The incredible XI Monaco sold for over €600 million
In 2004, Monaco was the runners-up in the UEFA Champions League final but in 2011, the club was relegated to the French second division. A few months after the relegation, Russia billionaire, Dmitry Rybolovlev, purchased 66.67% of the club.
Using his funds, the club made a swift return to the Ligue 1 and spent roughly around £140 million in 2013 on players like Radamel Falcao and James Rodriguez among others.
The following season, the club changed its transfer strategy and sold its superstars in favour building a team of promising youngsters. The aim was to sign promising players at a young age for a nominal fee and sell them for a huge profit after they’ve realised their potential.
In 2016/17, Monaco scored 107 goals, picked up 95 points and won the Ligue 1 title with an eight-point lead over big-hitters PSG. They even made the UEFA Champions League semifinal in the same season but their success came at a cost.
In the last two summers, Monaco sold almost the entire core of the team that won the league title. In recent years, Monaco has sold an entire starting XI worth of players for over €600 million!
Stephane Ruffier - Sold to Saint-Étienne for €8m in 2011
Stephane Ruffier is the only player in this XI who was sold before the takeover in 2011. Ruffier, a product of the Monaco academy, played 130 games for the club and was the club’s captain in his final season.
Ruffier was extraordinarily good in the 2009/10 season for Monaco and kept 15 clean sheets in 32 league games. His form in that season even earned him a call-up to the France national team.
He started the following season in excellent form. However, a groin injury ended his season prematurely and his absence eventually cost the club its Ligue 1 status as they finished 18th.
Ruffier had the opportunity to move to Manchester City in 2011 but he opted to join his current club, Saint-Etienne, as he believed the club would provide him with better playing opportunities.