The First Million–Pound Footballer

Brian Clough claimed in his autobiography that the fee was actually £999,999 – because he didn't want the price tag to go to the player's head. Trevor Francis described this as a "tongue–in–cheek" remark by Clough.

Forest would actually have had to pay considerably more than a million pounds, as the Football League would have taken 15% commission.

Prior to this, the British transfer record was a mere £500,000 – half a million – paid by West Bromwich Albion to Middlesbrough for David Mills, also in 1979.

If setting this question in a quiz, it's important to make it clear that you're talking about transfers between British clubs. The first footballer to be transferred for an amount worth a million pounds or more was Giuseppe Savoldi, who moved from Bologna to Napoli in 1975 for the equivalent of approximately £1.2 million. The following year, the world transfer record was raised to the equivalent of £1.75 million when Paolo Rossi moved from Juventus to Vicenza.

© Haydn Thompson 2019