According to statistics released by CIES Football Observatory, Real Madrid ranks 25th among European clubs with the highest net spend since the summer of 2012.
Real Madrid have spent less money on transfers in the last decade than 24 other European clubs including Crystal Palace and Brighton
Recently released statistics rank Real Madrid 25th on the list of highest-spending clubs since 2012.
The net spend data is achieved by calculating all the transfer fees paid by each club for the last 10 years and minus from it the amount received from player sales including potential add-ons to determine how much the clubs have really parted with since 2012.
The top 20 was released by CIES and it was dominated by English clubs, 14 of them made the list which is understandable because English teams have undeniable spending power.
Paris Saint Germain, Barcelona, Juventus, AC Milan, Inter Milan and Bayern Munich were the non-English teams in the top 20 in that order.
This is not particularly alarming except for the fact that the most successful European team and perhaps the biggest club in the World, Real Madrid is missing.
In fact, not only are Los Blancos not in the top 20, you would have to go further down to number 25 to find them with a net spend of €179 million.
But how could this be? A club that was built solely on outspending everyone and buying the best players available at whatever time. h
How has Real Madrid transitioned from 'Galacticos' to having a lower net spend than Wolves, Brighton, Newcastle, Crystal Palace and other mid to lower table Premier League teams?
To fully grasp what this means, one has to understand that Everton's net spend in the same period is €429 million, Aston Villa's currently stands at £424 million and West Ham is at €374 million, all more than double of Real Madrid's €179 million net spend.
And yet Real Madrid's standards have not dropped one bit over the decade.
In fact, Real Madrid has won four UEFA Champions trophies while the top 20 highest spending teams have six between them with Chelsea and Bayern Munich accounting for two each while Barcelona and Liverpool won it once each in the last decade.
Seven of the teams in the top 20 have never even played in the Champions League despite having a significantly higher net spend than Real Madrid since 2012.
So how did Florentino Perez manage to achieve this incredible feat? Did Real Madrid become frugal all of a sudden? The short answer is no.
Perez has switched his transfer policy from the "Galactico" style of going after expensive and established top players to now targeting expensive and less established young players like Vinicius, Rodrygo, Camavinga and the likes.
Those younger players still cost a lot of money as Real Madrid has spent just over a billion Euros on signings since the summer of 2012. The big difference is these younger players have a much higher resale value than the "Galacticos" which is how Real Madrid has been able to recoup their money.
Real Madrid has made over €800 million from player sales in the decade in focus, made even more impressive by the fact that most of these players were surplus to requirements anyway.
This past summer they got €35 million for Martin Odegaard, a player who they had signed for next to nothing as a 15-year old and had no real use for by the time Arsenal came asking for his services.
In the summer of 2021, Real Madrid sold two academy grown fullbacks who were not first-team regulars, Achraf Hakimi and Sergio Reguillon for a combined €73 million to Inter Milan and Tottenham respectively.
In the summer before that, Real sold Mateo Kovacic to Chelsea for €45 million, Marcos Llorente to Atletico for €30 million, Theo Hernandez to AC Milan for €21.50 million, Raul De Tomas to Benfica for €20 million and many others.
Let's not forget Perez sold Alvaro Morata twice to Juventus and Chelsea for a combined €86 million fee which just sums up the genius of this man and how he has been able to keep Real Madrid's net spend so low.
Madrid has mastered the art of getting good money for players they do not need, it would be a good idea for the top 20 clubs to adopt this transfer policy.