Updated: Wednesday, 29 January 2014 19:27 | By Agence France-Presse

International football transfers hit $3.7 bn in 2013

The value of the international player transfer market jumped by 41 percent to $3.7 billion (2.7bn euros) last year, driven by a four-percent rise in the volume of sales, FIFA said on Wednesday.


International football transfers hit $3.7 bn in 2013

Gareth Bale (left) moved to Real Madrid from Tottenham Hotspur last year for a reported world record fee of over 100 million euros - by Dani Pozo

Global football's governing body said that its Transfer Matching System handled a total of 12,309 cross-border deals involving male professional players, underlining the rosiness of the market.

The data was gathered in FIFA's Global Transfer Market report, which is now into its third edition.

"The report provides a unique insight into the patterns and trends that have developed in the international transfer market over the 2013 calendar year from a national, regional and global perspective," FIFA said.

"This includes compelling analysis of market activity and mobility patterns, transfer fee spending, player characteristics and the involvement of club intermediaries in player transfers."

With a total of 1,402 transfers, Brazil remained the most active market for both incoming and outgoing players.

Last year was marked by Real Madrid's September purchase of Wales international Gareth Bale from English club Tottenham for a reported world record fee of over 100 million euros.

That beat the previous record, also set by Real when they bought Cristiano Ronaldo from Manchester United for 94 million euros in 2009.

But despite Real's outlay for 24-year-old Bale, it was English clubs that spent the most on transfers in 2013, with their combined $913 million representing a quarter of the total.

Commissions to agents involved in transfers rose by 30 percent, although the actual number of deals involving such intermediaries dropped to 14 percent from 17 percent in 2012.

The data also showed that the average age of players transferred internationally was 25 years and 3 months.

FIFA's figures also showed that transfer activity for the first two weeks of this year was slacker than in 2013.

A total of 290 players were transferred between January 1 and 13, compared with 352 in the same period last year.

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