With big-money transfers happening in these recent days football worldwide, it is still amazing to have found some club do ‘steal’ the greatest bargains in football.
Every football fans all love the big money bargain transfer as it bring hope of some more additional quality to the team as we’ve seen in the last summer tagged ‘Greatest of all time summer transfer’.
Free things sometimes are best, BUT won’t you love it when a player of less than £10m get your team 15-20 goals a season? Almost FREE right?……..
Below goes the list of players we ‘SOCCERBAZE’ in our opinion feel are among the greatest bargains in football history.
20 ‘Cheat’ Greatest Bargains in Football
NOTE: The below list is not ordered or selected based on their playing ability but their worth and value to the team compared to the amount they’re bought.
As all players in the list are bought below the price of £10m as some went through to become club legends.
Here we go….
Eric Cantona – Leeds to Manchester United, 1992 – (£1.2m)
Let put the price aside – like we’ve said earlier, it’s a bargain transfers. Cantona is one of the greatest forward ever and among the Premier League top 10 all time top scorer.
He joined Manchester United in 1992 who are without a league title in 25 years and inspire them to their first four of 13 in 21 seasons.
Robert Lewandowski – Lech Poznan to Borussia Dortmund, 2010 – (£4m)
The Polish forward was supposed to make a move to Blackburn then but was prevented by the Iceland volcanic ash cloud which saw him moved to Dortmund instead.
Lewy scored 103 goals in 187 appearance during his days with the Black and Yellow helping Dortmund win two consecutive Bundesliga titles.
Borussia Dortmund to Bayern Munich, 2014 – (Free)
At the end of his contact at Dortmund, Lewandowski makes a surprising move to rival club Bayern Munich in 2014 on a free transfer. Biggest bargains cheat chit right?..
Since then the 30-year-old has been a pivotal part of the current Bayern team as he has proved to be one of the most deadliest strikers in Europe so far. Also breaking the 49-year-old Bundesliga record previously hold by Gerd Müller.
Marcelo – Fluminense to Real Madrid , 2006 – ($8.7m)
Real Madrid made one of the biggest bargains in football by bringing the Brazilian defender to Bernabue from his home land in 2006.
Marcelo has since then become Real Madrid legend and regarded by some as the best left back ever. He also play an important role in Madrid’s back-to-back Champions League title.
Vincent Kompany – Hamburg to Manchester City, 2008 – (£6m)
The Belgium international was just 22-year-old when signed by Manchester City in the summer of 2008.
Kompany was regarded as one of the best in his position leading City to four league titles and a further six domestic trophies during his time as the club captain.
Henrik Larsson – Feyenoord to Celtic, 1997 – (£650,000)
Larsson played a crucial role in his first season at Celtic, helping the team win their first league title in 10 years. His 53 goals in a 2000/01 season that saw him win the European Golden Shoe.
The Swedish striker was nicknamed by Celtic fans as ‘The King of Kings’ after scoring 242 goals in 315 matches and help them reach the 2003 UEFA Cup Finals. A great bargains right?…
Andrea Pirlo – Milan to Juventus, 2011 – (Free)
Pirlo refuse Milan contract extension in 2011 and the midfielder decided to make a move to rivals club Juventus. A move Gianluigi Buffon described as the ‘signing of the century’.
The midfield maestro lifted four league title and three Italian Cups with Juventus. He also bag three consecutive Serie A Footballer of the Year awards to his name.
Cesar Azpilicueta – Marseille to Chelsea, 2012 – (£6.5m)
Azpilicueta arrived at Chelsea as an unknown name in the summer of 2012. The Spaniard has since then played almost all Chelsea’s Premier League games since then missing less than five.
Having perfect himself in different roles at the back-line at Stamford Bridge, has been seen as one of the best in the Premier League winning two Premier League titles, the FA Cup, League Cup and two Europa League trophies and the 2021 UEFA Champions League and Super Cup Final.
Raul – Atletico Madrid to Real Madrid, 1992 – (Free)
Raul moved from Atletico Madrid youth team to neighborhood club Real Madrid academy due to then Atletico Madrid president’s decision to close their youth academy to save cost.
The Spaniard forward was promoted to Madrid senior team in 1994 and since then had go on to become the club’s second all-time goal scorer with 323 goals in 741 appearance winning sixteen major trophies including six La Liga titles and three UEFA Champions League titles.
Peter Schmeichel – Brondby to Manchester United, 1991 – (£500,000)
The Danish goalkeeper deal was termed as the ‘Biggest bargains of the century’ by former manager, Sir Alex Ferguson and was regarded one of the greatest of all time goalkeeper in Premier League history.
Schmeichel kept 156 clean sheets in his 348 games for United, winning ten tittles in his eight years of stay at the Manchester.
Alessandro Del Piero – Padova to Juventus, 1993 – (£421,000)
Del Piero signed for the Old Lady for a ‘cheat’ fee less than £500,000 where he spent 19 years (11 as the club captain) and holds the club record for most goals (290) and appearances (705).
During his spell at Turin, he won six Serie A titles, the Coppa Italia, four Supercoppa Italiana, the UEFA Champions League, the UEFA Super Cup, the UEFA Intertoto Cup, and the Intercontinental Cup.
Petr Cech – Rennes to Chelsea, 2004 – (£7m)
Cech joined Chelsea in 2004 from Rennes and quickly made a huge impact with a record 21 clean sheets in his debut Premier League season. He is regarded by many as one of the greatest goalkeeper in football history.
Čech progressed to be Chelsea’s greatest ever goalkeeper, helping the club win four Premier League titles, four FA Cups, three League Cups, one UEFA Champions League title, and one UEFA Europa League title.
N’Golo Kante – Caen to Leicester City, 2015 – (£5.6m)
The humble Frenchman arrived at Leicester City in 2015. One of the biggest bargains ‘cheat’ in football history. Little did he knows what the future holds for him in the Premier League and football World generally.
He is arguably one of the best defensive midfielder ever in football history and termed by many football players as ‘cheat’ as he’s almost everywhere on the football pitch.
The midfield maestro spent just one season at Leicester, playing a key role in helping the team win their first ever Premier League title and earn a place in the 2015/16 PFA team of the year.
In just five year, Kante has rose from nothing to a World Cup and Champions League winner. Being shortlisted among the top three 2021 UEFA best award and Ballon d’Or award.
His £35m move to Chelsea is for sure eligible for the biggest bargains list.
Paul Pogba – Manchester United to Juventus, 2012 – (Free)
Pogba was forced to leave the Old Trafford at the end of his contact in 2012 due to lack of opportunities as the then-teenager went on to join Juventus.
On his arrival at Turin, he proved himself to be one of the best young talent in the world and helped the Old Lady to a four consecutive Serie A title and also won the 2013 Golden boy award.
Patrick Vieira – Milan to Arsenal, 1996 – (£3.5m)
Viera struggle to earn a first team place at Milan landed him at the North London. Many think the midfielder was a signing of Arséne Wenger but he came before Wenger.
£3.5m was definitely a steal by the Gunner for a player like Viera. A member of Arsenal ‘The Invincibles‘ squad, winning three FA Cup trophies as well as three Premier League titles.
Ashley Cole – Arsenal to Chelsea, 2006 – (£5m + William Gallas)
Following a successful spell at the North London. Ashley Cole made a last minute switch to rival club, Chelsea in the summer of 2006 with Gallas moving the other way round.
No doubt the Blues made the better deal as Cole won a total eight trophies in blues shirt and regarded as the best left back in the world during his stay at Stamford Bridge overtaking close rival Patrick Evra.
Andy Robertson – Hull City to Liverpool, 2017 – (£8m)
One of the recent days biggest bargains in Premier League. Robertson was relegated with Hull City in 2017 before Jurgen Klopp made a wise decision to bring back the defender to Premier League basically as a back up for Alberto Moreno.
After two outstanding seasons, Robertson is now a Champions League winner, and one of the best left backs in Europe.
Robin van Persie – Feyenoord to Arsenal, 2004 – (£2.75m)
Van Persie arrived Arsenal in 2004, though there are big expectations from him on his arrival.
The Dutchman scored 132 goals in his spell at Arsenal and grew to become one of the greatest strikers to ever grace the Premier League. Although the only trophy he won with the Gunners is the FA Cup before his move to Manchester United.
Esteban Cambiasso – Real Madrid to Inter, 2004 – (Free)
Cambiasso fail to pave way for himself at Madrid and moved to Inter on a free transfer after his contact expires at Bernabue in 2004.
The Argentine spent a decade at San Siro, making 431 appearances for I Nerazzurri and winning 15 trophies.
Jay-Jay Okocha – PSG to Bolton, 2002 – (Free)
Okocha arrived in England after leaving Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer in the summer of 2002 immediately after the World Cup game.
He was Bolton’s fans favourite due to his impact in the team, with the team printing shirts with the inscription “Jay-Jay – so good they named him twice“.
Okocha as the Bolton captain led them to their first ever cup final in nine years as they came runners-up of the 2004 Football League Cup losing to Middlesbrough.
Jamie Vardy – Fleetwood Town to Leicester City, 2012 – (£1 million)
Vardy join Leicester City in the championship in 2012 for a non-League record transfer fee of £1 million and helped the team win the Championship in 2014 to promote to the Premier League.
On Leicester arrival to the Premier League, the Englishman set a new record for scoring in 11 consecutive games. 2015/16 saw Vardy and Leicester City won the Premier League for the first time and and was voted the EPL Player of the Season and FWA Footballer of the Year.
Vardy’s appearance in the 2021 FA Cup Final saw him become the first ever player to play in every round of the competition. He also won the EPL Golden boot for 2019/20 season, becoming the oldest player to win the award.
Some Other mention in the biggest bargains in football
- James Milner – Manchester City to Liverpool – Free
- Michu – Rayo Vallecano to Swansea – £2m
- Demba Ba – West Ham to Newcastle – Free
- Ruud Gullit – Sampdoria to Chelsea – Free
- David Ginola – PSG to Newcastle – £2.5m
- Ole Gunnar Solskjaer – Molde to Manchester United – £1.5m
- Zlatan Ibrahimovic – PSG to Manchester United – Free
- Dele Alli – MK Dons to Tottenham – £5m
- Edwin van der Sar – Fulham to Manchester United – £2m
- Michael Ballack – Bayern Munich to Chelsea – Free
- Paolo Di Canio – Sheffield Wednesday to West Ham – £1.75m
- Kolo Toure – ASEC Mimosas to Arsenal – £150,000
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