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The 10 most expensive Argentine players of all time

Carlo Garganese
Enzo Fernandez, Chelsea, 2023/24
© IMAGO

Enzo Fernandez is the most expensive Argentine footballer of all time for his transfer to Chelsea from Benfica for €121 million.

Chelsea shocked the world of football during the 2022-23 season when new owner Todd Boehly broke the transfer record for overall spending in both the summer and winter windows. This included the British record signing of Fernandez from Benfica.

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The midfielder takes the title despite Lionel Messi being the greatest Argentine player of recent years. The former Barcelona and PSG star, who has now won the Ballon d’Or on eight occasions, has never moved for a transfer fee so does not appear anywhere on this list.

The second most expensive Argentine soccer player in history is Gonzalo Higuain, who moved to Juventus from Napoli in 2016 for €90m.

READ: What are the most expensive transfers of all time? The 50 highest fees in history

Juventus paid Higuain’s release clause in his contract, in the process infuriating Napoli fans given the rivalry between the two clubs.

The third most expensive Argentine player ever is Angel Di Maria, who moved to Man Utd from Real Madrid in 2014 for €75m.

Angel Di Maria never settled at Man Utd
© ProShots – Angel Di Maria never settled at Man Utd

Di Maria struggled to settle and left United just a year later for PSG for €63m, and this is the fourth biggest fee involving an Argentinian. The World Cup winner was a big success in Paris in his seven seasons there before joining Juventus on a free transfer in 2022.

Completing the top five is Lisandro Martinez, who moved to Man Utd from Ajax in 2022 for €57.4m. The centre-back has been a success so far and pushed Harry Maguire out of the starting XI.

In sixth place is Hernan Crespo, who joined Lazio from Parma during his Serie A’s heyday for €56.8m. He was a prolific scorer in his two seasons at Lazio before joining Inter for another big fee in 2002.

Next in the top 10 most expensive Argentine signings of all time is Cristian Romero, who has enjoyed a mixed time of things at Tottenham since his €50m move from Atalanta in 2021.

Argentine striker Mauro Icardi is eighth for his €50m move to PSG in 2020, which proved to be a flop.

Another Argentine centre-back is next on the list, with Nicolas Otamendi appearing courtesy of his €44.5m transfer to Man City in 2015.

Finally, Enzo Fernandez appears for a second time after his move to Benfica for €44.3m from River Plate in 2022. He lasted just six months there before his record transfer to Chelsea, but the majority of this fee is due to a sell-on included when River Plate sold him.

The 10 most expensive Argentine soccer players of all time

Player Clubs Fee Season
1. Enzo Fernandez Benfica to Chelsea €121m 2023
2. Gonzalo Higuain Napoli to Juventus €90m 2016
3. Angel Di Maria Real Madrid to Man Utd €75m 2014
4. Angel Di Maria Man Utd to PSG €62m 2015
5. Lisandro Martinez Ajax to Man Utd €57.4m 2022
6. Hernan Crespo Parma to Lazio €56.8m 2000
7. Cristian Romero Atalanta to Tottenham €50m 2021
= Mauro Icardi Inter to PSG €50m 2020
9. Nicolas Otamendi Benfica to Man City €44.5m 2015
10. Enzo Fernandez River Plate to Benfica €44.3m 2022

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