Belfast Telegraph

Open Britain claims Brexit vote added £105m to Premier League's transfer spend

The fall in sterling's value against the euro following Britain's vote to leave the European Union cost Premier League clubs an additional £105million in transfer fees this summer, according to research by Open Britain.

The pro-EU campaign group has analysed the transfers of the 43 players bought by Premier League clubs from European teams and worked out how much extra they had to pay because of sterling's decline since the June 2016 referendum.

Manchester City, Chelsea and Spurs were the worst hit, each shelling out an additional £10million on players than they would have done pre-referendum, as the value of a pound has fallen from 1.31 euros 14 months ago to 1.08 today.

In a statement, Open Britain's deputy director Francis Grove-White said: " Football fans will be concerned their clubs are having to fork out extra cash to bring in the best international talent and may even be failing to bring in new players because they have become simply unaffordable. It is a kick in the teeth for Premier League clubs and for fans.

"The total extra spending by clubs due to the plummeting pound after the Brexit vote would have been enough to pay for three Alex Oxlade-Chamberlains, five Marko Arnautovics, or nine Fernando Llorentes."

Grove-White added that British fans will also notice the effects of the Brexit vote when they travel abroad with their clubs or countries.

In a league table based on the exchange-rate costs, Manchester City lead the way having forked out an extra £22.45million, with Chelsea second on £22.15million and Spurs third at just under £11million.

Only Bournemouth and Burnley were not affected by the pound's slide, as they did not buy any players from European clubs.

The analysis also shows that clubs that left their business until late in the window were worst hit as the sterling's position against the euro diminished throughout August.

Another factor to consider is that many overseas players ask for at least some of their pay to be made in euros.

That said, most Premier League clubs also make money abroad, so will have enjoyed the flip-side of the pound's fall in value, too, and they also use various financial instruments to hedge against exchange-rate fluctuations, so the hit might not be as straightforward and painful as Open Britain suggests.

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