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The ten biggest transfer flops this millennium



Transfer, transfer flop, transfer market, FC Bayern Munich, transfer fee

The winter transfer window in the Bundesliga opens on January 2nd. FC Bayern Munich should beware of renewed flops on the transfer market in order to finally be able to attack again in the Champions League after the treble win in 2020. SPOX shows the top 10 transfer flops of FC Bayern in this millennium.

FC Bayern Munich will have to be active again on the transfer market in the upcoming winter transfer window. A replacement for the injured Manuel Neuer should come. In addition, FCB would have to bring in successors should Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting or Benjamin Pavard leave the club.

The Bavarians have already pulled many top transfers out of a hat. But with some they also made a lot of mistakes. A transfer rivet even continues to this day. The German record champion has invested almost 130 million euros in the following top 10 Bayern transfer flops since 2000.

Renato Sanches (35 million euros)

In 2016, FC Bayern transferred a whopping 35 million euros to Benfica. However, the shooting star at the time was not able to assert himself with the record champions.

A loan to Swansea City followed, but the Portuguese flopped there too. In 2019 he was then sold to OSC Lille for 20 million euros. There he thrived and was a key player in the 2021 champions team.

After an equally strong 2021/21 season, Paris Saint-Germain snapped up the Portuguese’s services. There he did not get beyond the role of the rotation player.

Breno (12 million euros)

Breno came from Sao Paulo in 2008 as a big talent for €12m. He kept struggling with injuries at Bayern and was temporarily loaned out to 1. FC Nuremberg.

Then in 2011 the low point: Under the influence of alcohol, Breno set fire to his own house. FC Bayern paid the bail, but the Brazilian still had to go to prison the following year. Shortly after his prison sentence, he went back home.

Sinan Kurt (3 million euros)

Sinan Kurt moved from Gladbach to Bayern in 2014 after a week-long transfer gamble. FC Bayern transferred three million for Kurt, who had not played a minute in the Bundesliga at the time.

In Munich, he only caused a stir off the field and after two unsuccessful years was sold to Hertha BSC for 500,000 euros. Things didn’t go well in Berlin either and he changed clubs frequently from then on.

After WSG Wattens, SV Straelen and FC Nitra, he has been without a club since the summer of 2021. Now he has found a new club: During the winter break, Kurt will join the Turkish fourth division club Karaman FK.

Danijel Pranjic (7.7 million euros)

Danijel Pranjic moved to Säbener Straße in 2009 as Louis van Gaal’s dream player. Bayern paid almost eight million euros for Pranjic, but the Croatian regularly only took a seat on the bench.

The Croatian’s contract with Bayern expired in 2012 and he joined Benfica on a free transfer after a disappointing spell in Munich. He then played for a few other clubs before ending his career in Cyprus in 2021.

Click here for the career interview with Danijel Pranjic!

Mario Götze (37 million euros)

Probably the most expensive misunderstanding in Bayern’s transfer history is Mario Götze. In 2013, the record champions pulled the exit clause in Götze’s contract with Borussia Dortmund and transferred 37 million euros to BVB. The then coach Pep Guardiola would rather have signed Neymar instead of Götze.

Due to many injuries, he hardly played a role later and switched back to BVB in 2016 for 22 million euros. Back in Dortmund, he never got close to his old form.

In 2020 he joined PSV Eindhoven where he fought his way back. In top personal form, he joined Eintracht Frankfurt last summer, where he was part of a historic first half of the Champions League and will feature in the knockout stage of the premier class in 2023.

The 2014 World Cup winner also fought his way back into the German national team and took part in the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. But after two substitutions, he could not spread his magical sparks again. As is well known, Germany was eliminated in the group phase.

Marcell Jansen (14 million euros)

Marcell Jansen came to Munich in 2007 as a great talent from Borussia Mönchengladbach. The signing was worth 14 million euros for Bayern, but Jansen was not able to convince much despite playing regularly.

A year later, the left-back was handed over again. Hamburger SV paid Bayern eight million for Jansen, where he ended his career and became an official. Initially, he acted as a member of the supervisory board. With a short break in 2021, he has been President of HSV since 2019 and is working with the Hanseatic League on the rise of the former Bundesliga dinosaur.

Curious: When he was appointed to the supervisory board in 2018, he ended his career and has since played for the third team of Hamburger SV in the Oberliga.

Jan Schlaudraff (1.2 million euros)

Like Jansen, Jan Schlaudraff came in 2007. Bayern “only” spent 1.2 million on the attacker from Alemannia Aachen. But he couldn’t get past Miroslav Klose, Luca Toni and Lukas Podolski. It was enough for just eight brief appearances (no goals).

His greatest success at Bayern was seven goals in a friendly against SV Darmstadt 98. After a disappointing year with the record champions, he was still profitably sold to Hannover 96 for 2 million, for whom he played for seven years.

In 2015 Schlaudraff ended his career at 96. In 2019 he joined the Hanoverians as an official. But his time as sports director didn’t even last a full year. Since the beginning of 2022, he has been making a second official attempt as sports manager at the Austrian second division club SKN St. Pölten.

Torsten Frings (9.25 million euros)

Torsten Frings came from Borussia Dortmund in 2004 as Felix Magath’s dream player for 9.25 million. Although he was set for Bayern, he never really warmed to the club and fled again a year later.

For five million euros it went to ex-club Werder Bremen, where he had already played before his stay in Dortmund. He spent six years there and ended his career after two seasons in the MLS.

After retiring in 2013, he tried his hand at several coaching positions. First as an assistant coach at Werders Reserve, then with the pros under Viktor Skripnik. In December 2016 he joined SV Darmstadt 98, but was released after almost a year. His start in 2020 at SV Meppen also failed after less than a year. He is currently unemployed.

Jan Kirchhoff (free transfer)

After the central defender’s contract with Mainz 05 expired in 2013, Jan Kirchhoff had to wait half a league to secure his services. He opted for FC Bayern, but that was the start of his career downslide.

After only one first half of the season, he was loaned to FC Schalke 04 for a year and a half. After another first series at FCB, he was then sold to AFC Sunderland for one million in 2016. After that he was even without a club twice for a short time and ended his career in the summer of 2021 after two years at KFC Uerdingen. Since then he has worked as an assistant coach in the youth department of VfB Stuttgart.

Click here for the career interview with Jan Kirchhoff!

Bouna Sarr (8 million euros)

Bouna Sarr came as a surprise on Deadline Day in summer 2020 for eight million euros from Olympique Marseille. Since then he has had almost exclusively short assignments from the bench and has not been able to convince in these. The people of Munich have been trying to sell it for a year now.

His strong performances at the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations, which he won with Senegal, did not change that. After knee surgery, he missed the entire first half of the 2022/23 season and thus also missed participation in the World Cup in Qatar, where he could have advertised again.

In the coming winter transfer window, Sarr is up for sale again with the Munich team. His current contract runs until 2024.