The transfer windows are the crazier times in world football. In the 2017 summer transfer window, an estimated £1.62 billion was spent by Premier League clubs in transfers, as they completed 469 deals. The other European leagues were not too far behind. Serie A saw 444 deals completed, spending £1.03 billion, whereas La Liga clubs spent over £1.03 billion. Ligue 1 clubs completed 365 deals, spending approximately £931.3 million, while Bundesliga clubs recorded a total of 274 deals, worth £720 million. In the Premier League, the total spending since the first transfer window in 2003 (January) till 2017 had already crossed £10 billion.
This summer, the Premier League clubs were paralysed by an early withdrawing transfer window, yet managed to spend £877.9m in total. The European clubs still have till the end of the week to complete their business, and so it is hard to rule out further signings. But even though quality in football, just like anywhere else, has its costs, situations often arise where the players fail to live up to the expectations.
These players join a club for diabolical amounts of money and they find the going pretty tough. Sometimes it is a change of country or league, sometimes it is the change of tactics or team mates, but once in a while and occasionally even more often, players with proven track records fall flat on their face after a new transfer and fail to justify their price tag. We take a look at five of the costliest failures in the world of football at present.
#5 Eliaquim Mangala (£32m) - Porto to Manchester City
Mangala had 2 stellar seasons for Porto before he joined Manchester City. At Porto, he played 95 times and scored 13 goals, winning back to back Primeira Liga Titles in 2012 and 2013. In the summer of 2014, Mangala joined Manchester City from Porto for a reported fee of £32m. Unfortunately, he never showed the defensive stability required in the Premier League, even though he was involved in 70 games for City and Mangala was sent out on loan to Valencia in the 2016/17 season. He returned to feature in nine games last season for City, but was again sent out on loan, this time to Everton, in the January window. He played two games for the Toffees, before injuring his knee and being ruled out for the rest of the season. He is currently recovering from injury.
To make matters worse, leaked documents later revealed that he might have cost City in excess of £40m, which makes him one of the costliest flops in the world.