Five teams who lose their best players every year
These five European clubs have mastered the art of selling their best players and replacing them with ease.
If you look at recent Premier League history, you will see two instances of top teams struggling to live up to expectations following the departure of star players.
The first, in 2013/14, when Tottenham lost Gareth Bale and struggled massively to fill the void left by their talisman and the second, in 2014/15, when Liverpool failed to replicate their amazing performance from 2013/14 following the departure of Luis Suarez.
What this shows is that it is never easy to replace your best players. So spare a thought for those clubs who constantly lose their best players to Europe’s richest and finest.
Take Monaco for example. The defending Ligue 1 champions built a young and strong squad with considerable effort but have already lost a major core of that team. Bernardo Silva and Benjamin Mendy joined Manchester City and Tiemoue Bakayoko joined Chelsea. There is also the possibility that they could lose the most wanted prodigy in football, Kylian Mbappe.
Monaco have only been in this situation for a couple of seasons now; there are several clubs across Europe who have seen other clubs poach their best talents year in year out and here are the top five teams who keep losing their best players every year.
Honourable mentions: Sevilla, FC Porto, Schalke 04, AS Monaco and PSV Eindhoven
#5 Ajax FC
Gone are the days when Ajax were a European superpower and also one of Europe’s supreme talent factories. Now, they are only the latter.
The Dutch giants gave the world some supreme talents in the 70s and have continued to deliver on the same line. The emergence of players of the highest order like Johan Cruyff, Marco van Basten, Frank Rijkaard, Edgar Davids, Wesley Sneijder and several more players over the years is a testament to the quality of their youth setup.
Despite producing such world-class players, Ajax have struggled to keep hold of them every year. The Dutch club reached the final of the Europa League last season with a very young squad but they have already lost their captain Davy Klaassen to Everton, Kenny Tete to Olympique Lyon and if rumours are to be believed, they might lose their Colombian defender, Davinson Sanchez, as well.
Three of Tottenham Hotspur’s key players, Christian Eriksen, Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen are products of the Ajax academy. In addition to these three, some other major players sold by Ajax in the 2010s include Arkadiusz Milik (Napoli), Jasper Cillessen (Barcelona), Daley Blind (Manchester United), Timothy Fosu Mensah (Manchester United) and Luis Suarez (Liverpool).