What if transfer fees decided who wins the World Cup?

5 March 2014

With Liverpool players on international duty on Wednesday night, we’re looking at whether the most expensive players in club football will be dominating this summer’s World Cup.

World Cup betting experts WorldCupOdds.com have come up with an infographic that shows what would happen if transfer fees decided who wins the World Cup. Other alternative methods of rankings the World Cup teams are also examined.

Can GBP 261.1m Buy the 2014 World Cup?World Cup Odds

Brazil Come Out On Top

Brazil have the most expensive first eleven based on most recent transfer fees of their most used players at the Confederations Cup. They come out on top at £261.1m, £55.2m more expensive than nearest rivals Portugal. On the infographic however it is Belgium rather than Portugal who fill the runners up spot at the World Cup despite Portugal’s side costing their clubs £46m more and this is because of the pre determined World Cup draw that would see Portugal meet Brazil in the semi final should they win their respective groups.

England aren’t expected to have a successful World Cup but they finish fourth according to these projections. They don’t have the fourth most expensive team though. Seven other sides can actually boast a more expensively assembled team than England. England only finish fourth here because of the World Cup draw.


The Limitations Of Transfer Fees

The big limitation from looking at transfer values is that some players are still at the clubs they began their career at. No side shows this better than Spain with five of their eleven most used players in qualifying having never played for any other team. Those players are Sergio Busquets, Andres Iniesta, Pedro, Xavi and Iker Casillas. Spain’s team only generated £104.9m in transfer fees but independent valuations of the same eleven players put their value nearer the £278.5m mark which would make them the most ‘valuable’ team in the world.

Lionel Messi is another Barcelona youth product who goes down as a free transfer. Argentina’s total transfer value is £141.7m but Lionel Messi alone has been independently valued at over £100m and if looking at the total team values (ignoring transfer fees) then Argentina add up to £265.1m which makes them the second most valuable team, ahead of third most valuable team Brazil who are independently valued at £257.3m.

There are also some very expensive players who didn’t make some of the teams’ most used elevens. The most expensive single player not to be included was Fernando Torres. He cost Chelsea £50m when signed from Liverpool in 2011 yet played just 16 minutes for Spain in qualifying.


Champions League Players

The Champions League is considered the best club competition so surely the best teams at the World Cup should have more players involved? Only Spain are able boast all of their eleven most used players in qualifying being involved in the Champions League this season. This is because their most used eleven was made up entirely of Barcelona and Real Madrid players.

Germany were next best with 10 players representing clubs that were involved in this season’s Champions League, only Lazio striker Miroslav Klose missed out. France had 9 players involved whilst England and Argentina are next best with 8 players involved in this season’s Champions League. The three England players who have missed out this season are Liverpool’s Steven Gerrard and Everton’s Phil Jagielka and Leighton Baines.


England Hoping To Avoid Penalties

Things could have been very different in the 1966 World Cup final had England not won the game in extra time. It turns out that Germany are the best World Cup team at taking penalties as they have won all 4 World Cup penalty shootouts they’ve been involved in. England are at the complete other end of the scale, they are the worst team at penalties at the World Cup having lost all 3 World Cup penalty shootouts they’ve faced.

Will the hosts Brazil win the 2014 World Cup? View the latest odds, stats and tips on the World Cup at WorldCupOdds.com.

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