Pogba and Stones join world’s most expensive starting XI

Date published: Tuesday 9th August 2016 12:01

John Stones & Paul Pogba: Duo enter select XI

John Stones & Paul Pogba: Duo enter select XI

Paul Pogba and John Stones have earned selection into the world’s most expensive starting XI thanks to their mega-money moves to Manchester United and Manchester City, respectively.

GOALKEEPER

GIANLUIGI BUFFON (£32.6million)

Juventus paid a world-record fee for a goalkeeper to lure Buffon from Parma in 2001, with the Italian still number one with the Turin side and with Italy 15 years later.

DEFENDERS

Right-back: DANI ALVES (£27.5million)

The flying Brazilian right-back was the target of a stealthy swoop by Barcelona on Sevilla in 2008, and spent eight fruitful years at the Nou Camp before moving on to Juventus this summer.

Centre-back: DAVID LUIZ (£50million)

David Luiz

The Brazilian is the most expensive defender on the list after his move from Chelsea to Paris St Germain was announced in June 2014.

Centre-back: JOHN STONES (£47.5million)

Question marks may still remain regarding Stones’ ability to defend, but Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has placed a huge amount of faith in the England international.

Left-back: LUKE SHAW (£27million)

Shaw played for England at the 2014 World Cup aged just 18 before joining Manchester United.

MIDFIELDERS

Right midfield: ANGEL DI MARIA (£59.7million)

A statement signing in its day, Louis van Gaal felt he had acquired the playmaker Manchester United needed in 2014 after making a huge investment in the Real Madrid player. It proved far from successful though, as Di Maria was shuffled off to PSG a year later.

Centre midfield: PAUL POGBA (£89million)

Not a match-winner in the typical sense, but Manchester United believe Pogba will add the midfield quality they have lacked in recent seasons and turn the team into champions again, four years after he left for a tiny fee to join Juventus.

Left midfield: JAMES RODRIGUEZ (£63million)

Real Madrid threw Monaco an estimated 80 million euros (worth £63million at the time) for the Colombian after he dazzled at the 2014 World Cup.

FORWARDS

Right forward: CRISTIANO RONALDO (£80million)

Ronaldo developed from a tricky winger into a goal machine while at Manchester United, and Real Madrid shattered the transfer world record in 2009 to land the Portugal star after a long pursuit. He has since become Madrid’s all-time leading goalscorer.

Cristiano Ronaldo

Centre forward: GONZALO HIGUAIN (£76.5million)

Juventus paid the release clause in Higuain’s Napoli contract this summer to land the Argentinian who last season scored an all-time record 36 goals in a Serie A season.

Left forward: GARETH BALE (£85.3million)

The Welshman shone in the Premier League and Europe for Tottenham, and Real Madrid had to break the world transfer record to take him to the Bernabeu in 2013. Madrid have secured two Champions League trophies during his three seasons at the club.

TOTAL COST: £623.6million

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