Were United the biggest PL spender pre-Roman at Chelsea? Gross, net, wages?

Spoony

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If youre talking before PL then how about Liverpool? I'm pretty sure they were big spender too. For example: Ian Rush, John Barnes, Bruce Gobbelaar, and Peter Beardsley, those werent exactly cheap signings either.



Followed by years of under-investment. Like i've mentioned that after we broke transfer record for Andy Cole in January 1995, we had to wait for another 3 years before we spend big again (summer 1998) Also let's not forget that we broke British and world transfer records multiple times under The Glazers too. Di Maria was British record fee in 2014, Martial was world record fee for teenage player in 2015, Pogba was world record fee in 2016, and Maguire holds the record for the most expensive CB in the world, BUT we ARE NOT the biggest spender in the PL.

We were probably paying off the North Stand. These amazing Glazers have a different approach.
 

terraloo

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No, we had the likes of Becks, Scholesy, Giggsy, Keano who we didn’t pay for. The core of our squad came through our academy and then we’d add the occasional player if it was really necessary. It’s completely different to what the likes of City, Chelsea, Liverpool etc. Are doing in just trying to buy success - also we did and do generate our own revenue - not just funded by some sugar daddy.
I had a look at the numbers yesterday and its clear that Man Utd didn’t outspend post the launch of the PL .

There was indeed a purple patch when the academy delivered first team ready players (Keano ???? ) but you had a genius in charge (SAF ) and as has been seen since he departed getting all the ducks in a row to enable success isn’t just about big spend although it is a key part but to suggest that Man Utd aren’t throwing money at transfers is different from others who are trying to buy success is denial. All clubs buy players with the aim of progress, success or whatever

As for where the money comes to fund transfers you seem to suggest that other clubs don’t generate their own revenue whilst no other PL club is able to achieve the levels that Man Utd do but as I pointed out the other day in terms in terms of value even if you add up every £ put into Chelsea by RA including the purchase from Bates alongside-cash injection to CFC
holding company to support losses and based on Forbes valuation then RAs investment, should he sale CFC, would show a significant profit.
 

decorativeed

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Proven what?

Let me ask you basic question.

Are we the biggest spender in the premier league pre roman?
Look, I've linked to a massive thread full of figures and dates and comparisons several times in this thread already that shows that we weren't. But apparently reading isn't your strong point. Short answer: Liverpool were. EDIT: Actually - according Transfer League, it was by some distance, Newcastle United, who spent the best part of £200m between 1992/93

1992/93-2002/03 spending
EDIT: Newcastle United = £189.7m
Liverpool = £153.8m
United = £143.25m
Chelsea = £126.59m
Blackburn Rovers = £118.2m
Manchester City = £96m

EDIT: Newcastle spent £46m more than United, winning nothing but the First Division title back in 1992/93.

Liverpool spent £10m more than United and failed to win the league.

Even pre-Abramovic, Chelsea spent a considerable amount of money. United spent just £16.7m more than they did over an 11 year period.

Blackburn spent £25m less than United between 1992/93 - 2002/03 for one PL title and a relegation. Before they were relegated in 1999, they'd actually out-spent United.

It's amusing to see that we spent only 49% more than Manchester City did, during a period where they won absolutely nothing and were relegated twice, plying their trade in the third tier.
 
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Red_toad

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That's brilliant mate cheers. Some interesting reading, I'll be bookmarking that.

Confirms what I've been thinking. United weren't buying success in the 90's.
Why would anyone need to buy a heap of players, when you’ve got Giggs, Beckham, Scholes, Neville and Butt who cost nothing? Add to them Irwin , Ole and big Pete all half a mill, then Cantona 1.2 mill, Kanchelskis for 650k, so over half the team cost well under 5 million, bit pointless going out buy replacements for players who were good to go for numerous seasons. If we were playing catch up then sure we’d have spent more. But good transfer policy, scouting and a world class manager kept the spending down.
When we needed to splash out, Keane, Cole, Stam and Yorke all came for big fees at the time.
 

decorativeed

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No, we had the likes of Becks, Scholesy, Giggsy, Keano who we didn’t pay for. The core of our squad came through our academy and then we’d add the occasional player if it was really necessary. It’s completely different to what the likes of City, Chelsea, Liverpool etc. Are doing in just trying to buy success - also we did and do generate our own revenue - not just funded by some sugar daddy.
I had a look at the numbers yesterday and its clear that Man Utd didn’t outspend post the launch of the PL .

There was indeed a purple patch when the academy delivered first team ready players (Keano ???? ) but you had a genius in charge (SAF ) and as has been seen since he departed getting all the ducks in a row to enable success isn’t just about big spend although it is a key part but to suggest that Man Utd aren’t throwing money at transfers is different from others who are trying to buy success is denial. All clubs buy players with the aim of progress, success or whatever

As for where the money comes to fund transfers you seem to suggest that other clubs don’t generate their own revenue whilst no other PL club is able to achieve the levels that Man Utd do but as I pointed out the other day in terms in terms of value even if you add up every £ put into Chelsea by RA including the purchase from Bates alongside-cash injection to CFC
holding company to support losses and based on Forbes valuation then RAs investment, should he sale CFC, would show a significant profit.
We bought Roy Keane for a then British record of £3.75m. He was our only signing that year, mind, while Newcastle spent £5.7m, Liverpool spent £6.4m, City spent £7.2m, although all of those were blown out of the water by Blackburn's £13.7m spent on players.
 
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Noodle

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I have an accounting question that perhaps doesn't belong here but i'm unable to start a new discussion...

If a club buys a player for £30m, i presume they register said player as an asset on the balance sheet with the cost of the transfer ammortized over the contract length?

If they sold the same player in 5 years for £100m would they realise the whole difference between the £100m and what was left as the book value in the accounts as a profit for that year?

I.E Hazard at Chelsea, when they sold him for £100m would they show £100m extra revenue on that years accounts? Do clubs alter the players value on the books up or down according to expected current value or stick to the original ammortisation?
 

stevoc

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Why would anyone need to buy a heap of players, when you’ve got Giggs, Beckham, Scholes, Neville and Butt who cost nothing? Add to them Irwin , Ole and big Pete all half a mill, then Cantona 1.2 mill, Kanchelskis for 650k, so over half the team cost well under 5 million, bit pointless going out buy replacements for players who were good to go for numerous seasons. If we were playing catch up then sure we’d have spent more. But good transfer policy, scouting and a world class manager kept the spending down.
When we needed to splash out, Keane, Cole, Stam and Yorke all came for big fees at the time.
They wouldn't but it's harder to take the time to scout, find, develop and produce World Class players than it is to just buy them. The only point I'm trying to make here is to dispel this myth often trotted out on here that United bought their success in the 90's.

But good transfer policy, scouting and a world class manager kept the spending down.
Definitely that's exactly what United's success was built upon.
 

terraloo

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I have an accounting question that perhaps doesn't belong here but i'm unable to start a new discussion...

If a club buys a player for £30m, i presume they register said player as an asset on the balance sheet with the cost of the transfer ammortized over the contract length?

If they sold the same player in 5 years for £100m would they realise the whole difference between the £100m and what was left as the book value in the accounts as a profit for that year?

I.E Hazard at Chelsea, when they sold him for £100m would they show £100m extra revenue on that years accounts? Do clubs alter the players value on the books up or down according to expected current value or stick to the original ammortisation?
Buy a player for £100 million on a five year contract

WDV ( Amortised Value)

After 1 year £80 million value remains. £20 million shown as an expense in the accounts
After 2 year £60 million value remains Ditto
Signs a new five year deal at the end of year two

After 3 years £48 million value remains. £12 million shown as an expense in the accounts
After 4 years £36 million value remains . £12 million shown as an expense in the accounts

Player is sold for £100 million after 4 years profit of £64 million is shown

ok that’s simplistic and timings are never quite as easy as that but that’s roughly how it works

There are other mechanisms that come into play particularly something that is called impairment again another accounting twist

Clubs are required to carry out an annual impairment test. If the recoverable amount for an individual player is lower than the carrying amount on the balance sheet, the carrying amount must be adjusted to the recoverable amount and the adjustment charged to the profit and loss account as an impairment cost
 
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devilish

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United back in the 90s was a well oiled machine both financially and football wise. Our business people were visionaries in terms of making money out of football and they had enough sense not to interfere too much on the football side of things. Sir Alex revolutionised Manchester United's bottom up. Our academy was among the best in Europe, our scouts were everywhere and were among the first to spot unknown talent on the cheap (Schmeichel, Kanchelskis, Johnsen, Ole etc) and we were always on the lookout for new people at the club who brought new ideas in (Mclaren, Rene, Queroz etc)

Sir Alex had a simple policy. He would rely on academy players as much as possible (expecially regarding squad players) and was always on the look out for unknown talent. Thus the unnecessary expenses (ie squad players) was kept as low as possible. However if a top British & Irish young talent became available then he'll push the club to open the purses and buy it no matter what. That happened frequently with Pally, Keane, Ince, Rio and Rooney. If Sir Alex had his way then Shearer and Gazza would be in that list as well.

That gave the impression that we were the big spenders. However things were pretty different behind the scenes. First of all United lived on their means. Edwards would very rarely use his personal wealth to help the club and would take rather take then invest into it. Secondly we ran a very tight ship. The situation would occasionally go to the ridiculous. For example Sir Alex was very close of leaving the club because we refused to give him a payrise. That particular deadlock was broken when Graham sent Sir Alex his own contract with the latter using it as proof that the pay rise he was asking was justified. United would go on losing out on Batistuta because we refused matching his salary at FIORENTINA, we nearly lost Keane because we refused to raise his salary adequately and we would spent weeks dilly dallying on Stam's transfer up until the Dutch man decided to do away of his signing on fee bonus in a bid to facilitate the deal. Can you imagine Chelsea or Shitty doing that?

So no United during the glory days were not like Roman's Chelsea or current Shitty. The closest you'll have to that at the time were Berlusconi's AC Milan. However even that team had their own set of restrictions which doesn't put them at par with today's Chelsea/Shitty. First of all AC Milan relied on a superb academy which some might say was even better to ours (Baresi, Maldini, Tassotti, Albertini, Costacurta, Evani, Toldo etc). Secondly the three foreigners rule made it very difficult to buy the title. I think that the first 'Chelski' was actually Galatico Real.
 
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Fingeredmouse

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No, we had the likes of Becks, Scholesy, Giggsy, Keano who we didn’t pay for. The core of our squad came through our academy and then we’d add the occasional player if it was really necessary. It’s completely different to what the likes of City, Chelsea, Liverpool etc. Are doing in just trying to buy success - also we did and do generate our own revenue - not just funded by some sugar daddy.
He was a British transfer record but your general point still broadly stands.
 

decorativeed

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I didn't say others didn't but we did it plenty and still do.

Add Rooney, and Rio. What we did in 1989 also was unprecedented
It wasn't really. I'm sure throughout football history, there have been clubs that have a big investment in one season, while not spending great amounts in the season before or after.

In 1989/90, we spent £6.75m on Pallister, Wallace, Webb, Phelan and Ince. One example off the top of my head happened a whole decade earlier, when Manchester City spent £3.7m on a raft of new signings, including Steve Daley for a then-record £1.45m. Just for reference, at the start of 1979, the record transfer fee was £0.5m.

If you think how transfer fees progressed throughout that decade, it's a very similar amount. Only difference being, it set city up for relegation, whereas a couple of those signings were playing regularly for us as we won the first PL title.
 
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Tom Cato

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Off course we are.

"Not the highest net spend during our rival year" is playing on technicalities.

We bought well back in those days, we were also blessed with saf and the co92 as well as decent academy players like john oshea making sure we have squad backup for years.

But we are taking advantage of the premier league and our financial muscles.

Let's not kid ourselves.
Theres several posts in this thread showcasing graphs and sources for why your claim is wrong.

Yet you ignore all of those and say the opposite is true

Can I ask why? :)
 

Hammondo

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It would be a lot clearer if we included wages.

Also its always going to make whoever spent the most at the end, look more than they really did in relative terms.

The teams who spent money over time are always going to have spent less compared to those who spent big at once towards the end.
 

Mark_Barca

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This whole 'organic success' moral high ground from United fans is hilarious. That viewpoint is from fans who don't know their own clubs history.

People do realise English football existed before the Premier League was born yeah?

What difference is a club having one owner putting money into it from Man United twice only surviving from outside investment into the club in the 1900s and 1920s?

Martin Edwards was spending money in the 80s breaking transfer records with money the club didn't have, was again funded from outside investment. Had it not been for this United wouldn't have became as successful as they did in the 90s.

Also this whole 'our money' 'our success' attitude is crazy considering United became top dogs as a result of Premier League TV money and outside investment when it was rebranded and income coming from abroad etc. Exploiting glory hunters in Asia is apparently fair but a single person buying a club and using his own money to bring it success is a crime.

Had this been the other way about United fans would be saying the opposite and certainly wouldn't give a single care to having a single rich owner.
 

Revan

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See that's something I'm interested in seeing stats on. Because most United fans know we didn't offer the top wages before Keane's contract breaking the wage structure in 2001. But I'm wondering if we had the biggest wage bill as a result of having multiple players on £25k per week.
Under PLC we had a strict rule that we couldn’t go over 45% of revenue to pay the salaries. Fergie complained about it continuously, and praised Glazers/Gill for removing it.
 

Sky1981

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Look, I've linked to a massive thread full of figures and dates and comparisons several times in this thread already that shows that we weren't. But apparently reading isn't your strong point. Short answer: Liverpool were. EDIT: Actually - according Transfer League, it was by some distance, Newcastle United, who spent the best part of £200m between 1992/93

1992/93-2002/03 spending
EDIT: Newcastle United = £189.7m
Liverpool = £153.8m
United = £143.25m
Chelsea = £126.59m
Blackburn Rovers = £118.2m
Manchester City = £96m

EDIT: Newcastle spent £46m more than United, winning nothing but the First Division title back in 1992/93.

Liverpool spent £10m more than United and failed to win the league.

Even pre-Abramovic, Chelsea spent a considerable amount of money. United spent just £16.7m more than they did over an 11 year period.

Blackburn spent £25m less than United for one PL title and a relegation.

It's amusing to see that we spent only 49% more than Manchester City did, during a period where they won absolutely nothing and were relegated twice, plying their trade in the third tier.
There's a good 10 years in between, have you accounted for inflation?

Buying a player of Keane's calibre breakingthe english record are only 3.75m, which is a month of Messi's salary in current era.

Absolute dollar wise we don't spent much, but that doesnt mean we correctly only spend 3.75m, that 3.75m in the 1992 gets you the best England player.

For example Newcastle bought Shearer for 15M which is a very huge spending, but in the same decade period we bought Dwight Yorke for 12.5M, Karel Poborsky worth more than Roy Keane.

So the point is that you can't simply point at newcastle spending more than United at face value, because like it or hate it the gap between 1992 onwards is huge.

And the english record shows, we broke it for a paltry 3.75 for keane, Newcastle broke it 4x more in shearer in the span of a few years gap.

So it's not that simple of X spends more. In that 10 years there's extraordinary inflation occurs.
 

Revan

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We broke the British record a few times so definitely weren’t afraid to spend. But when you generate 100% of that money yourself I think you have to just say fair fecks. The issue people have with city, Chelsea, PSG etc (excluding non-football matters) is that they’re bankrolled by someone else. A better comparison would be net spend as a percentage of revenue wouldn’t it?
We also broke several British transfers under Glazers. Di Maria and Pogba were British records (I believe that Pogba was world record but might be wrong), Shaw and Martial were British records for teenagers, Lukaku was British record for a striker.

The main problem is that we spent too much money in duds under Glazers without Fergie, while with Fergie (be it under the old PLC or Glazers) we were great in the transfer market, and were able to find cheap diamonds which offset the occasional expensive bad transfers (like Veron).

Fergie was essentially the best manager and the best DoF in world football combined. Since then, we downgraded him to mediocre (Moyes, Ole) or past it managers (LVG, Mourinho) and awful DoF (Ed).
 

Sky1981

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Theres several posts in this thread showcasing graphs and sources for why your claim is wrong.

Yet you ignore all of those and say the opposite is true

Can I ask why? :)
Because you can't really compare buying Roy Keane for 3.75 to the 2002 version of spending. The weight of 1 dollar then and 10 years after is very difference.

It's like saying I earn 1000x more than my grandparents, because they earn 2 dollar back then and I earn 20000 dollar now. Doesn't mean i'm 1000x richer than them.
 

Revan

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Ok. if Glazer floats 100% of United, and we collectively buy 100% of United.

Who consists of the boards?
Who chooses the CEO?
Who decides whether the CEO is doing a good job or that he needs to be sacked?

If the club is owned by fans, the fans will ultimately decide the livelihood of the club. Even if they don't make silly daily decisions, their decisions decided who's the person making that decision.

You seems to think the board simply comes out of nowhere, they don't. They're there because they are Shareholders.

And god forbid the redcafe posters own 100% of United, we'd still be torn 50/50 on whether we should sack/keep Ole, and god forbid the CEO fires Ole, the other 50 would veto that decision.
Fans vote on a board which has a fixed contract to rule the club. The elections are hold every few years, where fans vote based on their shares. Fans won’t make any decisions except voting for the board (same as people don’t make any decisions on how to rule a country, except voting for the senate/government).
 

decorativeed

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There's a good 10 years in between, have you accounted for inflation?

Buying a player of Keane's calibre breakingthe english record are only 3.75m, which is a month of Messi's salary in current era.

Absolute dollar wise we don't spent much, but that doesnt mean we correctly only spend 3.75m, that 3.75m in the 1992 gets you the best England player.

For example Newcastle bought Shearer for 15M which is a very huge spending, but in the same decade period we bought Dwight Yorke for 12.5M, Karel Poborsky worth more than Roy Keane.

So the point is that you can't simply point at newcastle spending more than United at face value, because like it or hate it the gap between 1992 onwards is huge.

And the english record shows, we broke it for a paltry 3.75 for keane, Newcastle broke it 4x more in shearer in the span of a few years gap.

So it's not that simple of X spends more. In that 10 years there's extraordinary inflation occurs.
Why the feck would I need to factor in inflation when comparing figures from the exact same years? Are you deliberately being stupid now?

If you want to see the figures broken down season by season, I've posted a link to that which you clearly haven't bothered to look at.

On top of that you asked who were the biggest spenders in the Premier League prior to Abramovich buying Chelsea. I've given you two other clubs that spent more and proved that it wasn't United but apparently that's not good enough. You've got the answer you want and you're sticking to it regardless of facts. Post truth world and all that...
 

Sky1981

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Why the feck would I need to factor in inflation when comparing figures from the exact same years? Are you deliberately being stupid now?

If you want to see the figures broken down season by season, I've posted a link to that which you clearly haven't bothered to look at.

On top of that you asked who were the biggest spenders in the Premier League prior to Abramovich buying Chelsea. I've given you two other clubs that spent more and proved that it wasn't United but apparently that's not good enough. You've got the answer you want and you're sticking to it regardless of facts. Post truth world and all that...
Look. I've explained the reason why your graph only tells half the story.

If you're so made up that we're not the biggest spender than let's just agree to disagree.
 

adexkola

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Any numbers on wages?

We benefited from bringing youth through in terms of transfer fees, but they were all premier players that must have commanded competitive wages. I'd be surprised if we weren't the top spenders wage wise through the 90s and 2000s.
 

Tom Cato

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Because you can't really compare buying Roy Keane for 3.75 to the 2002 version of spending. The weight of 1 dollar then and 10 years after is very difference.

It's like saying I earn 1000x more than my grandparents, because they earn 2 dollar back then and I earn 20000 dollar now. Doesn't mean i'm 1000x richer than them.
The cumulative inflation of the pound from 19992 to 2002 is around 27.21%, so 2.44% avg. annually. So total you can cut the spending budget of around 13-14% to find a number adjusted for a decade worth of inflation.

A Roy Keane from 1992 to 2002 goes from £3.75m to £4.77m.

The thing I'm not counting here is annual football transfer inflation that follows its own separate path. For example from 2014 it has increased around 25% every single year until 2020. Much less so in the 90s and early 2002s, but more than the annual price inflation of the consumer market. And I can't be arsed to dig that up since I'm writing this from the comfort of the toilet and my legs are falling asleep.

But my point is: The difference is less than you think.
 

decorativeed

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Look. I've explained the reason why your graph only tells half the story.

If you're so made up that we're not the biggest spender than let's just agree to disagree.
And I've explained with facts and figures why you're talking out of your arse.

I've compared individual seasons spending at United and at other clubs. I've shown that when we spent that fee on Roy Keane, other clubs spent much more that very same season. Not 10 years later.
 

georgipep

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Not far enough
Theres several posts in this thread showcasing graphs and sources for why your claim is wrong.

Yet you ignore all of those and say the opposite is true

Can I ask why? :)
I think you are ignoring the facts. The graphs and sources show things like net spend and individual season spend.

Net spend: well, it's easier to have low (or negative) net spend when you have the star players to sell, no? How did we get those star players?
Individual seasons: yes, there have been teams spending more than us in separate seasons but how many teams could do it over a sustained period?

Yes, we only spent what we earned, that is a fact. But we did spend.
https://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/manchester-united/alletransfers/verein/985

Look at that page. Compare it to Arsenal, Blackburn, Newcastle, Leeds, Aston Villa and Liverpool. Tell me how we didn't spend.
 

georgipep

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The cumulative inflation of the pound from 19992 to 2002 is around 27.21%, so 2.44% avg. annually. So total you can cut the spending budget of around 13-14% to find a number adjusted for a decade worth of inflation.

A Roy Keane from 1992 to 2002 goes from £3.75m to £4.77m.

The thing I'm not counting here is annual football transfer inflation that follows its own separate path. For example from 2014 it has increased around 25% every single year until 2020. Much less so in the 90s and early 2002s, but more than the annual price inflation of the consumer market. And I can't be arsed to dig that up since I'm writing this from the comfort of the toilet and my legs are falling asleep.

But my point is: The difference is less than you think.
This is a pointless calculation. Nobody looks at currency inflation when discussing football money.
 

decorativeed

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I think you are ignoring the facts. The graphs and sources show things like net spend and individual season spend.

Net spend: well, it's easier to have low (or negative) net spend when you have the star players to sell, no? How did we get those star players?
Individual seasons: yes, there have been teams spending more than us in separate seasons but how many teams could do it over a sustained period?

Yes, we only spent what we earned, that is a fact. But we did spend.
https://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/manchester-united/alletransfers/verein/985

Look at that page. Compare it to Arsenal, Blackburn, Newcastle, Leeds, Aston Villa and Liverpool. Tell me how we didn't spend.
Well yeah. Plus gross spend and cumulative spending. Did you manage to miss that?

Nobody is claiming we didn't spend. We did not spend the most is what we are showing.

Comparing it to Liverpool and Newcastle as you suggest shows them spending more.
 

GueRed

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Any numbers on wages?

We benefited from bringing youth through in terms of transfer fees, but they were all premier players that must have commanded competitive wages. I'd be surprised if we weren't the top spenders wage wise through the 90s and 2000s.
Not sure but our wage ceiling in the until 1999 was around £28-30k.

Guessing we had alot of players in the squad earning that much..

Hence why the wage bill was quite high
 

Tom Cato

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This is a pointless calculation. Nobody looks at currency inflation when discussing football money.
Curreny inflation and transfer inflation both play a role in football transfers when you're comparing historical data. I gave you A, and was too lazy to give you B.

Or to use a dumbed down example: No one is buying Neymar in 2002 for £200m, not even if transfer values increased 25% between 1992 and 2002. Roy keane costs 34 million in 2002 if you pretend that inflation happened at the same rate between 1992 and 2002 as it did between 2014-2020.

Nobody looks at currency inflation when discussing transfers from 2014 to 2021. Beacuse the market has changed exponentially, with more money in football than was ever the case in the 90s and early 2000s. But if you're going to make an applicable comparison between decades, you can't just ignore 27% of the total sum, you adjust for both.
 

decorativeed

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They are all pointless calculations when you have figures for both United and their rival clubs during the exact same seasons. You see the values rise simultaneously at all clubs, and therefore can compare like for like.
 

georgipep

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Well yeah. Plus gross spend and cumulative spending. Did you manage to miss that?

Nobody is claiming we didn't spend. We did not spend the most is what we are showing.

Comparing it to Liverpool and Newcastle as you suggest shows them spending more.
Well, I've taken the 20 years from 85/86 to 04/05 and it shows the following:
Compared to Newcastle:
We've spent 7% more in the first 5 years, 56% more in the first 10 years, 33% less in the first 15 (as I wrote initially, there are periods when other clubs would outspent us) and we have spent 26% more in the overall 20 years.

Compared to Liverpool:
We've spent 38% less in the first 5, 5% less in the first 10 (here we've picked up the pace), 21% less in the first 15 and overall we've spent 18% more than them in all 20 years.

So, I'm not sure how you came up with the conclusion that they've spent more. I've used the period until Abramovich came to the UK for this analysis and have used transfermarkt data.
 

georgipep

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Curreny inflation and transfer inflation both play a role in football transfers when you're comparing historical data. I gave you A, and was too lazy to give you B.

Or to use a dumbed down example: No one is buying Neymar in 2002 for £200m, not even if transfer values increased 25% between 1992 and 2002. Roy keane costs 34 million in 2002 if you pretend that inflation happened at the same rate between 1992 and 2002 as it did between 2014-2020.

Nobody looks at currency inflation when discussing transfers from 2014 to 2021. Beacuse the market has changed exponentially, with more money in football than was ever the case in the 90s and early 2000s. But if you're going to make an applicable comparison between decades, you can't just ignore 27% of the total sum, you adjust for both.
Agree with that clarification. If we're talking about football spend before the second Galacticos, then currency inflation is significant enough to be considered. But not since then.
 

decorativeed

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Well, I've taken the 20 years from 85/86 to 04/05 and it shows the following:
Compared to Newcastle:
We've spent 7% more in the first 5 years, 56% more in the first 10 years, 33% less in the first 15 (as I wrote initially, there are periods when other clubs would outspent us) and we have spent 26% more in the overall 20 years.

Compared to Liverpool:
We've spent 38% less in the first 5, 5% less in the first 10 (here we've picked up the pace), 21% less in the first 15 and overall we've spent 18% more than them in all 20 years.

So, I'm not sure how you came up with the conclusion that they've spent more. I've used the period until Abramovich came to the UK for this analysis and have used transfermarkt data.
Because this thread is titled "Were United the biggest PL spenders Pre Roman at Chelsea". Not "were United the biggest spenders since 1985 until 2005". The era in question is 1992/93 to 2002/03. On top of that I dispute your figures, as they don't match what I have for Liverpool. Where are you getting them from?
 

stevoc

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And Solskjær has won it!
Under PLC we had a strict rule that we couldn’t go over 45% of revenue to pay the salaries. Fergie complained about it continuously, and praised Glazers/Gill for removing it.
I think we still aim to keep the wage bill under 50% of revenue these days though. Probably went above it during the mourinho era.
 

lysglimt

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If youre talking before PL then how about Liverpool? I'm pretty sure they were big spender too. For example: Ian Rush, John Barnes, Bruce Gobbelaar, and Peter Beardsley, those werent exactly cheap signings either.



Followed by years of under-investment. Like i've mentioned that after we broke transfer record for Andy Cole in January 1995, we had to wait for another 3 years before we spend big again (summer 1998) Also let's not forget that we broke British and world transfer records multiple times under The Glazers too. Di Maria was British record fee in 2014, Martial was world record fee for teenage player in 2015, Pogba was world record fee in 2016, and Maguire holds the record for the most expensive CB in the world, BUT we ARE NOT the biggest spender in the PL.
Rush was bought back cheaper than what they sold him for - same as us with Hughes, so I don't consider either of those two. Grobbelaar was cheap as they signed him from Vancouver 10 years earlier. Barnes cost £900.000 and Beardsley left Liverpool 1 year before Premier League started. The total cost of Liverpools first team squad in 1992/93 was about £12 million. Uniteds squad was almost £18 million, so Uniteds squad cost a lot more than all the other teams. Even Blackburns squad with Shearer was nowhere near Uniteds (about £10 million)
 

lysglimt

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Look, I've linked to a massive thread full of figures and dates and comparisons several times in this thread already that shows that we weren't. But apparently reading isn't your strong point. Short answer: Liverpool were. EDIT: Actually - according Transfer League, it was by some distance, Newcastle United, who spent the best part of £200m between 1992/93

1992/93-2002/03 spending
EDIT: Newcastle United = £189.7m
Liverpool = £153.8m
United = £143.25m
Chelsea = £126.59m
Blackburn Rovers = £118.2m
Manchester City = £96m

EDIT: Newcastle spent £46m more than United, winning nothing but the First Division title back in 1992/93.

Liverpool spent £10m more than United and failed to win the league.

Even pre-Abramovic, Chelsea spent a considerable amount of money. United spent just £16.7m more than they did over an 11 year period.

Blackburn spent £25m less than United between 1992/93 - 2002/03 for one PL title and a relegation. Before they were relegated in 1999, they'd actually out-spent United.

It's amusing to see that we spent only 49% more than Manchester City did, during a period where they won absolutely nothing and were relegated twice, plying their trade in the third tier.
I see your point - but as I pointed out earlier. The reason those numbers look so good for us - is that we spent madly for 4-5 seasons prior to the Premier League started so when the Premier League started we had:

Schmeichel, Irwin, Bruce, Pallister, Parker, Robson, Phelan, Webb, McClair, Hughes, Sharpe, Kanchelskis - we basically had an entire first team that would be the core of our first big team for the first 3-4 seasons of the Premier League. So even if your numbers are correct - they are misleading or flawed by the fact that you start looking at 1992/93
 

georgipep

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Because this thread is titled "Were United the biggest PL spenders Pre Roman at Chelsea". Not "were United the biggest spenders since 1985 until 2005". The era in question is 1992/93 to 2002/03. On top of that I dispute your figures, as they don't match what I have for Liverpool. Where are you getting them from?
I honestly don't want to be an asshole but did you read my post? I got it from transfermarkt.
 

decorativeed

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I see your point - but as I pointed out earlier. The reason those numbers look so good for us - is that we spent madly for 4-5 seasons prior to the Premier League started so when the Premier League started we had:

Schmeichel, Irwin, Bruce, Pallister, Parker, Robson, Phelan, Webb, McClair, Hughes, Sharpe, Kanchelskis - we basically had an entire first team that would be the core of our first big team for the first 3-4 seasons of the Premier League. So even if your numbers are correct - they are misleading or flawed by the fact that you start looking at 1992/93
My thread contains those 4-5 seasons. And they show we spent a considerable amount in some seasons, a lot less in others and - over that period as a whole - less than Liverpool.

And once again - as a reminder - this thread is asking about the PL period. So I'm focusing on that. We signed Bryan Robson in 1981, so I don't believe it is relevant to this thread.
 
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ThierryHenry14

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Thanks for the links mate, genuinely. Yeah it's best to take all these numbers you find on the internet with a pinch of salt but they are a rough guide at least.

Question though if you can't find any data from before 2003 what makes/made you think United were the biggest spenders on fees/wages before then?

For the 92 to present net spend table you'd have to take into account United have spent an absolute shitload (poorly) post Fergie which greatly skews that table. The only point I've been trying to make is that United didn't buy success in the 90's in the same way Chelsea or City have. According to any information available United weren't even close to being the biggest spenders in the 90's. We spent money sometimes big money, but usually only on one or two players and if you look at United's transfer strategy to buy a Roy Keane for a record fee in 1993, we didn't spend big again for another 2 years until Cole. Then after Cole in 1995 we didn't spend much until 1998 etc. as Martin Edwards was very frugal relative to United' wealth. And that pattern follows until 2001-2002 when Edwards stepped down as Chairman the wage structure was removed and we started spending £20-30m on the likes of Van Nistelrooy, Veron and Ferdinand. In that period we were finally spending like the richest club in the country, though it didn't last long as Abramovich arrived in 2003 and blew anything United could afford out of the water.
I started follow football and Arsenal in 1998. Man Utd had big transfer almost every summer at the time. Out of my head i remember Yorke, Stam, Barthez, Veron, Van Nistelrooy, Rio Ferdinard. If Man Utd's transfer net spend post Chelsea 2013 is head to head with Chelsea, it is a logical assumption before 2013 Man Utd is the biggest spender in transfer and wages when Chelsea and Man city didn't have external investment.

I am very happy with the external investment to Chelsea, Man City, and even Leicester. It makes the league a lot more competitive. Otherwise Man Utd will be just like Bayern in germany, winning the league every season.