Keith Jowett takes a look at five high profile moves that saw players move to supposedly ‘bigger’ clubs – but didn’t quite play out the way they’d have hoped.
Raheem Sterling has recently decided to put aside contract talks and continue them in the summer. This has now bred speculation of a summer departure. Possible clubs that have been mentioned are Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Arsenal.
Not only are there numerous examples of young English players moving too soon and ruining their careers, here are 5 European players whose career’s nosedived after a big money move to a ‘bigger’ club.
Ricardo Quaresma Porto to Inter Milan
This Portuguese winger was on fire between the years 2004 and 2008. He Scored 30 goals in 156 appearances. Quaresma was then bought by Inter Milan for a massive $33 million. With a fee that large expectations were high. Over two painful seasons Quaresma only managed to score 1 goal (On loan at Chelsea). He later joined Be?ikta?.
Juan Sebastián Verón Lazio to Manchester United
This particular Argentinian midfielder was quite successful in Italy winning multiple domestic cups, the UEFA cup in 1999, and the Serie A title. United bought Verón for a whopping $46.1 million in 2001. He only managed 7 goals in 51 games. Chelsea decided to attain his services in 2003 for $23 million. Things didn’t work out again. Chelsea then soon realized they hadn’t got what they were looking for.
Roberto Soldado Valencia to Tottenham
When Gareth Bale left for Real Madrid in the summer of 2013, Daniel Levy and co. wanted a player that could fill the new goal scoring hole in their squad. He cost the North London club $38 Million. Simply put, things just haven’t clicked. Soldado scored 30 goals in 46 appearances for Valencia before signing. However he has only scored 15 goals in 68 appearances for Tottenham so far. With Harry Kane firing on all cylinders things aren’t looking good for dear Roberto.
Fernando Torres Liverpool to Chelsea
In the January transfer window of 2011 Liverpool sold El Nino for $82 Million to Chelsea. After scoring 82 goals in 142 appearances for the Reds, it looked as if he would produce at Chelsea. From the miss at United to the one against Olimpija Ljubijana form two yards things have never really been the same. Currently on loan at Atletico Torres is regaining some of his old form. Hopefully things get better for the Spaniard.
Kaka AC Milan to Real Madrid
Before his big move to Real Madrid, Kaka was fantastic at Milan. Scoring 95 goals in 270 appearances, he made quite a name for himself. However after winning the Ballon D’Or the Spanish
giants came calling with a previous record fee of $94 million. After the move kaka could never get back to his best. Only scoring 29 goals in 120 appearances Kaka was plagued by injury throughout his time at the Bernabéu.
If Sterling does decide to leave it may not be the best choice. He is developing well at Anfield and it would be a shame to see him fail elsewhere. However if his demands remain this high things could get messy. With heavy backlash from media around the globe, perhaps his stance on the contract can be changed. One thing that must be remembered throughout is that no player is bigger than the club.