Friday, May 31, 2013

My All Time FC Porto XI Transfer Deals

Porto are definitely very nimble on their feet in the transfer market, leaving many of their more illustrious (and staid) peers in the shade.Their model is sustainable, but involves rigor and professionalism in all the areas of the club. From finance, to scouting. The success of FC Porto is also intertwined with the three decades of leadership of its president.

Here is my first eleven of the best deals done by them...

GK: Vitor Baia 

Subject of a hugely controversial transfer ,the portuguese keeper joined barcelona in 1996. However he failed to adopt to the Catalan way of life and went back to Porto on loan in the summer. His transfer fee is still a question.

RB; Paulo Ferreira – Signed £0/ Sold £13.2million

Ferreira was signed by Porto from Vitoria de Setubal after impressing in the Portuguese domestic league. Mourinho transformed him into an attacking full back, having previously been a right midfielder. He had an exceptional two seasons at Porto, winning a treble in his first and a league and Champions League double in his second. He joined Carvalho and Mourinho at Chelsea at the start of the 2004/05 season.

Ricardo Carvalho – Signed £0/ Sold £20million

Carvalho was signed for Porto’s youth team at the age of 17. He broke into the first team in 2001/02 and went on to play 115 times for the club winning 3 league titles, a UEFA Cup and a Champions League in the process. During the Champions League winning season, Carvalho was chased by several top clubs across Europe. In the end it was Roman Abramovich’s Chelsea who had just hired Jose Mourinho, Carvalho’s manager at Porto, who stumped up the cash to take him to Stamford Bridge.

Pepe – Signed £750,000 plus Tonel, Evandro and Antonielton Ferreira/ Sold £25million

After Mourinho left, Porto’s first signing was youngster Pepe in an extremely part exchange deal. He had a breakthrough season in 2005/06, helping the club win back to back domestic titles and being the leader in Co Adriaanse’s 3-4-3 formation, really coming of age. In 2007, Real Madrid came calling, seeing his clear potential and paid £25million for Pepe’s services. It was another huge profit for the Portuguese club.

Aly Cissokho – Signed £200,000/ Sold £12million

Porto signed Cissokho in 2009 for a small fee of £200,000 after he impressed for Vitoria de Setubal. He won a league and cup double in his six months at Porto and impressed during their run in the Champions League that season, catching the eye of AC Milan and Lyon in the process. Milan had agreed a deal to take Cissokho to the San Siro but it fell through due to a medical. A month later, Lyon matched Milan’s bid and purchased Cissokho. Porto made an impressive £11.8million profit on him in six months.

Ricardo Quaresma – Signed £4million (playing rights evaluated in Deco deal)/ Sold £14.75million plus Pele


Often referred to as the ‘biggest waste of talent’ of the last decade, Ricardo Quaresma had his best spell of his career at Porto. The only thing bigger than Quaresma’s talent was his ego, which was his eventual downfall. He didn’t get on with then Barcelona manager Frank Rijkaard and Porto saw an opportunity to do some business, gaining his services as their key man Deco moved in the opposite direction. After 148 appearances in Portugal, he moved to Inter Milan for £14.75million plus young midfielder Pele (yes, Pele).

 Deco – Signed £100,000/ Sold £12.5million plus Ricardo Quaresma

Deco was arguably Porto’s most impressive player in the Champions League winning season. Signed after impressing on loan at Salgueiros the previous season, Deco went onto make 226 appearance for Porto and was a world class attacking midfielder who loved to score and make goals. He eventually switched to Barcelona for £12.5million plus Ricardo Quaresma after talks between him and his old manager Mourinho broke down.

Raul Meireles – Signed £0/ Sold £11.5million

Meireles was signed at the same time as Pepe, the season after Mourinho left and had an extremely impressive six years at the club. He made 191 appearances for Porto, scoring 19 and assisting 30 goals. He won three league titles and two cups for the club until Liverpool came calling in 2010, paying £11.5million for his services.

Lisandro Lopez – Signed £2million/ Sold £20million

Lisandro moved alongside Lucho from River plate in 2005 in which turned out to be one of the best pieces of business in the club’s history. Coincidentally, they also left the club at the same time as each other. Lisandro also won those four titles at the club, making 143 appearances and scoring an impressive 63 goals. He was sold to Lyon to replace Karim Benzema at ten times the amount they purchased him for.

Hulk – Signed £15million (over three years)/ Sold £39.5million

The most eye-catching sale of the lot was the most recent when Zenit purchased the charismatic Brazilian for an almighty £39.5million in the summer of 2012. He is known as Hulk due to his likeness to a comic book character and initially started his career in Japan until Porto’s scouts spotted him. Hulk scored 78 goals for Porto in 169 appearances, forging a magnificent partnership with Falcao for a couple of years.

Radamel Falcao – Signed £3million plus Mario Bolatti/ Sold £33million


Falcao had an incredible goalscoring record in his two season at Porto after signing from River Plate in 2009 to replace the outgoing Lisandro. Falcao won a league title and a Europa League at the club, scoring an incredible 72 goals in 87 appearances. He set a new goalscoring record in the Europa League of 17 goals in a single tournament in 2010/11 too. He made his name as one of the deadliest strikers in Europe and in 2011 Atletico Madrid splashed out over £30million on him.

There are Porto’s major transfer profits over the last ten years and they are mightily impressive. Added to the players, they have been able to make a profit on their managers too. Chelsea have paid compensation for two of their managers in the last twenty years, They paid £1.7million in compensation for Jose Mourinho in 2004 and a hefty £13.3million for treble winning manager Andre Villas Boas who had an undeafeated season at the club. ‘AVB’ as he is known in England was of course sacked by Chelsea after just nine months in charge which makes this deal all the more remarkable.

In the current crop of players there are sure to be some high profile sales in the next summer and years to come. For example, James Rodriguez was signed for £4million in 2010 and has been linked with moves all across Europe including Manchester United who are reportedly willing to pay £30million for him. Joao Moutinho, who almost moved to Tottenham Hotspur for £25million last summer, was signed for £8.5million in 2010. They could make another hefty profit on him. Jackson Martinez was signed for £8million this summer and has had an extremely impressive first season at Porto, expect him to be moved on one day for a massive profit too. Other players who fall into the same bracket include young Belgian Steven Defour, French defender Eliaquim Mangala, Brazilian winger Kelvin and Brazilian full backs Danilo and Alex Sandro.

 Thanks be to T. Scott

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