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This article gives a list of British and Irish footballers who have played abroad. During British football history there have been increasing numbers of foreign players who have moved to Britain to play football but far fewer British players have left to pursue a career abroad. It has remained a mystery why only a small number move abroad but ideas such as better wages in Britain and a lower skill level are possible reasons.

The list does not include Welsh, Scottish or English players signing for other clubs in the United Kingdom.


NationalityNameForeign clubPeriodLeague Appearances (Goals)Cup appearances (Goals)
Flag of EnglandBeckham, DavidDavid BeckhamFlag of Spain Real Madrid
Flag of the United States LA Galaxy
Flag of Italy AC Milan
June 2003– May 2007[1]
May 2007–
January 2009–
La Liga: 114 (13)
MLS: 25 (5)*
Serie A: 0 (0)
Copa del Rey: 9 (4); UEFA Champions League: 28 (2)

Coppa Italia: 0 (0)*; UEFA Champions League: 0 (0)*
Flag of EnglandOwen, MichaelMichael OwenFlag of Spain Real MadridAugust 2004[2]–August 2005[3]La Liga: 35 (13)Copa del Rey: 2 (2); UEFA Champions League: 5 (1)
Flag of IrelandHarte, IanIan HarteFlag of Spain LevanteJuly 2004[4]–August 2007[5]La Liga: 30 (1)**
Segunda Division: 26 (3)
Flag of EnglandWoodgate, JonathanJonathan WoodgateFlag of Spain Real MadridAugust 2004[6]–August 2006[7]La Liga: 9 (0)UEFA Champions League: 3 (1)

*Appearance data last updated 16 November 2008.

**Levante were relegated in 2005 and played in the second division in 2005-06 so Ian Harte's La Liga appearances are split into two spells.






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