Bargain Hunt – Pardew vs Redknapp

Posted on 08 May 2012 by Graham Cobden


There have been many discussions about who is the buy(s) of the season, and in my opinion, the buys of the season have been at Newcastle Utd and Tottenham Hotspur respectively ………however it isn’t just this season where these two teams have bought and sold cleverly.


In terms of this season, many names at Newcastle spring to mind;

  1. Demba Ba – Free transfer
  2. Yohan Cabaye – 5 million
  3. Papa Demba Cisse –  10 million

But it isn’t just the buying of players that Newcastle do so well, it is spotting talented players who will maintain or improve their price so that they can sell for a profit in the future (with Andy Carroll being a prime example).



As you can see from the table above, between the 08/09 season and the end of 10/11 season, Newcastle made a profit from transfers of £51. 5 million allowing them to spend more during the 2011/2012 season while still keeping a total net profit over the last 4 seasons of £37.9 million. Newcastle have become a successful and sustainable club by buying smart and making profit from clever signings.


On the other hand, Tottenham Hotspur have a knack of buying players either who are out of contract or maybe considered to be on the decline and creating an amazing revival of fortunes for the particular players to boost their interest in the transfer market and subsequently make profit.



From the above spurs transfer table, names that come to mind include Brad Friedel (Free transfer), William Gallas (FT), Van der Vaart (£8 million). Tottenham (and Harry Redknapp) are very good at making a profit on players that they buy whilst getting those players to play to the best of their abaility, allowing Tottenham to remain competitive for domestic honours and allowing them to spend big when they need to, which allows them to keep competitive with the so called ‘top 4’.


Over the last 20 years though, who (if any) teams have made a profit from transfers?

As you can see, only 2 teams of the current premier league, Norwich and Blackburn, have made a profit from transfers with Arsenal being the best ‘top 6’ team. I would like to allow a mention also to David Moyes who has consistently year upon year kept Everton FC in the top half of the premier league with a limited budget which should be commended.

In the world in which we live in today, where ever increasing salaries mean that clubs can easily go into administration, It is becoming more and more important to become self sustaining and performance analysis can be a very important tool  in both scouting and talent identification, moving onward to the academies and  helping the talent to improve to first team level and finally to assess the probability of signings making money or lower priced signings making a large impact (‘the moneyball effect’).


Graham Cobden

The Chester Analyst

-Visit the blog for more articles/views –

5 Comments For This Post

  1. Josh Bryan Says:

    Some great collation of transfer stats here. Very enlightening!
    See you in the Members Lounge Graham!

  2. Mark Davies Says:

    Interesting stuff Graham -just goes to prove that a large expenditure does not guarantee success.
    Perhaps the ratio of annual income & expenditure against the final position, would create a key performance benchmark?

  3. GSC265 Says:

    Very true Mark but I am sure some manchester city supporters would disagree right now. That would be a logical next step in determining whether there is any correlation between either income or expenditure and ‘success’ (finishing higher up the table). I did a quick test by plotting transfer expenditure against current league position for this season and the R-squared value was 0.35 which is quite low and would not really support a theory of increased transfer expenditure leads to higher table standing. This could well be due to any number of factors but it may be interesting to look back over a number of seasons to obtain a greater sample.

  4. David Says:

    Very interesting blog Graham.

  5. Jarrad Griffiths Says:

    Very interesting blog. As a supporter of Swansea City, would be interesting to see the players purchased over the last few seasons and potential they could be re-sold for….Scott Sinclair bought for roughly £500K, Nathan Dyer for £400k and Danny Graham for a club record £3.5m all of whom, were linked to bigger clubs and international honours for England during the season. Not forgetting Michael Vorm, signed for free and attracting interest from Manchester United and Chelsea, Wayne Routledge another key player signed for £1.5m and Ashley Williams for £500k. Not bad business for a team who finished joint 10th in their first year in the Premiership!!

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Members Lounge LinkedIn