Soccer clubs in England's Premier League smashed a combined spending record on transfers for a single season, surpassing 1 billion pounds for the first time Monday. Upon the January transfer period closing, meaning players could no longer be bought and sold, the clubs had spent 175 million pounds in the early 2016 window alone, according to the BBC.
During the season's other transfer period in the summer of 2015, clubs spent 870 million pounds, which brought the season total to about 1.045 billion pounds or about $1.5 billion. Spending this season broke a 965-million pound record set in 2014-15. That was a significant jump from the 2013-2014 season, which saw about 760 million pounds spent, via Quartz.
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Manchester City dished out the most cash this season, purchasing Kevin De Bruyne from German club Wolfsburg for 55 million pounds and Raheem Sterling from English side Liverpool for 49 million pounds. The biggest purchase from the January window was Stoke paying 18.3 million pounds for Giannellia Imbula from Portuguese club Porto.
Much of the spending in the mid-season January window came from struggling clubs, hoping to avoid a bottom-three finish and being relegated out of England's top division. Clubs in the bottom six positions in the league spent some 90 million pounds this transfer window, compared with 20 million pounds last season.
"The promise of the new broadcast deal for Premier League clubs from next season onwards and the threat of missing out through relegation is contributing to clubs investing in an attempt to stay in the league," said Dan Jones, partner in the sports business group at Deloitte, which tracks spending in the Premier League, via the Guardian.
The Premier League signed in February 2015 a record 5.14-billion pound ($7.9 billion), three-year television deal for 2016-2019 that valued each match at more than 10 million pounds. For a look at the purchases made by each club, check out the Guardian's wrap up here.