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5 most expensive defenders of all time

Elvis Ume O
ANALYST
Feature
1.73K   //    Timeless

Van Dijk is the most expensive defender in history
Van Dijk is the most expensive defender in history

Football transfers are very much a mainstay in the modern game, as windows offer clubs the opportunity to strengthen their squads in areas of weakness.

An ever-increasing pool of marketing and TV money means that football teams are richer than ever, with exuberant amounts of money being spent on transfers.

Less than a decade ago, it was almost impossible to fathom a nine-figure player, but Paul Pogba's return to Manchester United in 2017 paved the way for that - there have been five since then, with Neymar's groundbreaking €222m transfer to PSG in the summer of 2017 being the benchmark.

The more glamorous nature of attackers means that they are usually more expensive than their counterparts in other positions, followed by midfielders and a cursory look at the most expensive transfers made in history illustrates this point.

However, this does not mean that defenders are not also highly priced and even though we are yet to get a nine-figure transfer for a defender, there are indications that more value is being placed on them. In this piece, we shall be taking a look at the five most expensive transfers of all time involving defenders.

#5 Kyle Walker - July 2017 (Tottenham - Manchester City) - €57m

Everton FC v Manchester City - Premier League
Everton FC v Manchester City - Premier League

It is no hidden secret that Pep Guardiola's first season as Manchester City boss ended in disaster, as the City players struggled to imbibe the Catalan tactician's complex tactical demands.

Full-backs have always been an important part of Guardiola's play, from Dani Alves and Jordi Alba at Barcelona to Joshua Kimmich and David Alaba at Bayern Munich, as they provide the width needed to keep opponents on the backfoot.

This entails a lot of pace and energy, but proved problematic in Guardiola's first season, as Pablo Zabaleta and Alexandr Kolarov both proved to be some way off the pace.

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Pep's first point of call was, therefore, getting new full-backs and he turned his attention to Kyle Walker of Tottenham.

The England international had distinguished himself as one of the premier right-backs in the Premier League and his performances convinced the City hierarchy to splash out a massive €57m for his signature.

Walker immediately went some way in repaying that sum, as he became a mainstay in the City side that decimated all before them en route their romp to the Premier League title in his debut season, with his pace down the right flank proving extremely beneficial.

So far, Kyle Walker has made 89 appearances in all competitions, scoring two goals and helping City to three major honors.

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