Over $50 million for Richarlison? Ronaldo plying his trade at Juve? And Buffon turning out for PSG? – here are five strange summer signings so far
1 – Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus
When the Portuguese superstar hinted that he would leave Real Madrid, moments after winning the Champions League in May, many thought his next move would be either a return to Manchester United, or a hop to Paris.
No one would have thought Juventus would be an attractive option for CR7, nor that the Bianconeri would have the money to sign him. It happened. Incredible, but true. The biggest transfer in Serie A since the other Ronaldo left Barcelona for Inter, back in 1998. Cristiano will now have the – relatively easy – task of winning the Serie A and the much tougher job of leading Juventus to the Champions League title. If it happens, he will be loved for an eternity.
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— JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) July 30, 2018
2 – Malcom to Barcelona
Roma announced the signing of Malcom – but the French forward man ended up at Barcelona. How is this possible? Well, he still hadn’t signed the contract, and Barcelona convinced Bordeaux to accept their offer instead. Then, Malcom played the part and signed for the Blaugrana.
After being chased by Inter for ages, then basically being a Roma player, the talented Brazilian will help Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi to continue their goalscoring records. Is it the right move for him? Only time will tell, but a less demanding club would probably have been a better next step for Malcom.
? Our latest arrival says hello to his new team-mates
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) July 26, 2018
3 – Richarlison to Everton
The 21-year-old Brazilian winger has joined Everton from Watford, after impressing overall with five league goals in 38 matches. Marco Silva brought him to Watford and then did the same to Everton. But the cost is bizarre, to say the least.
But that’s not news in today’s transfer market, especially in the Premier League. It’s more the fact that no bigger club properly went for Richarlison and that yes, he did do fairly well in his first season, but hasn’t scored in 2018, and surely hasn’t done well enough to cost five times as much just 12 months later.
4 – Paulinho to Guangzhou Evergrande
The Brazilian midfielder joined Barcelona just 12-months-ago, impressed, scoring nine league goals, only to return to China. Could it just be a big marketing move, with the agent having several economic interests? It could. What remains strange in any case is that the thirty-year-old could have remained in Spain after winning the double, and could have helped Barcelona to return to being great again in Europe. Instead, it will be Guangzhou time for him again.
5 – Gianluigi Buffon to Paris Saint Germain
Not bizarre as such, but who would have thought that Buffon would end his career with a club that isn’t Juventus? Impossible, looking back at his career. Yet, it happened. Because he wants another go at lifting the Champions League, and because the Bianconeri did not fully believe in him anymore.
All good things come to an end, and it was probably time for Buffon to end his playing career with Juve, but to see him in Ligue 1 will be shocking, at least initially. It will all make more sense if he really does win the Champions League with PSG.