With the transfer window well under-way, top sides should not ignore the wealth of talent outside the top divisions.
German magazine SportBild has compiled a list of the top 25 most expensive players outside the top flight of their respective countries, in Europe - using data from transfermarkt.de
There are a number of talents currently playing in the Football League, with only a handful loaned out by Premier League clubs, who make the list, while there is one player in the Spanish second division who makes the cut - on loan from Manchester United.
Here are the notable mentions with English connections...
Thomas Ince (Blackpool)
The Blackpool winger has been linked with a move to the Premier League for over a year now, but remains in wait to secure a big move. Ince rejected a switch to Cardiff in the summer. He has seven goals and six assists this season, with Everton and Swansea most recently linked.
Jordan Rhodes (Blackburn)
Blackburn forward Jordan Rhodes remains a name much touted for a Premier League switch, yet Rovers are unlikely to want to deal for anything less than a big offer. Rhodes is key to any aspirations they have of making the play-offs, having bagged 16 goals in 25 games this season.
Will Hughes (Derby)
Derby starlet Will Hughes has been tipped as the next big star of English football. Rumours emerged earlier this month claiming Liverpool have first option on the midfielder, which remain unconfirmed. Hughes, 18, has three goals and four assists this season.
Nick Powell (Wigan/Manchester United)
Owned by Manchester United, on loan at Wigan, many fans of the Red Devils believe the Englishman should be recalled, which says everything about his supreme talent. Powell, 19, has 10 goals and two assists in all competitions this campaign.
Benoit Assou-Ekotto (QPR/Tottenham)
Tottenham loanee Benoit Assou-Ekotto is one of three QPR players to make the list. The Cameroonian left-back could very easily still be at White Hart Lane had it not been for a fall out with previous boss Andre Villas-Boas. The 21-year-old has contributed one assist this season.
Ivan Ramis (Wigan)
Wigan's Spanish defender is the one player they own who features here. The centre-back has recently recovered from a serious knee injury which prevented him from playing almost the entire 2013, and has played in seven games since early December.
Junior Hoilett (QPR)
It was only 18 months ago Hoilett was linked with Arsenal and Tottenham but a move to QPR backfired with him now playing Championship football attempting to rebuild his reputation. The 23-year-old Canadian winger has just two goals and two assists this season.
Connor Wickham (Sheffield Wednesday/Sunderland)
Sunderland striker Connor Wickham's career was in a rut until he joined Sheffield Wednesday at the end of 2013. He is now displaying the sort of form which saw him land a big Premier League move, scoring a sensational eight goals in 11 games.
Matty Phillips (QPR)
22-year-old Matty Phillips clinched a move to QPR in the summer from Blackpool and remains a talented prospect. Phillips has three goals this season from the right-wing, with one assist to his name.
Chris Eagles (Bolton)
Former Manchester United youth starlet Chris Eagles remains with the Bolton side with which he was relegated from the Premier League. Now 28, he has one goal and two assists this season.
Angelo Henriquez (Real Zaragoza/Manchester United)
Highly rated Chilean prospect Angelo Henriquez had a short spell on loan with Wigan last season. The forward has enjoyed a much more productive spell with Real Zaragoza, scoring five goals in 14 starts. What next season holds for him must depend on if he can finish the campaign strong.
Also of interest...
Denis Suarez (Barcelona B)
Suarez was a Manchester City prospect until the summer, until he clinched a £1 million deal to move back to Spain. He has three goals and five assists for Barcelona B this season and remains a prospect to watch over the course of his career.
image: © Matlock-Photo