Real Madrid welcome fierce rivals Barcelona to the Santiago Bernabeu on Saturday evening, in a clash labelled as the most expensive in football history.
Both teams are lucky to have a plethora of talented and world class players amongst their ranks and it is estimated that the players on show add up to almost £850m.
Real Madrid have in their side the current FIFA Ballon D’Or winner - Cristiano Ronaldo, who cost them a world-record fee of £80m back in 2009 from Manchester United and the Portuguese international has quickly established himself as a Real legend.
In the same summer, Real Madrid also spent £30m to bring in French international Karim Benzema to the capital from Lyon and he has since become the perfect foil for Ronaldo, as the both of them look to set to continue their formidable partnership on Saturday.
Ronaldo’s Ballon d’Or and world football rival Lionel Messi is yet to command a transfer fee after coming through Barcelona’s youth ranks, but it is estimated that the Argentine would command at the very least £100m if Barca were ever to sell him.
World Cup stars James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos were two of Real’s major signings this summer, with the combined price of the pair coming to almost £95m. Add the signing of ex-Levante goalkeeper Keylor Navas and their overall summer spending tops £100m.
Of course, the biggest and most publicised signing of the window was Barcelona’s purchase of Liverpool striker Luis Suarez for £75m. This was despite the fact of his four-month ban for biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini during this summer’s World Cup. The striker has now completed his ban and is likely to make his competitive debut on Saturday for the Catalonian side.
One of the bigger names missing the upcoming clash is Gareth Bale, who misses out through a buttock injury. The Welshman cost the club £87m back in 2013 and if he was included in the match day squad then the overall total would increase dramatically to nearly £930m.
In the same summer Madrid splashed out on Isco from Malaga and Asier Illarramendi from Real Socieded for almost £30m each but neither are have so far justified their hefty price tags.
Brazil star Neymar's transfer fee is somewhat of a mystery, but he is currently the third most expensive player in the Barcelona squad; his price tag has been quoted at somewhere between £50m and £80m. If Suarez, Neymar and Messi all start on Saturday, then the combined total of the three accounts for more than a quarter of both 16-man squads (£227m).
Both teams haven’t just bought their entire squads and have some players who have come through the ranks starting on Saturday. Real’s Iker Casillas and Daniel Carvajal are both products of their academy and Barcelona’s world- renowned ‘La Masia’ academy graduates - Sergio Busquets, Xavi and Andres Iniesta could all have an important role to play.Reuse content