Giving Away Valuable Jewels Too Cheap: From Ronaldo Nazario To Philippe Coutinho, Inter Milan’s Long History Of Naive Transfer Decisions
Had Philippe Coutinho resisted the temptation of joining Barcelona, we probably wouldn’t have to have this conversation, but the Brazilian playmaker didn’t just move, he literally forced Liverpool’s hands, helping them make a profit of over €130million, 10 times what Inter received as payment when Coutinho joined the 18-time Premier league champions in 2013.
Over four years ago, after three seasons and two loan spells (Vasco de Gama, Espanyol) The Nerazzurri sold Coutinho to Liverpool for €13million, a moderate bargain given the math and technicalities of the transfer market back then.
Yet, Liverpool are just one of the many teams to have profited from Inter’s naïve approach to profitable deals.
History definitely has Ronaldo Nazario up there as one of Inter Milan’s biggest losses; the Iconic Brazilian forward joined the Serie-A outfit from Barcelona for €28 million, but an Injury-plagued spell in Milan forced the 2002 World Cup winner to leave the San Siro four years later
In August 2002, after a lengthy transfer tussle, Inter Milan let go and accepted Real Madrid’s €45 million offer for the services of the Brazilian magician.
Perhaps the Nerazzurri were fed up and lost faith in O Fenomeno, as a result of his injuries, but letting go of the deadliest 9 in modern football, is a decision that probably still hunts them till date.
Between 1995-96, The San Siro outfit shipped Dennis Bergkamp (€11 million) and Roberto Carlos (€3 million) off the shores of Milan, much to the delight of Arsenal and Real Madrid
Of course, what followed, and the reputation these men forged for themselves, remains yet another indication, of just how Inter couldn’t care less about the value of their talented youngsters.
The very distinguished Andrea Pirlo, arguably the best holding midfielder in his generation, was barely 22 when the Nerazzurri sold him to City rivals AC Milan for €18 million, an absolute steal.
The Italian midfield maestro went on to enjoy a very colorful career away from the blue-black clouds of Milan, winning two Champions league titles with AC Milan, including multiple League and Cup triumphs with La Rossonero and Juventus much later.
So, in case you thought your club had done some bad transfers in the past, forgive them, and just remember the sins of the Nerazzurri, who sold the likes of Ronaldo, Pirlo, Dennis Bergkamp, Roberto Carlos and Philippe Coutinho, all way before they peaked.