Mesut Ozil: Real Madrid to Arsenal - £42.5m
The young German is destined for great things with Arsenal, already being hailed as the messiah in Arsenal's quest to return to the top after their well-publicised downfall. But the pressure being placed in his shoulders is huge, and he'll have the eyes of the Premier League firmly on him in the future over whether he succeeds with the Gunners, or joins an ever-lengthening list of expensive flops.
Sergio Aguero: Atletico Madrid to Manchester City - £38m
The Argentinian maestro has backed up City’s hefty outlay on him, with his highlight no doubt being the last-gasp goal at the Etihad to secure the 2011-12 Premier League title against QPR on the final day of the season. He has dazzled fans at times, although he has also suffered with the odd injury here and there, and perhaps the addition of Stevan Jovetic and Alvaro Negredo to Aguero and Edin Dzeko may see the 25-year-old rotated in order to justify the £20m-plus addition of Jovetic and £16.4m signing of Negredo.
Robinho: Real Madrid to Manchester City - £32.5m
Robinho started off his career in Manchester showing some of the promise that took him to Spain in the first place, but it soon started a rapid descent downhill, and the arrival of Italian manager Roberto Mancini did him very little favours. An opening season haul on 15 goals in 41 games was followed by just a single goal the following season, and he was soon backing his bags and heading back to his native Brazil to join Santos on-loan. There was talk of a future in the Premier League for the forward, but that soon disappeared when he joined AC Milan for £15m, earning a reputation as the most-expensive flop when it comes to foreign signings.
Willian: Anzhi Makhachkala to Chelsea - £32m
Now this move is an interesting one (perhaps not for Spurs fans) with Chelsea’s already extensive options in their midfield. Having Eden Hazard, Oscar, Juan Mata, Kevin De Bruyne and Andre Schurrler to pick from seemingly wasn’t enough for Jose Mourinho, as he made a late hijacking for Tottenham’s move for Willian. The 25-year-old Brazilian shot off from Spurs after completing a medical to sign for the Blues, but his rather pricey transfer will mean he will need to feature regularly if fans at Stamford Bridge are to take him in as one of their own.
Andriy Shevchenko: AC Milan to Chelsea - £30.8m
A prime example of not living up to your price tag. At the time, Shevchenko was one of the in-form strikers in world football, with few questioning Chelsea’s move for the Ukrainian. However, he had appeared to lose half-a-yard in pace as well as about 10 yards of confidence – déjà vu these days? – and he eventually returned to the Italian club on-loan to try and regain some form. A fairly modest 22 goals in 77 appearances for the Blues eventually saw him leave to return to his childhood club Dynamo Kiev for free.
Fernandinho: Shakhtar Donetsk to Manchester City £30m
The Premier League runners-up marquee signing (in terms of price) of this summer has made a solid, if unspectacular start to his City career. Brought in to replace the hole Nigel de Jong created when he left the club last summer, albeit a more creative version, though the jury remains out on the Brazilian midfielder until he has had a real chance to adapt to life in the Premier League.
Erik Lamela: Roma to Tottenham £30m if add-ons are met
The replacement for the most expensive player in world football. No pressure then, Erik. The 21-year-old moved to White Hart Lane after a two-year spell with the Italian club in which he scored 21 goals in 66 appearances. Having only made his debut in Spurs’ last game against Arsenal when he came off the bench, Lamela showed enough to suggest the potential is there, but at such a young age he will take time to develop. Regardless, this move could prove to be a hugely successful one for the north London club.
Juan Sebastian Veron: Lazio to Manchester United - £28.1m
The Argentinian was meant to transform the United midfield, and alongside regulars Paul Scholes and Roy Keane, give Sir Alex Ferguson’s side a bite in midfield that at the time they were lacking. Veron failed to settle in England though, and despite showing moments of brilliance that his talent was undoubtedly there, he failed to make the impact many had hoped. He eventually joined Chelsea for £15m after two unsuccessful seasons at Old Trafford, where he would go on to prove another expensive failure before returning to Italy.
Edin Dzeko: Wolfsburg to Manchester City - £27m
Dzeko arrived at City with a reputation as a natural goalscorer, although there was some criticism over the hefty fee considering he had much to prove. Despite showing he had an eye for a goal, Roberto Mancini’s reluctance to play the Serbian – instead starting Sergio Aguero and refusing to admit defeat until the very end with Mario Balotelli – meant he saw his chances severely limited. He had been linked with a move away, but the arrival of Manuel Pellegrini appears to have given him one last chance to be a City success – a goal and assist to open his 2013-14 campaign has put him on the right track.
Didier Drogba: Marseille to Chelsea - £24m
The talismanic Chelsea striker is possibly the biggest success on this list, and he also comes in at the cheapest. Often sublime, sometimes controversial, the Ivorian was prominent in Chelsea’s successful runs to the Premier League successes in 2004-05, 2005-06 and 2009-10, the four FA Cups he picked up and the Champions League triumph two years ago. He remains a Blues favourite, and probably a Stamford Bridge great, and departed the club after eight seasons in which he scored 157 goals in 341 appearances.