moment.
#4 Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) - £108 million
One of the greatest players to ever play the game, Cristiano Ronaldo had a stellar first half of 2017 where he won the Champions League and La Liga. Having drawn level with Messi at 5 Ballon d'Ors, the Portuguese superstar will be determined to defy age and prove to everyone once again why he deserves to be considered the best footballer in the world.
Having suffered a stuttering campaign in the League, Ronaldo has shown his true class in the Champions League where he became the first player in the history of the competition to score in all 6 group matches.
With the League already out of Madrid's hands, Ronaldo and co will be determined to have a serious crack at the Champions League one again and it will be interesting to see if the Portuguese superstar manages to salvage Los Blancos' miserable season so far.
It is a testament to the Portuguese superstar's incredible level of play that he is still the 4th most valuable player in the world even at the age of 32..
#3 Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) - £108.4 million
The best striker and finisher in world football at the moment, Harry Kane has seen his stock rise exponentially in the last 3 years. No longer a one season wonder, the Tottenham frontman has banged in goal after goal to quickly establish himself as one of the hottest properties in football.
Kane's incredible goalscoring form can be seen from the fact that he even finished ahead of Ronaldo and Messi in the 2017 goalscoring charts. A truly incredible achievement.
Completely dedicated to the game, Kane revealed that he had to sacrifice a lot in order to compete with the likes of Ronaldo and Messi and leave the rest of the continent behind:
"They've been such good players over the last ten years or so, and dominated football and rightly so," Kane told ESPN of Messi and Ronaldo. "They'll go down as two of the best ever players.
"To even be up there and beat them is something I'm proud of. For me, it's about doing it every year. Not just beating them but winning as many trophies as they've won.
"I've sacrificed most of my time, especially with the schedule of games. You come in, you train, you play, you recover, you rest. That's a footballer's life. I don't complain. It's something I love doing."
Kane has been heavily linked with a move to Real Madrid and we might soon see the English striker make a big money move to the Bernabeu.
#2 Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain) - £135 million
The most expensive player in the world by a long way, Neymar has really hit the ground running after making a controversial move from Barcelona to PSG in the summer. The Brazilian superstar along with his teammates Cavani and Mbappe has blown away opposition defences and made PSG a real force to reckon with both domestically and in Europe.
Having secured the 3rd place in Ballon d'Or 2017 rankings, the Brazilian forward will be determined to do even better this season and finish on top ahead of the likes of Messi and Ronaldo.
Tipped to be a future Ballon d'Or winner by the likes of Pele and the legendary Ronaldo, Neymar will have a chance to impress and cement his legacy in the 2018 World Cup coming up in Russia.
The undoubted superstar of PSG's star-studded team, Neymar might well be the most valuable player in the world next year.
#1 Lionel Messi (Barcelona) - £162 million
The standout footballer of this generation along with Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, despite all the transfer fees, breakthrough stars and crazy market values still remains the most valuable player in the world.
Having arguably taken his game to new heights, the only thing keeping Messi away from being declared the greatest player of all time is the lack of a World Cup. Messi's importance to Barcelona and the club can be seen by Mascherano's incredible comments about the little magician:
"[Messi] is indispensable, but the rest of us are dispensable. – No, the club is bigger than any manager, than any player... except Leo. That's the reality, and you have to accept it."
The 30-year-old has been in ominous form this season and it seems like the Argentine is determined to break all kinds of records once again. With Russia 2018 looming large in the horizon, Messi will be determined to cap off an extraordinary career and cement his legacy as the greatest player of all time.
The players who just missed out on the top 10 were: Paulo Dybala (£76.5 million), Romelu Lukaku (£76 million) and Ousmane Dembele (£72 million)