The Spain international, formerly of Chelsea, who is responsible for the highest and second-highest loan fees ever could be borrowed again this month.
In the wake of the stink being created by Man Utd’s demands to allow Newcastle to borrow Jesse Lingard, we’ve taken a look at the most expensive loan players ever.
All figures are taken from the wonderful Transfermarkt.
10) Mattia Destro: Genoa to Roma – £10.35m
It was a complicated arrangement also involving Siena in 2012 when Destro moved between Genoa and Roma. The striker was officially a Genoa player when Roma borrowed him for a big fee to replace Liverpool-bound Fabio Borini while retaining the option to make it a permanent deal for approximately another £4.5million. The 30-year-old is now back at Genoa having gone from Roma via a loan spell with Milan and then Bologna.
9) Odion Ighalo: Shanghai Shenhua to Manchester United – £10.8m
United and Tottenham were both scrambling for a striker on deadline day in the winter window of 2020, with both in for the ex-Watford centre-forward. Ighalo opted for United, who had had a £20million bid for Josh King rejected that day by Bournemouth. He became United’s first loan signing since Radamel Falcao five and a half years prior.
8) Nicolo Barella: Cagliari to Inter Milan – £10.8m
The Italy international’s first year at the San Siro was spent as a loanee, which gave Inter the chance to cobble together the £22million they were obliged to cough up after a season. The total value of the move could reach £45million depending on add-ons and Inter have already renewed his contract back in November despite it still having two years left to run.
=6) Federico Chiesa: Fiorentina to Juventus – £11.34m
Similarly, the deal that took Chiesa to Juve was a permanent arrangement in all but name. The Old Lady dressed it up as a two-year loan but they became obligated to pay around £36million in 18 months when he surpassed 10 goals and 10 assists – figures he hit in his opening campaign in Turin.
=6) Carlos Tevez: West Ham to Manchester United – £11.43m
Tevez spent two years on loan at United – though who was doing the lending was not entirely clear at the time. The Argentinian left West Ham for Old Trafford in 2007 but the player’s registration was owned by the Media Sports Investment group. It seems that MSI paid West Ham £2million to release what claim they had on Tevez before United coughed up to Kia Joorabchian.
5) James Rodríguez: Real Madrid to Bayern Munich – £11.7m
The then-Colombia captain moved to Bayern for two years by which time the Bavarians had the option to make it a permanent stay for an additional £37million. Unsurprisingly since he made only 13 appearances in his last year, Rodriguez was packed off back to Madrid before he was dispatched straight to Everton.
4) Duvan Zapata: Sampdoria to Atalanta – £12.6m
Atalanta took the Colombia striker in 2018 on a two-year loan deal with the option to buy in 2020 for a fee slightly smaller than the amount paid to borrow him from Samp. Atalanta stood to make a small profit had they accepted Newcastle’s £25million offer last week but the Italians sense an opportunity to rinse the Magpies of a few more euros.
3) Giovani Lo Celso: Real Betis to Tottenham Hotspur – £14.4m
Spurs were keen to buy the Argentina playmaker from the off but as the clock ticked down on the summer 2019 transfer window, they had to make do with borrowing Lo Celso for the season. That suited Betis since the loan fee could be deducted from the amount Spurs might have paid to make it a permanent deal, which PSG were entitled to 20 per cent of. So Spurs paid a hefty loan price before making it a permanent arrangement halfway through his year-long loan.
2) Alvaro Morata: Chelsea to Atletico Madrid – £16.2m
The Spain striker returned to his boyhood club after a miserable season and a half at Chelsea where he scored 24 goals in 72 appearances. The original deal in January 2019 was an 18-month loan but when it was made permanent in July that same year, unbelievably, Chelsea clawed back most if not all of the original £58million outlay it took to bring him from Real Madrid in 2017. A year later, he was being loaned out again…
1) Alvaro Morata: Atletico Madrid to Juventus – £18m
Two loans in one here. Morata moved to Juve for the 2021-21 season for €10million with the Old Lady retaining the option to buy the striker for £34million or borrow him again for another season for the same price as the first. The much-travelled forward scored 20 goals in all competitions last term and is on seven so far this season which has piqued Barcelona’s interest.
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