Top five players that managers regretted selling
4. Jaap Stam – Manchester United to Lazio
Ever since his departure from Old Trafford in 2001, Sir Alex Ferguson, a man, not known for making too many mistakes, let alone admitting them, did so, when he openly said that he shouldn’t have let Jaap Stam depart. That is indeed high praise for a central defender, who was starting to show signs of becoming a truly world class players.
A high-profile fallout with the manager meant that the Dutchman was shown the door. But, United didn’t recover from that for a couple of seasons and had United kept hold of the Dutchman, they wouldn’t have had to smash the club record free to bring Rio Ferdinand to Old Trafford.
3. Xabi Alonso – Liverpool to Real Madrid
Although an offer of £30m sounds tempting for a 28-year-old, the truth is that Liverpool haven’t been the same since the departure of Xabi Alonso to Real Madrid. The Spaniard exceptional ability to not just keep the ball rolling but also spray accurate long balls at will is something the Reds could have surely done with in the subsequent in which saw them fall from a top four club to one that struggles to finish in the Europa League.Whilst Liverpool were probably right in taking the money in 2009, in hindsight, they would have been better served by keeping hold of the player, who has only gotten better at Madrid and has been one of the first names on the team sheet, even at the age of 32. Like a fine wine, Alonso has merely gotten better with age, perhaps Liverpool didn’t bank on that. Published 25 Jan 2014, 14:09 IST