90min
Transfers

2021 summer transfers you may have missed

Jamie Spencer
Spurs & Brighton target Nicolas Gonzalez has joined Fiorentina for €27m
Spurs & Brighton target Nicolas Gonzalez has joined Fiorentina for €27m / Stuart Franklin/Getty Images
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Transfers can sometimes fly under the radar, particularly if you are focused on the Premier League but clubs in Germany, Spain, France, Portugal and others making deals, even for famous players.

Here’s a look at a number of transfers of note you have missed this summer…


1. Nicolas Gonzalez to Fiorentina (€27m)

Nicolas Gonzalez won the Copa America with Argentina this summer
Nicolas Gonzalez won the Copa America with Argentina this summer / Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

Injury limited Nicolas Gonzalez to only 15 league appearances for Stuttgart last season, but he did go to the Copa America with a triumphant Argentina this summer.

The 23-year-old - who was also linked with Tottenham and Brighton - had earlier impressed in 2.Bundesliga and his relative lack of top flight experience didn’t stop Fiorentina from paying a big fee.

2. Omar Richards to Bayern Munich (free)

Omar Richards has jumped from Reading to Bayern Munich
Omar Richards has jumped from Reading to Bayern Munich / Alexandra Beier/Getty Images

Bayern Munich signed Omar Richards to a long-term contract when his Reading deal expired in June, which sees the left-back trade the Championship for the Champions League.

Richards has been handed the number three shirt at the Allianz Arena, suggesting he will be given a significant first-team role in competition with Alphonso Davies.

3. Florian Thauvin to Tigres (free)

Ex-Newcastle winger Florian Thauvin upped sticks to Mexico
Ex-Newcastle winger Florian Thauvin upped sticks to Mexico / Jam Media/Getty Images

Half a season at Newcastle was an unfortunate blip and no more on the record of French winger Florian Thauvin, who starred at Marseille ever since he returned to the club in 2016.

But Thauvin now takes on a new challenge altogether, swapping the familiarity of his native France for a brand new continent, joining former international colleague Andre-Pierre Gignac at Tigres in Mexico.

4. Mario Balotelli to Adana Demirspor (free)

Mario Balotelli spent last season in Serie B
Mario Balotelli spent last season in Serie B / Jonathan Moscrop/Getty Images

Mario Balotelli spent last season playing Serie B football with Monza, making it his first season outside of a national top flight since he was a 15-year-old with first club Lumezzane.

Now, however, the Italian forward has joined Adana Demirspor, who have been promoted back to the Turkish Super Lig for 2021/22.

5. Britt Assombalonga to Adana Demirspor (free)

Britt Assombalonga is starting afresh in Turkey
Britt Assombalonga is starting afresh in Turkey / James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

Another striker to have joined Adana Demirspor this summer is Britt Assombalonga - who cost Middlesbrough a club record £15m in 2017 - following his release from the Riverside Stadium.

Although born in Kinshasa and a DR Congo international, the 28-year-old has lived all but a few months of his life in England and heading abroad represents a big new step.

6. Gerson to Marseille (€20m)

Gerson is back in Europe after joining Marseille
Gerson is back in Europe after joining Marseille / CLEMENT MAHOUDEAU/Getty Images

Marseille have paid big money to bring former Roma midfielder Gerson back to Europe, having left Italy in 2019 to join Flamengo, where he won the Copa Libertadores later that year.

At 24, Gerson is still yet to make his senior international debut for Brazil, but strong performances for an ambitious Marseille this season could force him into contention for the 2022 World Cup.

7. Mamadou Sakho to Montpellier (free)

Mamadou Sakho is back in France after eight years in England
Mamadou Sakho is back in France after eight years in England / Sam Bagnall - AMA/Getty Images

Mamadou Sakho cost Liverpool a sizeable £18m in 2013 and Crystal Palace around £26m in 2017, but now the centre-back has returned home to France.

The former Paris Saint-Germain captain has joined 2011/12 Ligue 1 champions Montpellier as a free agent following his release from Palace at the end of his contract.

8. Carles Alena to Getafe (€5m)

Barcelona accepted €5m for Carles Alena
Barcelona accepted €5m for Carles Alena / Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Carles Alena started the 2020/21 season wearing Barcelona’s iconic number six shirt, but now he has completed a permanent transfer to Getafe for around €5m.

His boyhood club retain a buyback clause and first refusal on any future offer, so it is not necessarily all over for him at Camp Nou. Barça are also entitled to 50% of the transfer fee if he is sold elsewhere.

9. Andre Silva to RB Leipzig (€23m)

Andre Silva got back to his best at Eintracht Frankfurt
Andre Silva got back to his best at Eintracht Frankfurt / Octavio Passos/Getty Images

45 goals in two season with Eintracht Frankfurt was enough to convince RB Leipzig to shell out more than €20m on Andre Silva, who has found his feet once more after a disappointing spell at AC Milan.

The 25-year-old Portugal international will be tasked with scoring the goals to get Leipzig closer to Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga after finishing second last season.

10. Kevin Strootman to Cagliari (loan)

Kevin Strootman was once a target for Man Utd
Kevin Strootman was once a target for Man Utd / Marco Canoniero/Getty Images

Louis van Gaal was determined to sign Dutch midfielder Kevin Strootman for Manchester United in 2014, interest which only stopped when the player suffered an ACL injury.

Strootman joined Marseille in 2018 and spent the second half of last season on loan at Genoa. He is stating in Serie A for 2021/22, having joined Cagliari on a season-long deal.

11. Patrick van Aanholt to Galatasaray (free)

Patrick van Aanholt has joined Galatasaray
Patrick van Aanholt has joined Galatasaray / Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Just over two months after his summer release from Crystal Palace was confirmed, Dutch left-back Patrick van Aanholt started his next chapter by joining Turkish giants Galatasaray.

Apart from a two-year loan at Vitesse Arnhem, the 30-year-old has exclusively played in England since he joined Chelsea’s youth academy at the age of 17.

12. Boulaye Dia to Villarreal (€15m)

Boulaye Dia traded Reims for Villarreal
Boulaye Dia traded Reims for Villarreal / Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Boulaye Dia’s goal record last season for Reims earned him the attention of West Ham, but it was Europa League winners Villarreal who won the €15m race for his signature.

24-year-old Dia will replace Carlos Bacca at El Madrigal and will have the opportunity to play in the Champions League football for the first time.

13. Kieran Gibbs to Inter Miami (free)

Kieran Gibbs has left English football to go to MLS
Kieran Gibbs has left English football to go to MLS / Visionhaus/Getty Images

You may remember the news from March that Kieran Gibbs was due to join MLS club Inter Miami when his contract with West Brom expired this summer. Well that has now happened.

The former Arsenal left-back officially joined his new team on 1 July, having not actually played for West Brom since January.

14. Mike Maignan to AC Milan (€15m)

Mike Maignan replaces Gianluigi Donnarumma in Milan
Mike Maignan replaces Gianluigi Donnarumma in Milan / Claudio Villa/Getty Images

With Gianluigi Donnarumma leaving AC Milan at the end of his contract and opting to sign with Paris Saint-Germain, the Rossoneri moved quick to snap up Mike Maignan as a replacement.

Trained by PSG as a youth player and Lille’s number one since 2017, Maignan won Ligue 1 last season and has every chance of being France’s long-term starter soon.

15. Konrad de la Fuente to Marseille (€3m)

Konrad de la Fuente is a product of La Masia
Konrad de la Fuente is a product of La Masia / Gualter Fatia/Getty Images

Florida-born Konrad de la Fuente only played three times for Barcelona’s first-team but has already played senior international football for the United States.

The winger was still a teenager until recently and Marseille considered €3m a gamble worth taking on a youngster with plenty of potential.

16. Kevin-Prince Boateng to Hertha (free)

Kevin-Prince Boateng has re-joined his boyhood club 14 years after he left
Kevin-Prince Boateng has re-joined his boyhood club 14 years after he left / Matthias Kern/Getty Images

Berlin-born Kevin-Prince Boateng has gone back to where it all began, joining boyhood club Hertha after leaving Serie B side Monza, where he was a teammate of Mario Balotelli last season.

Boateng joined Hertha’s youth ranks at the age of seven, was 18 when he made his first-team debut and was only 20 when he moved to Tottenham in 2007. Now 34, he is finally home again.

17. Mitchel Bakker to Bayer Leverkusen (€10m)

Mitchel Bakker has only stayed briefly at PSG
Mitchel Bakker has only stayed briefly at PSG / Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images

PSG poached Mitchel Bakker from Ajax when he was only 19. But despite opting to sell to Bayer Leverkusen for an initial €10m, the French giants retain a buy-back clause.

Even now, Bakker has only recently turned 21 and is a player whose development is worth following. He played 40 times in all competitions for PSG last season alone.

18. Carlos Bacca to Granada (free)

Carlos Bacca now plays for Granada
Carlos Bacca now plays for Granada / Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Colombian striker Carlos Bacca had an impressive goal record for Club Brugge, Sevilla, AC Milan and Villarreal between 2012 and 2018 and has now joined his fifth European club in Granada.

A bit of a late bloomer, Bacca will turn 35 just a few weeks into the new La Liga season and so this could be one of the last moves of his career.

19. John Lundstram to Rangers (free)

John Lundstram has moved north of the border to Scotland
John Lundstram has moved north of the border to Scotland / Nigel Roddis/Getty Images

John Lundstram was a must have for FPL players during his two years in the Premier League with Sheffield United. Following his release at Bramall Lane, the midfielder has moved to Scotland.

At Rangers, Lundstram will have the chance to play European football and challenge for domestic trophies under the management of fellow scouser Steven Gerrard.

20. Pau Lopez to Marseille (loan)

Paul Lopez will start afresh at Marseille
Paul Lopez will start afresh at Marseille / Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

Pau Lopez will have the chance to reignite his career on loan at Marseille, where veteran club captain and current number one Steve Mandanda turned 36 earlier this year.

The goalkeeper joined Roma in 2019 but didn’t have the best time in 2020/21 after starting the season on the bench and later getting injured.

21. Roberto Soldado to Levante (€500,000)

Ex-Spurs striker Roberto Soldado has a new club
Ex-Spurs striker Roberto Soldado has a new club / Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

A lot has happened in the career of Roberto Soldado since his failed move to Tottenham came to an end in 2015, but the now 36-year-old has arguably never rediscovered his best form.

Having starred for Valencia between 2010 and 2013, earning his big money move to Spurs off the back of his form there, Soldado is now back in his home city, but this time at local rivals Levante.

22. Joao Mario to Benfica (free)

Joao Mario signed for Benfica after leaving Inter
Joao Mario signed for Benfica after leaving Inter / Gualter Fatia/Getty Images

Joao Mario started his youth career at Porto, moved onto Sporting CP, where he made his professional breakthrough, and now completes his set of Portugal’s big three.

Mario was contracted to former club Inter for five years after a €45m transfer in the wake of Euro 2016. He also briefly played for West Ham during a 2018 loan.

23. Cengiz Under to Marseille (loan)

Cengiz Under is in France after spending last season at Leicester
Cengiz Under is in France after spending last season at Leicester / Octavio Passos/Getty Images

After struggling to make an impact on loan at Leicester last season, Cengiz Under will have another chance to try and rediscover his best form at Marseille this season instead.

He enjoyed a breakout season as a teenager at Istanbul Basaksehir in 2016/17 and then had a strong debut year at Roma, but he hasn’t been able to hit those levels since.

24. Justin Kluivert to Nice (loan)

Justin Kluivert has moved on again
Justin Kluivert has moved on again / Soccrates Images/Getty Images

Justin Kluivert only recently turned 22 but will be lining up for his fourth senior club this season after joining Nice on loan from parent club Roma. Ajax and RB Leipzig are the others.

Son of Dutch legend Patrick, the winger is yet to replicate his father’s success by the same age, although time is still on his side to have a decent career.

25. Stevan Jovetic to Hertha (free)

Stevan Jovetic has moved to Germany for the first time
Stevan Jovetic has moved to Germany for the first time / BSR Agency/Getty Images

An injury-ravaged career ever since a £22m transfer to Manchester City in 2013 has always limited Stevan Jovetic’s once enormous potential.

Having already played in England, Italy, Spain and France, the Montenegrin forward now completes his tour of Europe’s top five leagues by joining Bundesliga club Hertha.

26. Ryo Miyaichi to Yokohama F. Marinos (free)

Ryo Miyaichi was once a promising youngster at Arsenal
Ryo Miyaichi was once a promising youngster at Arsenal / Koji Watanabe/Getty Images

Once tipped for superstardom when he joined Arsenal soon after turning 2018, Japanese winger Ryo Miyaichi has returned home after spending the last 10 years in Europe.

His six seasons at cult German club St Pauli were ultimately ravaged by injury and Miyaichi will now hope a move to Yokohama F. Marinos in the J1 League can be a fresh start for him.

27. Lukas Nmecha to Wolfsburg (€12.8m)

Lukas Nmecha has left Man City to make it at Wolfsburg
Lukas Nmecha has left Man City to make it at Wolfsburg / JOHN MACDOUGALL/Getty Images

After a top season on loan with Anderlecht in 2020/21, Manchester City have cashed in on 22-year-old German talent Lukas Nmecha. He has joined Wolfsburg for up to £11m, a not insignificant sum, where he now wears the Bundesliga side’s number 10 shirt.

28. Matheus Cunha to Atletico Madrid (€26m)

Matheus Cunha
Matheus Cunha won an Olympic gold medal this summer / Abbie Parr/Getty Images

Matheus Cunha has been prolific for Brazil’s Under-23 team over the last couple of years, culminating in an Olympic gold medal this summer. He now has the chance to make a step up at club level after joining Atletico Madrid from Hertha Berlin.

29. Mattia Caldara to Venezia (loan)

Mattia Caldara will spent this season in Venice
Mattia Caldara will spent this season in Venice / Vincenzo Izzo/Getty Images

Mattia Caldara’s career hasn’t gone the way he would have hoped since a €35m transfer from Juventus to AC Milan in 2018 to replace Leonardo Bonucci at the latter. He now joins Venezia, who are back in Serie A for the first time since 2002, with a bankruptcy in between.

30. Luiz Araujo to Atlanta United (€10m)

Luiz Araujo has left Lille and headed to MLS
Luiz Araujo has left Lille and headed to MLS / PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA/Getty Images

After four years in France, Luiz Araujo has bid farewell to Lille after winning last season’s Ligue 1 title and is aiming to become the latest South American star to make an impact at Atlanta United in MLS. The Brazilian is a Designated Player for this season.

31. Kevin Gameiro to Strasbourg (free)

Kevin Gameiro has joined Strasbourg back in his native France
Kevin Gameiro has joined Strasbourg back in his native France / Xavier Laine/Getty Images

Former Sevilla and Atletico Madrid forward has returned to play in his native France for the first time since 2013 when he left Paris Saint-Germain. Now 34, he was released by Valencia at the end of last season and signed a two-year deal with Strasbourg as a free agent.

32. Adil Rami to Troyes (free)

Adil Rami played for Boavista last season
Adil Rami played for Boavista last season / Gualter Fatia/Getty Images

Adil Rami will turn 36 before the calendar year is out but he has joined the 10th club of his career this summer and has returned to France after spending the last two years at teams in Turkey, Russia and Portugal. He is now at Troyes, who were promoted to Ligue 1 last season.

33. Jens Petter Hauge to Eintracht Frankfurt (loan)

Jens Petter Hauge
Jens Petter Hauge is hoping for game time in Germany / Christian Kaspar-Bartke/Getty Images

Former teen prodigy Jens Petter Hauge has joined Eintracht Frankfurt on loan in the hope of getting more first-team action to aid his development. The Norway international is now 21 but only played 24 games for parent club Milan last season.

34. Marko Arnautovic to Bologna (€4m)

Marko Arnautovic is back in Europe from China
Marko Arnautovic is back in Europe from China / STR/Getty Images

After two years, 39 appearances and 20 goals in the Chinese Super League with the club formerly known as Shanghai SIPG, Marko Arnautovic is now plying his trade in Serie A with Bologna. He even scored on his first Serie A game since a loan at Inter over 10 years ago.

35. Merih Demiral to Atalanta (loan)

Merih Demiral is starting afresh at Atalanta
Merih Demiral is starting afresh at Atalanta / Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Merih Demiral has moved from Juventus to Atalanta on loan in the hope of replacing Cristian Romero in Bergamo after he joined Tottenham. Demiral was only a bit-part player for Juve last season but is highly-rated and this is the move that could kickstart his career.

36. Radja Nainggolan to Antwerp (free)

Radja Nainggolan was born in Antwerp
Radja Nainggolan was born in Antwerp / JAMES ARTHUR GEKIERE/Getty Images

Radja Nainggolan is now back where it all began after joining home-town club Antwerp. He hasn’t played at club level in his homeland since he was 17 and had spent his entire professional career in Italy until he accepted Antwerp’s offer this summer.


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