Data shows Man City as one of the most 'stable' teams worldwide
REVEALED: Manchester City have used the second-fewest number of players in world football over the last five years with Liverpool not far behind – while one Brazilian team has played 168! So, how many stars has YOUR club picked?
- Data reveals that Manchester City is one of the most ‘stable’ teams in the world
- Only one club in world football has used fewer players than Man City since 2018
- Meanwhile, heavy spenders Chelsea have used 41 players in the last year alone
Manchester City has been revealed as one of the world’s most ‘stable’ teams according to recent data, with the Premier League champions using the second-fewest number of players of any team in the world across a five-year period.
Based on data compiled by the 411th CIES Football Observatory on Tuesday, teams currently competing across 75 leagues worldwide have been ranked according to the number of different players they have fielded in domestic league matches since 2018.
Second only to Swedish outfit Halmstads BK, who have used only 44 players over the last five years, Manchester City have used fewer players than any club in world football, selecting 47 players in a five-year stint which saw four Premier League titles go to the Etihad.
Down largely to their unique recruitment policy, Athletic Bilbao follow City on the list (49), with the club continuing their unwritten rule of signing players only linked to the Basque country. No side has used fewer players than the LaLiga club across the last 10 years.
Liverpool share fourth place with German outfit Borussia Monchengladbach, with both clubs having only used 51 players since 2018, four more than Manchester City.
Only one club in the world has used fewer players than Manchester City in the last five years
Liverpool also boast a ‘stable’ record having only used four more players than City in that time
City and Liverpool, who have dominated English football over the last five years winning all five Premier League titles on offer – as well as a combined seven FA Cup and League Cup trophies – have clearly felt less compelled to chop and change their squads year after year, particularly in comparison to other top-flight giants.
Midway through a £600million season of heavy investment from chairman Todd Boehly, Chelsea have used 41 players in the last 365 days alone, the second-highest of any Premier League squad behind serial shoppers Nottingham Forest (46).
Extend that to the last five years, and Chelsea come out as the 10th most ‘stable’ team in the Premier League, a familiar spot for Blues fans considering their current position in the table.
No team has chopped and changed more than Premier League newcomers Nottingham Forest across the last five seasons, with their player count of 121 individuals coming in significantly higher than the league’s next most ‘unstable’ club Fulham (81).
Meanwhile, Newcastle (55), Leicester (56), Crystal Palace (56) and Tottenham (57) have each been steady with regards to their incomings and outgoings across the last five years, while Manchester United(61) , Brighton (61) and Arsenal (62) aren’t too far behind.
Elsewhere, LaLiga giants Barcelona have used 79 players during that spell, showing how much of a transformation the Catalan outfit has experienced since the exits of club legends Andres Iniesta in 2018 and Lionel Messi in 2020.
Chelsea chairman Todd Boehly has spent over £600million in his first year at Stamford Bridge
Nottingham Forest – who are funded by Greek mogul Evangelos Marinakis (pictured above) – have used more players than any other Premier League outfit over the last five years (121)
Number of players fielded in domestic leagues since 2018
*Data has tracked the players until February 22, 2023
Premier League clubs who’ve used the fewest players
Manchester City – 47
Liverpool – 51
Newcastle – 55
Leicester – 56
Crystal Palace – 56
Tottenham – 57
Manchester United – 61
Brighton – 61
Arsenal – 62
Chelsea – 65
Premier League clubs who’ve used the most players
Nottingham Forest – 121
Fulham – 81
Leeds – 78
Aston Villa – 77
Bournemouth – 72
Brentford – 70
Southampton – 69
Everton – 68
West Ham – 68
Wolves – 65
Clubs worldwide who’ve used the fewest players
Halmstads BK – 44
Manchester City – 47
Athletic Bilbao – 49
Borussia Monchengladbach – 51
Liverpool – 51
Bayern Leverkusen – 52
Al-Sadd FC – 53
New York City – 53
Philadelphia Union – 54
Kawasaki Frontale – 55
Clubs worldwide who’ve used the most players
AA Ponte Preta – 168
Royal AM – 166
EC Vitoria – 162
Deportivo Pasto – 162
EC Juventude – 161
CR Brasil – 157
Sampaio – 156
ABC – 156
Vila Nova FC – 155
Londrina EC – 154
Conversely, Real Madrid are second to Athletic Bilbao among Spain’s top flight sides, deploying just 57 players under managers Zinedine Zidane, Julen Lopetegui, Santiago Solari and Carlo Ancelotti.
Their rivals Atletico Madrid, perhaps unsurprisingly given their loyal support of long-standing manager Diego Simeone, have used only 67 players and come third in the Football Observatory’s list.
Data from Serie A almost resembles the summit of the Italian top flight, with runaway title contenders Napoli leading the pack ahead of Inter, Lazio and Milan, who make up the top four in the Scudetto.
Napoli have used just 56 players across five years, while Inter, Lazio and Milan have fielded 63, 67 and 68 respectively.
Pep Guardiola (L) and Jurgen Klopp (R) have by and large opted for consistency at their clubs
Ruthless in their mission to hunt down the elusive Champions League trophy, France’s heavy spenders Paris Saint-Germain have called on 80 players during that time, frequently experimenting with new formulas in their hunt for Europe’s illustrious crown.
In the Bundesliga, serial winners Bayern Munich have used 70 players since 2018, although half of those stars have come in the last year alone (35). Dortmund, meanwhile, have fielded 40 players since last February but only 68 across the five-year period.
Overall, Brazilian outfits came out the most ‘unstable’ in the statistical analysis. Of the top 10 clubs worldwide who used the most players during the last five years, eight of them were Brazilian.
No club fielded more players between 2018 and 2023 than Brazilian side AA Ponte Preta, who used a staggering 168 players during that period.
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