Last summer’s move from Lille to Arsenal made Nicolas Pepe the most expensive African player ever, overtaking Cedric Bakambu.
The Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DRC) striker was formerly the most expensive player on the continent after Beijing Guoan paid £65m to Villarreal for his services.
But that all changed when Arsenal paid a record club fee of £72m to sign Pepe. However, while Pepe and Bakambu are the two most expensive African players, Soccernet decides to take a look at Africa’s most valuable squads.
These squads are ranked based on figures from Transfer Markt
10. Mali: The West Africans are managed by Mohamed Magassouba and have the 10th most valuable squad in Africa. Ranked 56th in the world and third in Africa, Mali’s team have an average age of 25 and have a total of 21 players abroad.
RB Leipzig’s Amadou Haidara is the most expensive player in the squad with a market value of £13.5m pounds.
He has been linked with a move to Italian giants, AC Milan. Other exciting players Maili have in their squad include, Lyon’s Youssouf Koné and Hoffenheim’s Diadie Samassékou.
9. Gabon: The Panthers are the ninth most valuable squad in Africa thanks to Pierre Emerick Aubamaeyang. The Arsenal striker has a market value of £48.8m pounds, which is more than half of the team’s worth.
Gabon has a total market value of £79.90m and have an average age of 27.8 years. They are ranked 17th in Africa and 83rd in the world.
8. Ghana: The Black Stars have produced world-class stars like Michael Essien and Abedi Pele in the past, but right now they don’t have that, and that’s why they are the eighth-most valuable team in Africa.
The four-time African champions are valued at £86.56m and have an average age of 25.6 years. Atletico Madrid’s Thomas Partey is Ghana’s most valuable player (£34.8m) while Swansea striker Andre Ayew is the team’s captain.
7. Cameroon: The Indomitable Lions are valued at £117.36m, which makes them the seventh most expensive team in Africa. The five-time African champions have Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana in their ranks.
The 24-year-old who has been linked with a move to Paris Saint Germain is Cameroon’s star with a market value of £31.3m. The Indomitable Lions are ranked eighth on the continent and 53rd in the world.
6. Ivory Coast: Ivory Coast have Africa’s most expensive player Nicolas Pepe in their ranks, but that only puts them in sixth place.
The Elephants have a squad value worth £125.66m which means Pepe accounts for more than half of their market value. A few years ago, Ivory Coast had the most valuable squad in Africa with stars like Didier Drogba, Yaya Toure and Kolo Toure in the side.
But following the trio’s retirement, the country have struggled to produce more world-class stars. However, they still have the likes of Serge Aurier and Franck Kessie.
5. Egypt: The Pharaohs are arguably the most successful African side with seven AFCON titles, and they currently have the fifth most-valuable squad on the continent. However, they are on this list thanks to Mohamed Salah, who accounts for almost all the market value.
The Egyptian team is valued at £134.42m, while Salah has a market value of £104.5m. Just four players in Egypt’s squad play abroad with the rest playing in the country’s local league.
4. Algeria: The current African champions have the fourth most valuable squad in Africa. They are led by starman and captain, Riyad Mahrez, who is also the most expensive player in the team.
The 29-year-old signed for Manchester City from Leicester City for a reported fee of £60m. Mahrez is City’s record signing, but his value has dropped to £41.8m pounds.
Other stars in Les Fennecs squad included 2019 AFCON’s golden ball winner Ismaël Bennacer and Nice’s Youcef Atal.
3. Nigeria: The Super Eagles are currently ranked third in Africa, and they also have the third most valuable squad. However, they are projected to be number one in a few years as their team is full of young talented players.
They have one of the youngest squads in the world with an average age of 25.5 years. Leicester City’s midfielder Wilfried Ndidi is Nigeria’s most valuable player with a market value of £31.3m.
But that could change soon should Osimhen and Chukwueze who are considered to be Nigeria’s golden boys continue to impress.
2. Morocco: Morocco just about edged out Nigeria to sit second as Africa’s most valuable team. The Atlas Lions are currently one of the most talented teams in Africa.
Borussia Dortmund’s Achraf Hakimi on loan from Real Madrid is valued at £47m, and that makes him Morocco’s most valuable player.
However, Hakim Ziyech is the country’s star man, and he is set to play in the Premier League after Chelsea paid £33m to sign him from Ajax.
1. Senegal: The Teranga Lions are the top-ranked side in Africa, so it’s not a surprise that they are also the most valuable side on the continent.
The 2019 AFCON finalists have players like Liverpool’s Sadio Mane, Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly and PSG’s Idrissa Gueye. Mane is currently the African player of the year, and he is also the most expensive player in the Senegal squad.
The 28-year-old has a market value of £104.3m. Koulibaly, who is attracting interest from Manchester United, is valued at £48.8m.
With an average age of 26 years, Senegal look set to dominate African football for a few years.