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You can hear the loud sighs of dejection from Emirates when the North London club learnt that Gnabry is moving to Germany’s most decorated club. The boy who was deemed unfit for premier league by Tony Pulis, and played a handful of games for Arsenal, was bought by Werder Bremen last year. He went on to have a stellar season and has now moved to Bayern Munich. This is not the first instance where a player let go from premier league has reached the summit elsewhere. Here are top 5 players let go for cheap by premier League clubs, who went on to mark their own identity.
Stefan Savic arrived at Manchester City in 2011 as a 20-year-old, from a little known Serbian club. He found his place in the long list of unsuccessful signings by the city hierarchy and was shipped to Fiorentina in return for another defender. However, his time in Italy was eye catching and he was eventually bought by Atletico Madrid. Though his first season with the Spanish giants was sporadic, he managed to rack up more than 30 La Liga games for Atletico last season. Savic also earned the honour of being the first Montenegrin footballer to play in a Champions league final in the 21st century.
Top researchers are still busy studying how Everton managed to sell Fellaini for £27.5million to Manchester United. New researchers may have to join soon, if Everton successfully market Lukaku as a record-breaking striker. Hence it is a mystery how a club known for such shrewd deals managed to let go of a future German international for free.
Mustafi joined Everton in 2009 and after 3 uneventful years, was allowed to join Sampodria for free. However, his time at Valencia completely changed his destiny. A string of stellar performances for a Valencia team rapidly declining in stature, quickly won him recognition. A series of first team injuries meant that Mustafi had a vital role in the German National team. What followed was a transfer back to the premier league, with Valencia having their bank balance increased by a sizeable £35million or thereabouts.
If you ever felt selling De Bruyne and Lukaku are considered as Jose’s biggest blunders, think again. In 2007, the Portuguese manager made the decision to sell Robben to Madrid. Though the money pocketed for an injury prone winger seemed like a shrewd piece of business, the kind of impact Robben has left on the biggest stage must have left the West London club filled with a sense of regret.
The flying Dutchman had a decent 3 year spell with Chelsea, but it was coupled with many injuries. Robben then made the decision to join Madrid when the Galacticos came calling. Since his move, he has made a career filled with top glories and has grown into one of the best wingers in the game. At 30s, he still is a vital player for Bayern Munich, making darting runs and cut ins from the wing.
Before Pique went on to become a social media sensation, winning Champions Leagues, and marrying Shakira, he had a fleeting career in England. Signed from the famed La Masia academy, Pique – the defensive midfielder arrived on a free transfer to Manchester United. Rubbing his shoulders with legends like Van Nistelrooy, Giggs, and Scholes, Pique saw limited playing time due to the form of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic.
The prospect of returning back to homeland appealed Pique and he returned to Barcelona for a paltry transfer fee. Pique grew into his role and became an amazing centre-back at Barcelona. He has established himself an ever-present in the Barcelona first team and is also a firm fan favorite.
Boateng arrived to Manchester City in 2010 as a part of the revolutionary club overhaul by Sheikh Mansour. He played for Manchester City for a year and won the FA cup title with them. However, in 2011, Boateng wanted to move to Munich to increase his chances of being selected for the national team. City management obliged and Boateng made a switch to the German club.
Boateng’s value and skills have reached the sky after his move to Munich. Credited as one of the best ball playing center-backs, he is an integral member of the Bayern Munich squad and German National team. His current market value has rocketed up. City will be kicking themselves for their decision to let go of the German, considering how they have struggled with expensive defensive flops in Mangala, Otamendi, and Stones.