Tottenham Hotspur can now boast a squad worth €525m (£452m, $563m) more than the original cost of assembling Mauricio Pochettino's current side.

The study carried out CIES Football Observatory also suggests the north Londoners have the third most-valuable squad across Europe's top five leagues, behind Barcelona and Real Madrid respectively.

Barcelona boast Europe's most valuable squad, estimated to be worth €1.071bn, having initially cost €485m to put together. It comes as little surprise to see the La Liga champions in top spot, however, with that figure largely boosted by Lionel Messi's individual value of €171m, having cost the club nothing after coming through the club's La Masia academy. Neymar, despite costing a reported €95m from Santos in 2013, is now worth €246.8m according to CIES' analysis.

But Tottenham's transfer strategy of buying youngsters with rich potential for nominal fees, sees them occupying second place with a squad assembled for €274m now worth a huge €799m.

Following the world record sale of Gareth Bale to Real Madrid in the summer of 2013, Tottenham embarked on an unprecedented spending spree that saw them break their own transfer record on three consecutive occasions.

But the poor return on an investment that exceeded £100m led to the club reconsidering their approach. Since June 2014, the club have spent more than £20m on a player just twice, in Heung-min Son and Moussa Sissoko, with Eric Dier (£3.7m), Dele Alli (£5.5m) and Toby Alderweireld (£12m) arriving for fees that are now considerably eclipsed by their current market value.

Harry Kane
Kane has the sixth highest transfer value across Europe's top five leagues Getty Images

The success of the club's academy also contributes to Tottenham's huge squad value when compared to transfer fee expenditure, with Harry Kane, a key member of the first-team having not cost the club a penny.

Four other Premier League sides feature in the CIES study's top-10 with Leicester City in fourth, Arsenal sixth, Liverpool seventh and Southampton ninth.

Manchester City, whose squad is the second most expensive in Europe behind Real Madrid, are 48<sup>th.

At the other end of the scale, Manchester United sit in 95<sup>th place. CIES data suggests the club have spent €718m assembling Jose Mourinho's current side, which only has a current market value of €700m.

The data also indicates Hull's squad is valued at €14m less than the original financial outlay that went into assembling it.