Before the Premier League behemoth emerged in 1992, the British transfer record had started to take on a familiar pattern.
To put it simply, the UK's top talent was routinely being picked off by cash-richer leagues across Europe.
So the likes of Mark Hughes, Chris Waddle and Paul Gascoigne would all be packing their suitcases and heading for sunnier climes – and bigger wage packets – in Spain, France and Italy, respectively.
But that would all change with the emergence and rapid growth of the re-packaged English top-flight, which meant that clubs were now in the market to bring top foreign talent over to the UK – and keep local talent in Britain.
Huge TV deals and investment from foreign ownership would mean the likes of Dennis Bergkamp, Juan Sebastian Veron, Robinho and Andriy Shevchenko would soon be plying their trade in the Premier League after record-breaking moves.
In recent years, though, it is Spanish giants Real Madrid and Barcelona who have taken over as the biggest buyers, paying mammoth fees for Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Philippe Coutinho.
Take a look through the photo gallery above, of the movers and shakers who made record-breaking moves to and from British clubs.
To move on to the next image, simply click on the arrows or swipe on your device.