As the most popular sport in the world, it is not that hard to see why there is so much fuss when a footballer changes clubs during a transfer window. This summer, and the whole of 2023 for that matter, saw some huge changes all around us, something that was also reflected in the world of football.
After the national leagues and cups have ended, and after Bayern Munich won UEFA Champions League and Sevilla winning the UEFA Europa League, the transfer craze was ready to begin. Some of the moves were pre-negotiated and bound to happen, while other transfers and new contracts that nobody expected took place.
The most popular piece of news appeared when rumors started to swirl about Messi leaving his dear FC Barcelona after decades in the club. This however did not occur but other famous names in the world of football did change clubs. The next season is going to be one of the most interesting ever, and not just because of the competitions and leagues being free and safe from coronavirus.
In this article, we will talk about the top football stars who changed clubs in 2023. If you want to find out more about the transfer market and the football world in general, make sure to visit sportni-portal.com for all the latest news and scores.
1. Luis Suarez – FC Barcelona to Atletico Madrid
Although he was linked to a move to Juventus in what would be his first Italian squad, the star number 9 of Barca for the last 6 years is moving to their second-biggest rival in Atletico. He scored 8 goals against his new team as a member of Barcelona and had 5 assists. The transfer is very low for today’s standards, as Atletico only paid Barcelona €6 million (£5.5m/$7m) for the Uruguayan star. Suarez has played a total of 283 games for the club across all competitions, and scored 198 goals in the process and winning 13 major trophies’.
2. Thiago Silva – Paris Saint Germain to Chelsea
The PSG defensive legend finally ended his long tenure with the French champion after 10 years, 22 major trophies, 204 games, and 9 goals. The Brazilian star was considered as one of the best central defenders over the last decade, and he will not defend the goal of Chelsea in the Premier League. It was a free transfer for the Blues, who scored big on one of the best defensive players in the current game. Although in his mid-thirties, he is still capable of great things on the pitch and is an important signing for the English club.
3. David Silva – Manchester City to Real Sociedad
After 10 years at Manchester City, the club legend decided it was finally time to leave the Etihad and go back to his homeland of Spain. Real Sociedad is his fourth Spanish Primera team after spending 7 seasons in Valencia to start his career, during which he was loaned to Eibar and Celta for 1 season apiece. For City, he played 436 games, scored 77 goals, had 140 assists, and won 13 major trophies. The 34-year-old midfielder will be a strong addition to Sociedad, and they got him on a free transfer.
4. Timo Werner – RB Leipzig to Chelsea
One of the most impactful transfers of the year comes in the form of the young German star in Timo Werner, who switched his RB Leipzig shirt for the famous blue Chelsea kit. The 24-year-old scored 95 goals for his former club and gave out 40 assists across 159 games. On June 18 of this year, Chelsea activated the £47.5 million release clause he had in Germany and signed him on a five-year contract. This way they locked down his skills for the foreseeable future and a bright career in England is guaranteed for the striker.
5. Leroy Sane – Manchester City to Bayern Munich
The champions of Germany and the whole of Europe got even stronger by signing Leroy Sane from City this summer. At only 24 years of age, Sane spent 4 seasons at Etihad but only two of them were injury-free. During his span with the famous English club, the young German plated 135 total games, scored 39 goals, and dished out 45 assists.
Considering the fact that he already played in Bundesliga with FC Schalke 04 and Bayer Leverkusen, scoring 12 Bundesliga goals and having 9 assist, a return to his home country will probably suit him well and do wonders for Bayern. The Bavarians signed him on a five-year contract for €45 million, with a potential of it being €60 million with add-ons.
6. Gareth Bale – Real Madrid to Tottenham Hotspur
The Gareth Bale saga of Real Madrid finally came to a sudden end when he agreed to return to his former club of Tottenham Spurs of North London. After spending a few seasons on the sidelines and barely getting any playing time under the great Zinedine Zidane, during which he made fun of the club and played a lot of golf, the 31-year-old Welsh striker is back where his career blossomed.
Although on a 1-year loan, he will probably never return to Santiago Bernabeu after how badly he was treated by the club and the fans. After 7 years at the club during which he played 251 games, scored 105 goals, dished 68 assists, and helped then win 15 major trophies including 4 UEFA Champions Leagues, he is back in England. During his first spell with the Spurs, Bale appeared in 203 matches, scored 56 goals, and assisted 58 times. He is now ready for another stint during which he will surely be a threat to any goalkeeper in the Premier League alongside Harry Kane and Son Heung-min. What an attacking trio that will be!
- Ivan Rakitic – FC Barcelona to Sevilla – 4-year contract worth €1.5 million (up to €9 million possible)
- Arturo Vidal – FC Barcelona to Inter Milan – 1-year contract worth €1 million
- Miralem Pjanic – Juventus F.C. to FC Barcelona – 4-year contract worth €60 million (up to €65)
- Alvaro Morata – Atletico Madrid to Juventus F.C. – 1-year loan worth €10 million