The best leagues to buy from: top 4 contender point of view

ThinkTank@Cafe

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Posters in Bruno transfer discussion often question credibility of his stats in the context of relatively weak Portuguese League. The question is: what league was the best to buy from in terms of quality, price, similarity to EPL and even climate (adaptability), or any other factor you see important, for a top 4 contender in the last 10 yrs ? Please back your choice with the names. Loans are not counted. My ranking is (out of my head):

1. English Premier League. Success: van Dijk, Sane, Kante, Robertson, Henderson, Walker (?). As it is an expensive league, there are an impressive list of flops too: Alexis, Drinkwater (?), Schneiderlin, Stones. Notwithstanding, still think EPL the best source of talent even at its usually high price tag. Liverpool built the core of its top team buying from EPL. They bought very well for a good price.
2. Championship (and lower). Success: Dele Alli, James Maddison, Joe Gomez. Flops: it’s so cheap that clubs don’t care. Beauty of Championship!
3. 4. La Liga: Aguero, David Silva, Laporte, Mata. Flops: Can’t recall, but surely, must be.
4. Bundesliga: De Bruyne, Firmino, Sane, Gundogan. Man City bought nice from both La Liga and Bundesliga.
5. Portuguese Superleague: Ruben Neves, Matic, Lindelof, Ederson, Ricardo Pereira. Not the biggest stars, not very cheap, but they usually don’t flop.
6. Ligue 1 France/Dutch league. A lot of good players and a lot of flops.
 
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André Dominguez

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If you bare in mind the portuguese teams budgets, it's really remarkable that we can actually export so many players all over the world.
 

Spiersey

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If you bare in mind the portuguese teams budgets, it's really remarkable that we can actually export so many players all over the world.
I find it remarkable the fees Portuguese sides manage to get for their players. There is no real basis for the huge fees given the standard of the league or how common players struggle after moving. Same applies to the Dutch league as well. Probably just linked to the strength of the national teams to an extent, Belgium sides have started to get big fees as well for their top players (coinciding with the NT massively improving).
 

ThinkTank@Cafe

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If you bare in mind the portuguese teams budgets, it's really remarkable that we can actually export so many players all over the world.
Yeah, it’s quite an achievement to have such a strong league in a country with only 10 million people and small market. Portugal have advantages too. Having a former colony which is football superpower helps a lot.
 

André Dominguez

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Yeah, it’s quite an achievement to have such a strong league in a country with only 10 million people and small market. Portugal have advantages too. Having a former colony which is football superpower helps a lot.
We also have a very large foreign legion mainly in France and Swiss. Raphael Guerreiro almost caused a "diplomatic" incident between FPF and FFF, and Griezmann was in the same path, but FFF lifted his suspension and called him up so he could become ineligible to play for PT :D
 

André Dominguez

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I find it remarkable the fees Portuguese sides manage to get for their players. There is no real basis for the huge fees given the standard of the league or how common players struggle after moving. Same applies to the Dutch league as well. Probably just linked to the strength of the national teams to an extent, Belgium sides have started to get big fees as well for their top players (coinciding with the NT massively improving).
Most of the players usually do well, the ones who struggle are players who join top clubs, but that applies to the majority of the players tbh.
 

Dan_F

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I find it remarkable the fees Portuguese sides manage to get for their players. There is no real basis for the huge fees given the standard of the league or how common players struggle after moving. Same applies to the Dutch league as well. Probably just linked to the strength of the national teams to an extent, Belgium sides have started to get big fees as well for their top players (coinciding with the NT massively improving).
I wouldn’t agree. It’s pretty rare that they get those massive fees and these are only really for the very best players. Given that the country produces good players, the best players should therefore be very good.

They also have very good scouting networks that can hoover up all the best talent from poorer countries, selling them on for a profit. Ie Brazilians going to Portugal as it’s a good stepping stone into Europe.
 

11101

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Feels like the most successful league is Eredivisie. Great technically but also quite a physical league compared to some.

Robben, Bergkamp, Van Persie, Van Nistelrooy, Van Dijk (i know technically came here via Scotland), Hasselbaink, Stam. Some world class players there.
 

ThinkTank@Cafe

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Feels like the most successful league is Eredivisie. Great technically but also quite a physical league compared to some.

Robben, Bergkamp, Van Persie, Van Nistelrooy, Van Dijk, Hasselbaink, Stam. Some world class players there.
Yes, Suarez also. He’s not a Dutch, but nationality doesn’t count. Eredivise was the best source of talent (better than EPL may be) in 2000s. In 2010s, with the decline of Dutch football - no.
 

red_de_pologne

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1. English Premier League. Success: van Dijk, Sane, Kante, Robertson, Henderson, Walker (?). As it is an expensive league, there are an impressive list of flops too: Alexis, Drinkwater (?), Schneiderlin, Stones. Notwithstanding, still think EPL the best source of talent even at its usually high price tag. Liverpool built the core of its top team buying from EPL. They bought very well for a good price.
2. Championship (and lower). Success: Dele Alli, James Maddison, Joe Gomez. Flops: it’s so cheap that clubs don’t care. Beauty of Championship!
3. 4. La Liga: Aguero, David Silva, Laporte, Mata. Flops: Can’t recall, but surely, must be.
4. Bundesliga: De Bruyne, Ndidi, Firmino, Sane, Gundogan. Man City bought nice from both La Liga and Bundesliga.
5. Portuguese Superleague: Ruben Neves, Matic, Lindelof, Ederson, Ricardo Pereira. Not the biggest stars, not very cheap, but they usually don’t flop.
6. Ligue 1 France/Dutch league. A lot of good players and a lot of flops.
Sounds like got tired writing the post and just given up at this point
 

Harry190

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The one purest form of talent in football is passing. So players. It truly is the rarest commodity in the sport since athleticism came to the foreground.

City bypasses this thanks to great workrate and off the ball movement. As does Liverpool. They don't have many great passers. David Silva and De Bruyne, that's it.
 

mark clatternburg

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Posters in Bruno transfer discussion often question credibility of his stats in the context of relatively weak Portuguese League. The question is: what league was the best to buy from in terms of quality, price, similarity to EPL and even climate (adaptability), or any other factor you see important, for a top 4 contender in the last 10 yrs ? Please back your choice with the names. Loans are not counted. My ranking is (out of my head):

1. English Premier League. Success: van Dijk, Sane, Kante, Robertson, Henderson, Walker (?). As it is an expensive league, there are an impressive list of flops too: Alexis, Drinkwater (?), Schneiderlin, Stones. Notwithstanding, still think EPL the best source of talent even at its usually high price tag. Liverpool built the core of its top team buying from EPL. They bought very well for a good price.
2. Championship (and lower). Success: Dele Alli, James Maddison, Joe Gomez. Flops: it’s so cheap that clubs don’t care. Beauty of Championship!
3. 4. La Liga: Aguero, David Silva, Laporte, Mata. Flops: Can’t recall, but surely, must be.
4. Bundesliga: De Bruyne, Ndidi, Firmino, Sane, Gundogan. Man City bought nice from both La Liga and Bundesliga.
5. Portuguese Superleague: Ruben Neves, Matic, Lindelof, Ederson, Ricardo Pereira. Not the biggest stars, not very cheap, but they usually don’t flop.
6. Ligue 1 France/Dutch league. A lot of good players and a lot of flops.
Ndidi came from Belgium.
 

AltiUn

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Were MK Dons in the Championship when they beat us? Thought they were lower down.
 

Gio

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The Scottish Premier League has done alright in this regard in recent years - Van Dijk, Robertson, Tierney, McGinn, Wanyama, Fraser - at fairly minimal outlay. It has proved fairly useful in adapting sexy foreigners to a more physical style of play before moving to the Premier League.
 

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Some great players came from the scottish league in the 60's, 70s, and 80s, but since then there hasn't been as many.
Bremner, Law, Buchan, Dalgleish, Mc Callister, and many others
 

JPRouve

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We also have a very large foreign legion mainly in France and Swiss. Raphael Guerreiro almost caused a "diplomatic" incident between FPF and FFF, and Griezmann was in the same path, but FFF lifted his suspension and called him up so he could become ineligible to play for PT :D
What? Neither of these players caused any issues between the FPF and the FFF. Griezmann's suspension was supposed to end on January 1st 2014 which is exactly what happened, same thing for Mavinga, Ben Yedder and M'Baye Niang.
 
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DWelbz19

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Belgian League imports: Ndidi, Courtois, Benteke, Lukaku, Fellaini, Mitrovic, Dendoncker, Kabasele, Kouyate, KDB (if he counts)
Flops: Izqueirdo, Danjuma, Wesley*, Trossard*

* = First seasons
Relatively cheap league too! Quality of the best teams and players are lower than Ajax and probably PSV, but the rest is comparable to the Dutch league in my opinion.
 

DWelbz19

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I find it remarkable the fees Portuguese sides manage to get for their players. There is no real basis for the huge fees given the standard of the league or how common players struggle after moving. Same applies to the Dutch league as well. Probably just linked to the strength of the national teams to an extent, Belgium sides have started to get big fees as well for their top players (coinciding with the NT massively improving).
I always assumed the Portuguese league players were so expensive because so many of the players had third party (and maybe more) investments and involvement in the initial deals. I remember the recent debacle with Falcao and Rojo for us.
 

ThinkTank@Cafe

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The Scottish Premier League has done alright in this regard in recent years - Van Dijk, Robertson, Tierney, McGinn, Wanyama, Fraser - at fairly minimal outlay. It has proved fairly useful in adapting sexy foreigners to a more physical style of play before moving to the Premier League.
good point. I think SPL should be on par with Championship in my ranking. Fully adapted (weather, language, country) foreign players at good prices.
 

André Dominguez

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What? Neither of these players caused any issues between the FPF and the FFF. Griezmann's suspension was susposed to end on January 1st 2014 which is exactly what happened, same thing for Mavinga, Ben Yedder and M'Baye Niang.
By your reaction, I guess the Portuguese press probably added a lot of salt to it, probably due to the sour that the French NT causes them everytime we meet (with Euro 2016 being the only exception :D )
 

André Dominguez

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The Scottish Premier League has done alright in this regard in recent years - Van Dijk, Robertson, Tierney, McGinn, Wanyama, Fraser - at fairly minimal outlay. It has proved fairly useful in adapting sexy foreigners to a more physical style of play before moving to the Premier League.
I actually watch a few games here and there of SPL, since I have a soft spot for Celtic. I do think scottish football is not that bad, but I do think most of their clubs are very conservative on the transfer market, but I can understand that with the lack of money sometimes is harder to risk on youth talent from smaller leagues.
 

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Update, best leagues to buy from in 2010-2020. Top 4 contender.

1. EPL.
2. Other British leagues (SPL&Championship - Scots gonna kill me here).
3. La Liga.
4. Bundesliga.
5. Portuguese.
6. France, Ligue 1.
7. Dutch, Eredivise.
8. Belgium League.
9. Serie A.
10.?
 

RedNed77

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Posters in Bruno transfer discussion often question credibility of his stats in the context of relatively weak Portuguese League. The question is: what league was the best to buy from in terms of quality, price, similarity to EPL and even climate (adaptability), or any other factor you see important, for a top 4 contender in the last 10 yrs ? Please back your choice with the names. Loans are not counted. My ranking is (out of my head):

1. English Premier League. Success: van Dijk, Sane, Kante, Robertson, Henderson, Walker (?). As it is an expensive league, there are an impressive list of flops too: Alexis, Drinkwater (?), Schneiderlin, Stones. Notwithstanding, still think EPL the best source of talent even at its usually high price tag. Liverpool built the core of its top team buying from EPL. They bought very well for a good price.
2. Championship (and lower). Success: Dele Alli, James Maddison, Joe Gomez. Flops: it’s so cheap that clubs don’t care. Beauty of Championship!
3. 4. La Liga: Aguero, David Silva, Laporte, Mata. Flops: Can’t recall, but surely, must be.
4. Bundesliga: De Bruyne, Firmino, Sane, Gundogan. Man City bought nice from both La Liga and Bundesliga.
5. Portuguese Superleague: Ruben Neves, Matic, Lindelof, Ederson, Ricardo Pereira. Not the biggest stars, not very cheap, but they usually don’t flop.
6. Ligue 1 France/Dutch league. A lot of good players and a lot of flops.
Bebe, Anderson, Maniche, Deco, Ricardo Quaresma, Orlando Sá, Hugo Viana, Paulo Alves, Helder Postiga, Jorge Cadete, Ariza Makukula, Ricardo Vaz Tê , João Carlos Teixeira, Christian Atsu...
 

JPRouve

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Update, best leagues to buy from in 2010-2020. Top 4 contender.

1. EPL.
2. Other British leagues (SPL&Championship - Scots gonna kill me here).
3. La Liga.
4. Bundesliga.
5. Portuguese.
6. France, Ligue 1.
7. Dutch, Eredivise.
8. Belgium League.
9. Serie A.
10.?
How the portuguese league is above Ligue 1 in that ranking? Hazard, Martial, Giroud, Lacazette, Koscielny, Fabinho, Lloris, Bernardo Silva, Moutinho and many others. In your Portuguese list you have Ruben Neves who was signed by a championship team not a top 4 contender.
 

Fox_Chrys

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Portugal seems another good one.

EPL is the worst unless its fringe players, as EPL clubs all have enough money to charge a premium for 1st team players.
 

Botim

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It's a weird question when you try to answer it.

What was the best transfer? Kante to Leicester or Kante to Chelsea? Probably the first one, but top 4 sides often prefer to poach lowers side's proven players. Sure they cost more that way, but they avoid most of the risk. Now, who gets credit in your list for this transfer, the EPL or Ligue1?

It's all very abstract, when it simply comes down to: a player with the right qualities will succeed here, no matter where you get him from.
You can easily name a top player that came here in the last decade from any of the bigger European leagues: Aguero (La Liga), De Bruyne (Bundesliga), Salah (Serie A), Hazard (Ligue1), Van Dijk (SPL), Suarez (Eredivisie), Courtois (Belgian Pro League), etc
 

elmo

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Posters in Bruno transfer discussion often question credibility of his stats in the context of relatively weak Portuguese League. The question is: what league was the best to buy from in terms of quality, price, similarity to EPL and even climate (adaptability), or any other factor you see important, for a top 4 contender in the last 10 yrs ? Please back your choice with the names. Loans are not counted. My ranking is (out of my head):

1. English Premier League. Success: van Dijk, Sane, Kante, Robertson, Henderson, Walker (?). As it is an expensive league, there are an impressive list of flops too: Alexis, Drinkwater (?), Schneiderlin, Stones. Notwithstanding, still think EPL the best source of talent even at its usually high price tag. Liverpool built the core of its top team buying from EPL. They bought very well for a good price.
2. Championship (and lower). Success: Dele Alli, James Maddison, Joe Gomez. Flops: it’s so cheap that clubs don’t care. Beauty of Championship!
3. 4. La Liga: Aguero, David Silva, Laporte, Mata. Flops: Can’t recall, but surely, must be.
4. Bundesliga: De Bruyne, Firmino, Sane, Gundogan. Man City bought nice from both La Liga and Bundesliga.
5. Portuguese Superleague: Ruben Neves, Matic, Lindelof, Ederson, Ricardo Pereira. Not the biggest stars, not very cheap, but they usually don’t flop.
6. Ligue 1 France/Dutch league. A lot of good players and a lot of flops.
Reyes (Arguably), Morata, Morientes, del Horno. Pretty sure you can find a lot more from Rafa's time with Liverpool and Newcastle

*Past decade, i can't read.
 
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André Dominguez

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Mangala, Slimani, Markovic, Adrien Silva, Imbula, Javi Garcia, Rojo, Helder Costa, Raul Meireles...
Imbula should count as Ligue 1, because he was barely used at Porto and just stayed there half-season.

Meireles and Javi Garcia are not bad players though. Meireles was actually a decent player that tried hard, despite his limitations on the physical side (he wasn't particularly strong, agile or fast)

Javi Garcia was actually a very solid holding midfielder. Very limited technically, hence the reason he played a fair number of games as center back at Benfica, but defensively he was an absolute beast of a destroyer. For an EPL top team he would probably fall short, but a good solution to shut up shop in the last 10-15 minutes.