$3 billion: Amount football clubs spent on transfers in 2011

London: Figures compiled by world football governing body FIFA showed that clubs paid a total $3 billion in 2011 to sign players.

The total was calculated by FIFA`s new transfer matching system, which has been introduced in an attempt to strengthen policing of football`s money flows.

The new system requires clubs signing players internationally to record with FIFA their contracts and all payments they make, which must go to the selling club.

"There were some pretty crazy descriptions of behaviour going on in 2008 and 2009 when we began to set up the system," Mark Goddard, the general manager of the transfer matching system was quoted as saying by the Guardian.

FIFA said that the decision to bring in the system was made to make all transactions transparent.

"We are looking for clubs to be transparent," he said, "and we are able to verify the information given with other bodies including UEFA."

"We know there is extreme behaviour out there," Goddard said. "There are still limitations with this system, but we are trying to ensure money is being paid between clubs. We are drawing a line in the sand, that nobody can get in between clubs."


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