Stat of the Week statistics

Stat of the Week: Foreign players in top five leagues

8:59 PMGoalChatter

Art and words: Aleks V | Stats: Aidan Reagh 

When it comes to transfers, the world's top football leagues duke it out, vying for the best - and often, most expensive - players in the world. Many of these players are foreigners, and leagues often have restrictions on how many can be signed or fielded. In nations that are members of the European Union, "foreign" usually denotes non-EU players. However, the stats above reflect all players who do not hold citizenship of the countries they play in.

England's Premier League has been the most reliant on foreigners over the past five years, with more than 60% in the mix. On the opposite end is La Liga, with 40%, although Spain's top league saw the second-biggest increase in the number of foreign players (10.7%). Serie A witnessed the largest growth (13.5%), which may be evidence of big money pouring in, especially at Juventus. La Vecchia Signora has made headlines with signings such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Gonzalo HiguaĆ­n, and Paulo Dybala.

Of the top five leagues, only Ligue 1 saw a decrease (-11.6%) in the number of foreign players. Will a greater reliance on homegrown youth give the French national team more talent the likes of Kylian MbappƩ and cement its presence in the upper echelons of football?

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