As the dust settles on the winter transfer window the success signings in 2014 is under scrutiny following the  Transfer Review by Prime Time Sport. Only 34% of the players purchased in the transfer window in 2014 have played more than half the number of minutes in the Premier League. Of the big money purchases in the summer Sanchez (Arsenal) and Lukaku (Everton) are repaying the investment with minutes on the pitch compared to the Premier League’s most expensive summer signing, Manchester United’s Di Maria who hasn’t featured in 50% of the time played.  

Chelsea continue to Drive the European Transfer System
Chelsea continue to reign supreme in the winter transfer market and have been crowned the “Kings of the Winter” in the  Transfer Review by Prime Time Sport. The English Premier League leaders have monopolized the winter window for the last six seasons and top both expenditure (216m) and sales (130m) across the top 5 leagues in Europe for that period. Roman Abramovich’s Chelsea led the way yet again in 2015 spending 35m and recouping 48m; topping the sales table across `Europe for the second year in a row. The purchase of Cuadrado (34. 6m) was the highest fee paid for a player across Europe this winter. Cuadrado is joined in the top ten most expensive signings of the winter window by Manchester City’s 32. 3m for Bony and Wolfsburg’s 32m for Schürrle. However, still some way behind Chelsea’s spend of  59m for Fernando Torres. Stability the key to success?
Whilst Chelsea continue the churn of players both in and out they actually boast the most stable team in the Premier League.

10 of their players have participated in 70% of the minutes played this season and captain John Terry is one of only 8 players that has played every minute in 2014/15. Hull City’s Ahmed Elmohamady is the only non defender to have played every minute this campaign. Manchester United and Tottenham only have 4 players in their current squads who have played over 70% of minutes this season. Investment continues to grow despite FFP
Despite the Financial Fair Play regulations, investment by European teams in the winter window grew by 34% to 385m to the highest amount in the last four years. The Premier League were the leaders in investment across Europe once again doubling that of second placed Bundesliga, whose 74m was a 224% increase of the previous season. A total of 137 players left the Premier League in January of which 87 (64%) were on loan. Chelsea and Manchester United offloaded the most number of players with 14 and 11 respectively with West Ham close behind on 10. Crystal Palace with 7 and Swansea with 4 were the most active in terms of player acquisition. Esteve Calzada, former FC Barcelona CMO and CEO of Prime Time Sport, said;

“The  Transfer Review by Prime Time Sport demonstrates that spending in the winter transfer window was only up 8% by English Premier League clubs due to the increasing value of the pound. “We can also see the Bundesliga coming to the fore with the highest net player investment  (60m) during the calendar year, overtaking the English Premier League for the first time. ”

Other key stats revealed in the review include:

– Despite Financial Fair Play restrictions, winter transfer investment in Europe has still grown 34% to €385m – the highest amount in the last 4 years. – Combining the summer and winter transfer windows, the total amount was €2. 6bn – up 7% and the highest ever. – Premier League lead once again in terms of investment in Europe, more than doubling that of Bundesliga (2nd), yet flat compared with the previous year. European growth was driven by Bundesliga (€74m; +224%), Serie A (€62m; +48%) and La Liga (€59m; +491%). – Combined season investment by Premier League clubs was the highest ever, in excess of €1bn (+35%). La Liga (2nd) reached €559m, followed by Serie A (€364m), Bundesliga (€348m) and Ligue 1 (€166m). – All top European leagues (except France) reached record figures of player sales, as most teams (including top clubs) need to sell players to afford new signings. As a result, Bundesliga takes over from Premier League with the highest net investment (€60m). La Liga almost matches Premier League net investment (€25m vs €30m respectively). – In total, 219 players were signed during the winter transfer window, down 15% compared with last year (38% in Italy). Again, a higher rate of player exits resulted in smaller squads. – The winter transfer window copes with the needs of the moment – but with a low success ratio. Only 9 out of the 39 winter signings from the 2013/14 season played more than 50% of their team’s games during the second half of the season. Only 13 of the players remained with their teams for the following campaign. – The Bundesliga’s Wolfsburg top the spending table after paying €32mio for Chelsea’s Andre Schürrle. The Blues are ranked second after reinvesting the income on from the Schürrle sale by purchasing Juan Cuadrado. 5 English teams feature in European top 10. – 5 high profile teams – Manchester United, Bayern Munich, FC Barcelona, PSG and Inter Milan – did not spend any money during the winter transfer window. The Catalans were banned by FIFA but are not usual suspects during January, having only signed players in 2 out of last 10 winter transfer windows). Real Madrid returned with the signings of Lucas Silva and Martin Odegaard. – Chelsea top the players’ income table for 2nd year in a row (€47. 8m in player sales), after reaching record high sales figures in the summer (€94m). Benfica follow with €42m, thanks to sales of Enzo Pérez and Bernardo Silva, accounting for €115m in total during the 2014/15 season. – Cuadrado’s signing by Chelsea was the most expensive of the winter transfer window (€35m), followed by Wilfried Bony (Manchester City) and Schürrle (Wolfsburg), both at €32m. All 3 signings join the top 10 most expensive winter signings ever, which is still lead by Fernando Torres (€59m). – Despite not investing during the winter transfer window, Manchester United (€193m), FC Barcelona (€157) and Liverpool (€149m) still top the season’s spending after investing in the summer. – EPL sides invested €162m during the winter transfer window, up 8% compared with last year, only thanks to the British pound value increase. Most investment was conducted during the summer (€1b – the highest amount ever). As a result, the total investment of the season is up 35% to €1. 2b – a record high in the EPL. – Only 16 out of 47 players (34%) signed last winter played more than half of  EPL minutes. Relegated sides Fulham and Cardiff signed 7 players – each with low participation. Just 14 (30%) continued to represent the same team in the following season. – Chelsea (€34. 6m) and Man City (€32. 3m) top the investment table following signings of Cuadrado and Bony respectively. Both signings are ranked in the top 10 highest in the history of the EPL. 13 teams (compared with 5 in La Liga) spent money in transfer fees. Arsenal’s Gabriel (€15m), Southampton’s Bertrand (€12. 8) and Leicester City’s Kramaric (€9) complete the top 5 most expensive signings. – Chelsea have been the driving force of winter transfer window activity in the last 6 years, monopolising both total expenditure (€216m) and sales (€130). This winter, the club spent €35m and sold for €48m. Up to 8 EPL teams cashed in from players sales. Swansea only reinvested 1/3 of the money collected from Bony’s sale to Man City. – Premier League sides sold players for €132m during the winter transfer window, and, as a result, investment during winter was down to €30m (compared with €35m last year). – A total of 135 players were released by Premier League sides in January, of which 87 (64%) were on loan. As an average, each team released 7 players. This is how apple has solved its patent disputes with nokia after agreeing to pay the finnish company a royalty for every iphone sold. – Crystal Palace were the most active team in terms of of signing players by bringing a total of 7 players, followed by Swansea with 4. With regards to player exits, Chelsea (14), Man United (11) and West Ham (10) conducted the highest number of loans. Liverpool and Newcastle were the only sides not to sign any new players. SUMMARY: ON GOING SEASON REVIEW

– Only 39% of players (57 out of 144) that joined the Premier League last summer have featured in more than half of the minutes played. West Ham, Arsenal, Newcastle and Southampton are the teams that have made the most use of new signings. At the other end of the scale are Man United, Tottenham and Burnley. – Alexis Sánchez and Romelu Lukaku have become the most profitable players from the top 10 most expensive list of last summer. James Rodríguez and Diego Costa also among the most profitable players. On the opposite side are Ander Herrera and Luke Shaw. Angel Di María is the most expensive player ever in the EPL having participated in only 50% of minutes played. – Cesc Fàbregas, Sánchez, Lukaku and Costa are the most profitable signings from top 10 most expensive list of last summer. Man United signings are among the least profitable signings. – For the 2nd year in a row, John Terry is one of the 8 outfield players that has featured in every minute of Premier League action so far. Ahmed Elmohamady is the only non-defender of the top 10. – Chelsea are the team with the most stable line-up: 10 of their players have participated in more than 70% of the minutes played. Man United and Tottenham, with only 4, are ranked highest in terms of player rotation. – Man United have fielded the most players so far (32). In contrast, Chelsea have only fielded 20 different players. For the 2nd year in a row, Man United (12) are still the side fielding the largest number of home-grown players. On the opposite side, Hull City, Burnley, Stoke and QPR are the Premier League teams that have not fielded any home-grown players. – Having used 14 home-grown players, Olympique Lyon are in first position ahead of FC Barcelona (13). Barcelona were previously top for the past 5 years. Man United complete the podium with 12. Real Madrid are out of the top 3, having gone from from 8 to 6 home-grown players used. Read the full Transfer Review by Prime Time Sport, go to.


Established in 1995,  is the leading provider of business events for the global football community. Bringing together key industry decision makers from the world of football,  provides a unique commercial environment where delegates can benefit from exclusive business opportunities, networking and bespoke educational content. Since its launch 18 years ago,  has hosted over 33 events across five continents. The  portfolio includes an annual Global Convention complimented by regionalised Forums.  

About Prime Time Sport

Prime Time Sport is a sports’ marketing firm founded and headed by Esteve Calzada, former Chief Commercial & Marketing Officer FC Barcelona and author of the book Show Me the Money. With offices based in London and Barcelona, the company offers integral services to football players, including representation, personal image rights marketing and management of media relations. Prime Time Sport also has strategic relationships with leading clubs around the world, helping them on rights commercial exploitation, players and other revenue generation projects. Furthermore, the company has extensive expertise in helping blue chip brands in their sponsorship activation projects.