Footballers destroyed by transfers: There are certain transfers that looked really good on paper before they happened, but once they did, they quickly turned out to be a bermuda triangle for the career of the player in question. They make the move to those clubs, and their entire careers are swallowed up.
Here are 10 footballers destroyed by transfers.
1. Coutinho to Barcelona
Coutinho was that guy at Liverpool. He was running things with the number 10 at his back. He was a magician with the ball at his feet. He was just simply phenomenal. But the Brazilian wanted more out of his career.
Liverpool had started playing better under Klopp, but they were still not winning things, so he wanted out. Barcelona were calling for him to fill the void his international teammate left, and they had the money to pay, so he jumped ship.
Brazilians had always succeeded at Barcelona. From Ronaldo to Rivaldo to Ronaldinho to Neymar. So, he had nothing to fear, he thought. But once he joined, he quickly discovered that things were not the same.
Coutinho, who was always given license to play a free role at Liverpool, was confined to the left wing at Barca and that really stifled him. He tried and tried but he couldn’t succeed there. He just kept watching his value reduce by the day.
Shop quality jerseys at Goal90.shop
Now, he’s in Saudi Arabia, and he probably occasionally thinks about what could have been had he remained at Liverpool. He probably thinks back to Klopp telling him that a statue would be built in his honor if he stayed.
Anyway, he can surely still console himself with the fact that he managed to win a European treble during his loan spell at Bayern, and that’s the only thing he would not have achieved had he remained at Liverpool.
2. Maguire to United
If Maguire could turn back the hands of time, he’d probably consider remaining at Leicester City. The big money move to United brought with it a lot of pressure, and as it appears, the Englishman cracked one too many times.
Since he moved to Manchester, he has been a victim of incessant abuse, ridicule, hate, and even bomb threats, all with nothing to show for it. He has still not won anything with United since he joined in 2019, and that it seemed like the club had a revival with Ten Hag, he was left out and stripped of the captaincy.
He’s back in the fold now but his career could surely have been better if he was a different club.
3. Hazard to Madrid
Hazard’s story is very similar to Coutinho’s. The Belgian left Chelsea so he could go and win the Champions League, only for Chelsea to win it before him.
From the moment Hazard stepped foot in Spain, things have just never clicked for him. If it wasn’t a problem of being unfit, it was a matter of being out of shape, or the manager just not fancying him.
Hazard to Madrid was just such a wrong move, because he could definitely have remained at Chelsea where the fans loved him and go on to become an all-time club legend. But the Madrid move really affected his form even for Belgium, which ultimately led to a somewhat early retirement.
What a shame.
4. Kaka to Madrid
Kaka was one of the best players in the world when he made that big money move from Milan to Madrid in 2009. He had just received the Ballon d’Or 2 years prior, and was still in very fine form. But the transfer to Spain did a number on him.
There were too many superstars in the team, and that probably came with all sorts of pressure and misunderstanding in the dressing room. Kaka would eventually seek a move back to Milan without having done much at Madrid.
But his second stint at Milan was nothing like the first. He ended up spending just one season there before then moving to the US where he ended his career.
5. Luka Jovic
Jovic was one of the finest young strikers in the land when he popped out at Eintracht Frankfurt on loan from Benfica. He was so good that Madrid immediately came for him. They signed the Serbian international in 2019, and the hope was that he was going to go on to do wonders as a backup striker, but that was far from the case.
Jovic hardly played for Madrid, and his injuries that season didn’t help his case at all. Madrid had signed him on a 6-year deal, but after just 1 year and half, they loaned him back to Eintracht. And that was it. This youngster with huge potential had just seen his career reset in just a flash.
He was signed by AC Milan last summer, but it’s unlikely that the 26-year-old will be able to get back to that point where he’s linked with a club as big as Madrid again.
6. Pjanic to Barcelona
Till today, nobody truly understands what went on with that Pjanic-Arthur swap deal between Barcelona and Juventus. All we know is that it wasn’t good for Pjanic at all.
The Bosnian was balling his heart out in Turin, only for him to move to Catalonia and begin to struggle for minutes. This wasn’t even prime Barca, but somehow, Pjanic couldn’t get into the midfield.
Ultimately, he had to be loaned out to Besiktas before then moving to Sharjah in the UAE on a permanent basis last summer.
It’s crazy what that transfer did to Pjanic’s career. But doesn’t this remind you of one other transfer?
7. Arda Turan to Barcelona
Arda Turan was such a baller for Atletico Madrid. He helped them win the league, win the Europa League, and get to the final of the Champions League. The lad was so good that Barcelona just knew they had to buy him.
And they did in 2015, but it was the worst decision ever. The Turkish midfielder moved to Barcelona and just lost his relevance. He was barely playing and eventually had to go on loan to Istanbul Basaksehir in 2018 before finally going full circle, going to end his career at Galatasaray where he started it.
8. Alexis Sanchez to United
Sanchez was a high flier at Arsenal. He was their best player for some time. No wonder he was widely sought-after that period.
But when presented with the blue and red pills, he chose red, and that turned out to be the wrong choice.
He was way off the mark for Manchester United and that led to him being loaned out to Inter Milan after just one year.
Inter would go on to make the deal permanent but Sanchez was still not able to replicate his form at Arsenal. Last summer, his contract with the Italian giants was terminated and he joined Marseille.
9. Torres to Chelsea
This was Torres before he joined Chelsea: Euro winner and Man of the Match in the final, World Cup winner, Ballon d’Or 3rd place, Liverpool Player of the Season, 2-time FIFPro World XI, and on and on.
But after he joined Chelsea, Torres looked like a completely different person. He was so far from that striker he was at Liverpool. And it’s hard to explain how exactly that happened.
The only highlight he had at Chelsea was that goal against Barcelona in the Champions League. Apart from that, he had an absolutely disastrous time in London, one he never truly recovered from.
10. Drinkwater to Chelsea
Drinkwater was having a pretty decent career at Leicester City. He was part of the squad that went on that unbelievable Premier League run in 2016, and what made the story even sweeter for him was that he came up from the Championship with them.
But in 2017, he decided that the fairytale had come to an end. Chelsea had come calling, and he was going to answer. And he probably thought that there was nothing to fear. Kante had made the exact same move only a season prior and won the league as the best player, so he was sure he’d be fine.
But he turned out to be far from fine. His first season was hampered by injuries, and then, in his sophomore season, Chelsea had signed a new coach who didn’t fancy him one bit. He made only one appearance in all competitions that season, so he had to be loaned out. And that was only the start of a whole journey. From Burnley, he went to Aston Villa, then to Kasimpasa in Turkey, then to Reading.
After his loan tours, his time with Chelsea had finally come to an end, so they parted ways. Right now, Drinkwater is without a club and he has been without a club since June.
Anyway, which of these transfers would you say caused the biggest damage to the player’s career? Let us know in the comments.