Goal Wicket

$100 Million FLOP? Top 10 Biggest transfer failures in Football history Revealed

 

  1. Mario Balotelli (AC Milan to Liverpool, €20M)

Mario Balotelli’s move from AC Milan to Liverpool in 2014 is considered one of the biggest transfer failures in football history. Despite being a confident goal-scorer, Balotelli was unable to fill the void left by Luis Suarez and struggled to make an impact at Liverpool. He scored just 4 goals in 28 appearances for the club and was considered one of the worst signings of the season.

Balotelli’s stats at Liverpool:

Seasons Appearances Goals Assists Trophies
2014-15 28 4 0 0
Total 28 4 0 0

 

  1. Kaka (AC Milan to Real Madrid, €67M)

Another notable transfer failure is Kaka’s move from AC Milan to Real Madrid in 2009. Despite being one of the best players of his generation and winning the Ballon d’Or in 2007, Kaka was unable to replicate his success at AC Milan at Real Madrid. Injury problems and the arrival of other star players hindered his performance and he was unable to live up to the high expectations set by the €67 million transfer fee.

Kaka’s Stats at Real Madrid:

Seasons Appearances Goals Assists Trophies
2009-10 33 9 8
2010-11 20 7 6 Copa del Rey (1)
2011-12 40 8 14 La Liga (1)
2012-13 27 5 5 Supercopa de Espana (1)
Total 120 29 32 3

 

  1. Paul Pogba (Juventus to Man United, €105M)

Paul Pogba’s return to Manchester United in 2016 also proved to be a failure. Despite having a successful stint at Juventus, Pogba was unable to live up to the high expectations set by his €105 million transfer fee. He struggled with consistency and had issues with his manager, Jose Mourinho, ultimately leading to his departure from the club.

Pogba’s stats at Manchester United:

Seasons Appearances Goals Assists Trophies
2016-17 51 9 6 Europa League (1)
EFL Cup (1)
2017-18 37 6 12
2018-19 47 16 11
2019-20 22 1 4
2020-21 42 6 9
2021-22 27 1 9
Total 226 39 51 2

 

  1. Angel Di Maria (Real Madrid to Man United, €75M)

Argentine winger Angel Di Maria was considered one of the best in the world when he left Real Madrid to join Manchester United in 2014. However, his time at Old Trafford was a disappointment, as he struggled to adapt to the new club and was used in a different position by then-manager Louis Van Gaal. Despite his solid start, Di Maria’s form quickly dropped off and he left for Paris Saint-Germain after just one season, with Manchester United fans considering him one of the worst signings in the club’s history.

Di Maria’s stat at Manchester United

Seasons Appearances Goals Assists Trophies
2014-15 32 4 12 0
Total 32 4 12 0
  1. Fernando Torres (Liverpool to Chelsea, €58.50M)

Fernando Torres, also known as “El Nino”, was considered one of the greatest strikers of his generation before joining Chelsea in 2011. However, his time at Stamford Bridge was a major disappointment, as he struggled to score goals and often missed easy chances. Despite winning the Champions League and Europa League with Chelsea, Torres is still remembered as one of the biggest flops in transfer history due to his individual performance and his high price tag.

Torres’s stat at Chelsea

Seasons Appearances Goals Assists Trophies
2010-11 18 1 2
2011-12 49 11 16 UEFA Champions League
FA Cup
2012-13 64 22 11 UEFA Europa League
2013-14 41 11 6
Total 172 45 35 3
  1. Romelu Lukaku (Inter Milan to Chelsea, €113 million)

Moving into the top 5 here comes another latest and biggest flop of Chelsea, Romelu Lukaku. Romelu Lukaku’s return to Chelsea from Inter Milan in 2021 was a major disappointment for the London club. Despite scoring on his debut, Lukaku quickly fell out of favor with head coach Thomas Tuchel and expressed his desire to return to Inter Milan. He struggled to make an impact on the pitch and ultimately joined Inter on loan after just one season at Chelsea, earning the label of the “worst Chelsea signing of all time.”

Lukaku’s stat at Chelsea

Seasons Appearances Goals Assists Trophies
2021-22 44 15 2 FIFA Club World Cup
Total 44 15 2 1
  1. Alexis Sanchez (Arsenal to Manchester United, €34M)

Alexis Sanchez was a fan favorite at Arsenal, where he scored 80 goals and 45 assists in 166 appearances. However, his move to Manchester United in 2018 was a disaster, as he struggled to adapt to his new club and was plagued by injuries. Despite his talent, Sanchez was unable to replicate his form at Arsenal and eventually left the club on loan to Inter Milan.

 

Sanchez’s stat at Manchester United

 

Season Appearances Goals Assists Trophies
2018-19 27 2 4 0
Total 27 2 4 0
  1. Antoine Griezmann (Athletico Madrid to Barcelona, €120M)

Barcelona signed Antoine Griezmann for €120 million in 2019 as an attempt to replace Neymar. However, Griezmann’s time at Barcelona was a disappointment. He struggled to find the same goal-scoring form he had at Atletico Madrid, and his assist and chance creation numbers were below average for the price tag. Griezmann only had 35 goals and 17 assists in 102 appearances for Barcelona, and eventually returned to Atletico Madrid in 2021.

Griezmann’s stat at Barcelona

Seasons Appearances Goals Assists Trophies
2019-20 48 15 4
2020-21 51 20 13 Copa del Rey
2021-22 3 0 0
Total 102 35 17 1
  1. Eden Hazard (Chelsea to Real Madrid, €115 million)

Eden Hazard was a star player at Chelsea, scoring 110 goals and giving 92 assists in 351 appearances. However, his time at Real Madrid was a disappointment. Hazard suffered frequent injuries and struggled to live up to the expectations placed upon him. He appeared in 66 games, scoring only 6 goals and assisting 9, and was criticized for showing up to the 2020-21 campaign overweight.

 

 

Hazard’s stat at Real Madrid

 

Seasons Appearances Goals Assists Trophies
2019-20 22 1 6 La Liga
2020-21 21 4 1
2021-22 23 1 2 La Liga
Supercopa de Espana
UEFA Champions League
Total 66 6 9 4
  1. Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool to Barcelona, €135 million)

Philippe Coutinho’s transfer from Liverpool to Barcelona in 2018 was the biggest transfer failure in football history. Coutinho was expected to hit the ground running at Barcelona but instead, he struggled to adapt to the team and lost his place in the lineup. Fans began criticizing him for his poor performances, and he eventually joined Bayern Munich on loan. Despite a successful loan spell with Bayern, Coutinho’s time at Barcelona was ultimately a disappointment.

Coutinho’s stat at Barcelona

Seasons Appearances Goals Assists Trophies
2017-18 22 10 7 La Liga
Copa del Rey
2018-19 54 11 5 Supercopa de Espana
La Liga
2020-21 14 3 2
2021-22 16 2 0 Copa del Rey
Total 106 26 14 5

 

Leave a Reply

About Us

A small effort to unite worldwide fans of Football and Cricket.

Recent Article

Follow Us

Sign up for our Newsletter