The amount of money spent on international transfers in the window which closed on Monday dropped by more than 30 per cent, world football body FIFA said in a report on Friday
This is in comparison with the corresponding period last year, even though the drop has to be analysed and viewed in the light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
FIFA announced that a total of 3.92 billion dollars was spent by clubs worldwide between June 1 and Monday in the transfer window this year.
This is compared to the 5.8 billion dollars spent a year ago.
The number of transfers also fell from 9,087 last year to 7,424, down 18 per cent, the report said.
The number of those transfers involving a fee was 1,623 compared with 1,222, a decline of 25 per cent.
“Following the interruption of football for more than three months at the tail end of last season… spending on transfer fees in men’s professional football declined significantly,” said the report.
The COVID-19 pandemic brought football to a standstill worldwide between March and June.
Although it has restarted since then, most games have been played without fans or in front of very limited crowds, significantly affecting club revenues.
It also caused the transfer window to be extended until last Monday to allow for a late start to the 2020/2021 European club season.
European clubs were by far the biggest spenders with a total outlay of 3.78 billion dollars.
Of that, 1.25 billion dollars was spent by English clubs, followed by Italian teams (544 million dollars) and Spanish sides (487 million dollars).
However, the report said the women’s game seemed less affected and the number of international transfers rose from 385 to 522, up more than 35 per cent.
The amount spent on players nearly doubled, from 455,000 dollars to 822,000 dollars.