The Spanish side strictly follow their club’s policy of only employing players from the Basque region, meaning it typically costs a lot of money to pry one of their talents from the club.
As a result, Chelsea were forced to break the world record fee for a goalkeeper in order to land Kepa in 2018 after losing Thibaut Courtois to Real Madrid in the same summer transfer window. Kepa proved to be a huge flop at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea were also linked with another goalkeeper during the summer they signed Kepa – Brazilian shot-stopper Alisson. Instead, the Brazilian joined Liverpool from Roma and was briefly the most expensive goalkeeper of all time before Kepa’s move. Alisson is now the second on this list, having cost Liverpool €62.5m. His transfer was a huge success.
Andre Onana’s transfer to Manchester United in the summer of 2023 sees him rank third on the list, having set the Red Devils back €55m – after Inter had signed him for nothing from Ajax just the season prior!
The fourth-most expensive goalkeeper of all time is Gianluigi Buffon thanks to his move from Parma to Juventus way back in 2001. This stood as the world’s record transfer fee for a goalkeeper until 2018. Buffon is remembered as arguably the greatest goalkeeper of all time.
Manuel Neuer’s move from boyhood club Schalke to Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich in 2011 cost the Bavarians €30m, which is the eighth-largest fee for a goalkeeper in history. English duo Jordan Pickford and Aaron Ramsdale are ninth and tenth on the list. Pickford’s move from Sunderland to Everton in 2017 cost the Toffees €28.5m, while Arsenal paid €28m to sign Ramsdale from Sheffield United in 2021.
The 10 most expensive goalkeepers of all time
|Athletic Club to Chelsea
|Roma to Liverpool
|Inter Milan to Man Utd
|Parma to Juventus
|Benfica to Manchester City
|Barcelona to Valencia
|Chelsea to Real Madrid
|Schalke to Bayern Munich
|Sunderland to Everton
|Sheffield United to Arsenal