Real Madrid has been the numero uno of football in terms of signing the best players for over 70 years. But too many great names in a single team always results in a few unfair transfers to other clubs. In the Florentino Perez era, many good players have been pushed out mercilessly. In this article, we will look at five players Real Madrid should not have released.
#5 Theo Hernandez
It is still baffling that Real Madrid released Theo Hernandez despite having no back-up for Marcelo. Real Madrid should not have released him as he was young, fast and had every attribute that a modern full-back must possess. Real Madrid’s loss was AC Milan’s gain as Hernandez showed his full range in 20/21 and almost helped AC Milan to a Serie A title.
In 2017, Real Madrid bought Theo for 24 million Euros and released him two years later for 20 million Euros. Weirdly, Theo was never given enough time to prove his talent which shows Madrid’s knee jerk strategy in the transfer market.
#4 Clarence Seedorf
The only player to win UCL with three different clubs, Seedorf spent three glorious season at Madrid from 1996 to 1999. In the summer of 99′, Madrid decided to sell him to Inter Milan, supposedly due to the manager’s wish.
After two seasons at Inter Milan, Seedorf moved to rivals AC Milan and formed a legendary midfield trio with Pirlo and Gattuso. Seedorf won two Champions League titles with AC Milan and retired as one of the greatest midfielders of all time. Real Madrid struggled for a strong presence in the midfield for much of the galacticos era and Seedorf could have filled that void.
#3 Wesley Sneijder
In the summer of 2007, Real Madrid bought Sneijder for a huge sum and he did not disappoint in his first season at Madrid. A winner against Atletico was followed by several memorable goals and many backed him to become a Madrid legend. However, an injury before the start of the 2008-09 season shortened his impact and he was sold to Inter in 2009.
Sneijder was a revelation in his first season at Inter Milan, helping them win a continental treble. Injuries troubled him again and he dropped out of the spotlight slowly. Madrid should not have released him as his playmaking abilities could have come in handy for a team struggling for creativity.
#2 Arjen Robben
Another Dutchman who did not last long at Madrid, Robben did find greener pastures elsewhere. In 2007, Real Madrid bought him from Chelsea and he enjoyed two moderately successful seasons. He departed in 2009 after Madrid broke the bank to buy Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka and Benzema.
He became a legend at Bayern Munich and scored the winner in the 2013 Champions League final. Madrid could have benefitted from his pace and lethal left foot. Real could have also avoided spending huge money for Di Maria, who was the eventual replacement for Robben,
#1 Samuel Eto’o
The transfer of Eto’o from Real Madrid to Mallorca in 2000 was another weird move that had blunder written all over it. Eto’o came to Madrid as a 16-year-old but played just seven games for Real as he was loaned to Leganes, Espanyol and Mallorca. After two good seasons at Mallorca, Eto’o moved to Barcelona and enjoyed a terrific five-year spell.
Real Madrid should not have released him as he went on to score two goals in two UCL final triumphs for arch-rivals Barcelona. He is the only player to win consecutive continental trebles with two different clubs, Barcelona and Inter Milan.