Most Expensive Buyout Clauses in Football

Buyout clauses are that part of the contract that says ‘no, you can’t touch our man.’

In the football world, the buyout (or release) clause skyrockets after the record-breaking buyout of Neymar to Paris Saint Germain. His buyout amounted to €222 million.

If you are meaning to ask what is Lionel Messi’s buyout clause, well, it’s in the tune of roughly €727.8 million. He will be playing for Barcelona through 2021.

Neymar and Messi are not the only football players with astonishing buyout clauses, though. 

Here are other players with expensive buyout clauses in football.

Ousmane Dembélé, Philip Coutinho | €400 million

Neymar left a spot that is sure hard to replace. And so Barcelona started filling up the hole by acquiring Dembélé. The 20-year-old French player has one of the most expensive buyout clauses now.

Coutinho has been an impressive player on the turf. So Barcelona is doing everything in keeping him in the club.

Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Dani Ceballos, James Rodriguez, Gerard Pique | €500 Million

Kroos is a crucial man in Real Madrid’s lineup, sharing the same buyout clause with his teammates, Modric, Rodriguez, and Ceballos.

If Kroos is responsible for balancing the team, Modric’s main role is orchestrating an attack particularly after retrieving the ball. Modric connects the defence and the attack. Modric is also a Ballon d’Or winner. 

Ceballos has yet to prove his worth. The midfielder is known for his excellent performance while on his previous club, Real Betis.

Rodriguez is currently on loan to Bayern Munich. He hasn’t had the opportunities playing for Real Madrid yet, but he still belongs to the club.

Pique, on the other hand, is a seasoned defender that landed him the high buyout clause.

Lionel Messi, Marco Asensio, Isco | €700 million

Messi is doing Messi—with his five Ballon d’Ors and 523 goals out of 602 matches. Enough said.

Asensio is another promising 21-year-older (same with Ceballos) in the list. As early as now, he is a prominent feature in Real Madrid’s attacking line.

Sceptics compare Isco with the playing style of Zinedine Zidane. He may not be always on the starting lineup but when he does play, he delivers a convincing performance that earned the trust of the club’s manager.

Antoine Griezmann | €800 million

Barcelona is depending on its left-footed forward, along with other football superstars in the club of course. He was a team player and has an eye for goal.

Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale, Benzema | €1 billion

People would speculate why Ronaldo has a bigger buyout clause than Messi. But one has to wonder why Gareth Bale and Benzema have bigger buyouts as well.

Bale’s transfer from Tottenham Spurs to Real Madrid was the predecessor to Neymar’s record. Bale’s transfer was valued at €100 million. Indeed, he was Real Madrid’s prized possession.

Benzema has a solid 2018-19 performance. He scored a total of 21 goals at La Liga. He was the top choice striker too.

Going back to Ronaldo, he was Real Madrid’s top scorer. With him on the club, the Los Blancos was able to win all the possible titles there are. He was signed in 2009.

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Messi and Ronaldo truly deserved their buyout clauses. But what about the others? Let us know your thoughts.

football players booed by own fans granit xhaka arsenal

8 Football Players Who Were Booed by Their Own Fans

With Piers Morgan calling it a ‘disgrace,’ Granit Xhaka was under fire as he told the Arsenal fans to ‘f*** off’ following the crowd’s booing. Unai Emergy was firm in saying that Xhaka is ‘wrong’ for doing so.

The fans booed Xhaka after it took some time for Xhaka to get out of the field after a call for substitution. He was subbed due to his lacklustre performance.

As the booing got stronger, he cupped his ear, removed his shirt, ignored Emery’s handshake, said the words and storm through the tunnel.

As a captain, the reactions of the fans, as well as the Twitterverse, were consistently against him. 

Xhaka was not the first to be booed by their owns, however.

Here are football players who received the same fate.

Jorginho (Chelsea)

While substituting Ross Barkley in a Europa League’s match against Malmo, Jorginho was booed heavily by Chelsea diehards as he approached the field. 

Although it was considered the Maurizio Sarri was behind the dislike, the fans were actually hating on Jorginho’s style of play. Other than his sideways pass, fans noted that Jorginho offers little to no excitement while playing on the field.

Gareth Bale (Real Madrid)

Bale has a string of titles and honours on his name. He may be known for his acrobatic goals. However, he struggled in one aspect: real consistency. 

In a 1-0 home defeat in a match against Barcelona, Bale was substituted in the 61st-minute mark and prompted a loud booing from the fans. 

Fernando Torres (Chelsea)

Torres has earned boos from both Chelsea faithful and that of the opponents’ supporters. His dire performance following a big-money move was behind the booing. In 172 appearances, Torrest has only netted 45 goals.

On his 100th club appearance against Swansea, Torres received relentless booing from the crowd. The crowd also went wild when Demba Ba substituted for him in the last 10 minutes of the game.

Emmanuel Eboue (Arsenal)

Eboue was booed by the Arsenal during a Premier League match against Wigan. Arsenal was leading with 1-0, but the then head coach, Arsene Wenger decided to substitute for Eboue in the last 10 minutes of the game.

Saying that he did bad is an understatement. He tackled a teammate and gave the ball away twice. Wenger pulled him off after 9 minutes of action in the field amidst the caterwauling boos.

Rio Ferdinand (Manchester United)

Ferdinand was the subject of the fans’ ridicule during the 2005 preseason friendly games. He was the star player then but was caught meeting up with Peter Kenyon, chief executive to Chelsea.

The fans concluded that Ferdinand was cooking up a move to another club. The fact that he stalled the negotiations between the Red Devils and him despite the £100,000 weekly offer.

Hossam Ghaly (Tottenham)

In May 2007, Ghaly subbed for Steed Malbranque as he sustained an injury. The substitution happened during the first half and on the second half, Ghaly was substituted for someone else. Martin Jol, the former manager of Tottenham, was not satisfied with his performance.

Ghaly took it heavily, ripping his shirt as he was getting off the pitch. He even flung it in front of Jol. The crowd immediately went into a booing frenzy. Every time he plays on the pitch since then, the fans would greet him with resounding boos.

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For you, which football player received the loudest, most cringe-worthy booing? Let us know.

Concussion in Football: What Needs to Change

No football fan could unsee Tottenham Hotspur’s Jan Vertonghen wobbling and retching on one side of the pitch following a collision with Toby Alderwiereld, his teammate.

Vertonghen initially fell to the ground, slammed his face into the turf. His nose also bled moments after.

However, after three minutes of assessment, he was back in the game for a few minutes only to be escorted back to the tunnel.

What happened to Vertonghen is a medical scare no one should witness. But everyone did, raising questions on the efficiency of concussion protocols. It also irks the fans who criticised how the situation was handled.

Medical team to the Spurs, however, claimed that they indeed followed the protocols. It was announced right after that the Belgian player was not suffering a concussion.

Why these protocols are established in the first place? Are they being followed diligently or not?

‘Worst concussion protocols in the world’

Chris Nowinski, co-founder and CEO to the Concussion Legacy Foundation, pointed out three things. These are 1) the worst concussion protocols, 2) the archaic substitution rules and 3) the apparent disregard of the clinical care for concussion. 

If there was no perceived lack of concussion protocols, the medical scare that Vertonghen should not have happened.

Also, in improving concussion protocols, consider these options.

Replays for concussion signs

The medical team should be allowed to request replays if the signs of concussions are present.

FIFA outlines a list of visible signs of concussion including

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Lying motionless for 5 seconds or more
  • Confusion or disorientation
  • Vacant look
  • Incoordination  
  • Tonic posturing
  • Impact seizure
  • Ataxia

The Football Association (FA) also mentions other player-reported signs to consider such as severe neck pain, repeated vomiting, double vision, tingling or burning in arms and legs, and unusual behaviour change.

The player must be immediately removed from the field for further assessment. FIFA also requires that if these mandatory signs are present, the player must not be permitted to return to the game.

Temporary (10-minute) substitution

On October 23, 2019, the International Football Association Board (IFAB) will discuss the possibility of extending temporary substitution. In this way, the medical team would have enough time to assess the severity of the concussion, if there’s one. 

The current concussion assessment allotment is three minutes.

Within the 10-minute window, medical substitution should be allowed. Otherwise, the team would have to play ten versus 11.

Dr Edwin Goedhart, Dutch Football Federation’s sports medicine head, on the other hand, considers the combination of three and ten-minute assessments. Now all concussion would need a full 10 minutes to evaluate.

To seek a second opinion, there must be an outside medical team on standby to assist the club’s medical staff.

Educating team physicians, coaches and players

Screening all players for baseline tests is vital in determining whether a concussion happens during the game. This will serve as a comparative basis.

More importantly, the team physicians, as well as the coaches and players themselves, must be educated about concussion, its consequences, and what must be done when someone experienced it.

This is crucial today especially after a landmark study proved the link between dementia and death among football players.

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As a fan, how would you want to contribute to improving football concussion protocols? Please let us know.