England have the most valuable squad at the World Cup, a study of each team and player competing in Qatar has found, with Jude Bellingham the tournament’s most valuable star.
According to the CIES Football Observatory, England’s 26 players in Qatar are worth a combined £1.305billion (€1.499bn), with the Borussia Dortmund midfielder making up £176.9million of that total all by himself.
Behind Southgate’s squad are predictably Brazil, France, Spain and Portugal, who are the only other sides valued at more than £1bn at the tournament, with Germany’s squad worth only £892.9m – despite Jamal Musiala’s £132.2m valuation.
Europe unsurprisingly dominates the upper half of the list with 11 of the 16 most expensive squads, with Argentina the most expensive side from South America (£654.9m), USA top for North America (£319.6m) and Senegal leading the way for Africa (£275.8m).
At the opposite end of the standings, Costa Rica are the side valued at the lowest amount in the competition at just £20.16m – with around 20 per cent of their squad worth made up by former Real Madrid goalkeeper Keylor Navas – and hosts Qatar second from bottom at £25.42m.
The overall value of the 32 teams in the competitions is estimated to be around £13.13bn by CIES.
England have the most valuable squad at the World Cup, priced at £1.305billion by CIES
Jude Bellingham is valued at £176.9m closely followed by Brazil’s Vinicius Junior (£176.1m)
Whilst the value of a team does not necessarily correspond to how they will fare in a tournament, England fans will nonetheless be heartened to find their nation at the top of the pile.
With a litany of stars at his disposal, such as Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling, Declan Rice, Bukayo Saka and Phil Foden, Southgate is sure to field an XI of near incomprehensible value, regardless of which 11 players he selects.
Borussia Dortmund starlet Bellingham alone is worth more than the entire squads from 12 nations that will be competing at the tournament, which is testament to his consistently stunning performances despite his young age (19).
Brazil are ranked second, with Kylian Mbappe’s France the third most valuable team
Close behind England are Brazil, who come in at £1.275bn due to nearly all 26 members of their squad turning out for major European heavyweights.
The most expensive Brazilian at the tournament will be Real Madrid star forward Vinicius Jnr, who is valued at only marginally less than Bellingham (£176.1m), but still the equivalent to the bottom five teams combined (Iran, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Qatar, Costa Rica).
Due to the financial disparity across the six football governing bodies from across the world, it will come as no shock to find European sides at the top end of the list.
Pedri (centre) is Spain’s most valuable player (£138.3m) with La Roja coming in fourth overall
CIES’ most valuable World Cup Squads and players
1. England – £1.305bn, Jude Bellingham – £176.9m
2. Brazil – £1.275bn, Vinicius Jnr – £176.1m
3. France – £1.171bn, Kylian Mbappe – £161.9m
4. Spain – £1.072bn, Pedri £138.3m
5. Portugal – £1.011bn, Ruben Dias £103.3m
6. Germany – £892.9m, Jamal Musiala £132.2m
7. Holland – £661.7m, Frenkie de Jong – £96.28m
8. Argentina – £654.9m, Lautaro Martinez – £86.68m
9. Uruguay – £526.6m, Federico Valverde – £107.6m
10. Belgium – £491.9m, Thibaut Courtois – £57.76m
11. Croatia – £418.6m, Josko Gvardiol – £96.33m
12. Serbia – £353.8m, Dusan Vlahovic – £84.94m
13. Denmark – £352.8m, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg – £60.43m
14. Switzerland – £320.4m, Gregor Kobel – £44.66m
15. USA – £319.6m, Christian Pulisic – £45,53m
=17. Senegal – £275.8m, Sadio Mane – £63.05m
=17. Morocco – £275.8m, Achraf Hakimi – £70.07m
18. Poland – £274.03, Robert Lewandowski – £51.66m
19. Ghana – £181.3m, Thomas Partey – £21.89m
20. Japan – £179.5m, Ritsu Doan – £25.38m
21. Mexico – £170.7m, Edson Alvarez – £23.63m
22. Canada – £169.0m, Alphonso Davies – £59.52m
23. Wales – £158.5m, Brennan Johnson – £22.77m
24. Cameroon – £155m, Andre-Franck Zambo – £28.9m
25. Ecuador – £142.7m, Piero Hincapie – £34.15m
26. Korea Republic – £139.3m, Son Heung-min – £40.3m
27. Tunisia – £49.96m, Montassar Talbi – £10.52m
28. Iran – £46.46m, Mehdi Taremi – £17.54m
29. Saudi Arabia – £42.96m, Saud Abdulhamid – £4.383m
30. Australia – £38.31m, Ajdin Hrustic – £6.136m
31. Qatar – £25.42m, Almoez Ali – £3.507m
32. Costa Rica – £20.16m, Keylor Navas – £3.507m
The continent is home to most recognisable clubs in the world, with the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid, PSG and Manchester United harnessing their global fanbase to great effect in recent years.
As a result, many of the sides at the bottom end of CIES’ ranking have a large portion of their overall value made up by a single player.
For example Porto striker Mehdi Taremi (£17.54m) is responsible for more than a third of his country’s £46.46m valuation, and Senegalese star man Sadio Mane (63.05m) comprising almost a quarter of the reigning AFCON champions’ squad value (£275.8m).
Porto centre-forward Mehdi Taremi makes up more than a third of Iran’s £46.46m valuation
The total price of Belgium’s squad is particularly surprising, given the wealth of talent the Red Devils can boast.
At only £491.9m, Roberto Martinez’s side rank only 10th on the list, but can call upon the likes of Kevin de Bruyne, Romelu Lukaku, Eden Hazard, Dries Mertens, Youri Tielemens and Thomes Meunier.
Interestingly CIES believes that Belgium’s most valuable asset is Real Madrid goalkeeper and Yashin Trophy holder Thibaut Courtois, who they have priced at £57.76m.
Belgium have been ranked as only the 10th most valuable side despite their star-studded ranks
Yashin Trophy holder Thibaut Courtois was his country’s most valuable asset at £57.76m
South American power houses Argentina and Brazil make up £1.93bn of the continent’s 2.599bn valuation, but for the first time for at least the last two tournaments, Lionel Messi is not the highest-valued player from CONMEBOL.
Behind Vinicius Jnr comes his Los Blancos team-mate Federico Valverde (£107.6m) as Uruguay’s most valuable player, although the likes of Neymar and Rodrygo would likely come ahead of the midfielder for Brazil, too.
Argentina’s most expensive player is Inter striker Lautaro Martinez, who shot to stardom as his side became the first side to snatch the Serie A title from Juventus since their unprecedented nine titles in a row back in 2020-21.
PSG star Lionel Messi will not be Argentina’s most valuable player at the 2022 Qatar World Cup
Lautaro Martinez (£86.68m) and Federico Valverde (£107.6m) are their nation’s most expensive assets
And despite the quality of Son Heung-min – who has established himself as one of the preeminent forward players in world football – Korea Republic have been valued at only £139.6m, with the Tottenham forward making up 28.9% of that (£40.3m).
Son Heung-min will wear a face mask in Qatar
Korea Republic can also call upon the likes of Wolves forward Hwang Hee-chan, Napoli centre-half Kim Min-jae, and Freiburg’s Jeong Woo-yeong, but have been ranked as only the 26th most valuable side in the tournament.
Qatar come in way down in 31st place despite hosting the tournament, but that will not surprise many football fans, given the lack of footballing heritage in the country.
Senegal lead the way for the five African sides to qualify for the tournament, with Tunisia bringing up the rear at £49.96m in 27th place – separated by £225.84m as a result of the African champions’ quality-filled roster.
Asian sides at the tournament make up only £433.6m of the overall £13.13bn valuation of all 832 players at the competition, although 15 per cent of that total is made up by Ritsu Doan and Son alone.
Almoez Ali is the most valuable player for Qatar at £3.507m with his side the second-least valuable team
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