£34 million. That’s the difference in spending between Manchester United and Liverpool over the past ten years, averaging out at little more than £3 million a season. Whilst United have spent £298 million in the transfer market, an average of £29-£30 million a year, the dippers have spent £264 million, an average of £26-£27 million a year.

Emile Heskey (£11 million) El-Hadji Diouf (£10 million), Salif Diao (£5 million), Jerzy Dudek (£4.85 million) and Bruno Cheyrou (£4 million) can account for that £34 million difference. Money well spent eh?

Former Liverpool manager, Gerard Houllier, joined the club ten years ago, and spent close around £120 million in his six years with them. This includes transfers such as, Nick Barmby (£6 million, staying for two years), Christian Ziege (£5.5 million, staying for one year) and Sander Westerveld (£4 million, staying for two years) as well as the names listed above. Were there any successes to list in the transfer market? Dietmar Hamann (£8 million), John Arne Riise? (£4 million) and Sami Hyypia (£2.6 million) could be considered the more successful, but they’re no world beaters.

Houllier’s replacement, Rafael Benitez, has spent over £130 million in his four years at the club. Fernando Torres shines head and shoulders above his other buys, which include the likes of Craig Bellamy (£6.5 mill, stayed for 1 year), Jermaine Pennant (£8 mill, current player), Robbie Fowler and Andriy Voronin.

Now, this isn’t to say United haven’t paid hefty sums for no marks over this time period, most notably Juan Sebastian Veron, however, there is not a manager who can compete with Ferguson’s buys over the 10 year period. Rio Ferdinand, Wayne Rooney, Cristiano Ronaldo, Patrice Evra, Nemanja Vidic, Carlos Tevez, Anderson, Gabriel YSB Heinze and Michael Carrick, to name a few.

The question is, how much difference has this £3 million more a season made to United over Liverpool?

Manchester United
League title: 6
FA Cup: 2
League Cup: 1
European Cup: 1 (could be 2 next week)
Real Treble: 1

League title: 0
FA Cup: 2
League Cup: 2
European Cup: 1
Mickey Mouse Treble: 1

10 trophies of United to Liverpool’s 5, with the impressive 6 league titles showing the massive gap between the clubs, despite such similar spending.

Oh well dippers, there’s always next year…