Sunday, December 5

The best value for money transfers in Europe in this transfer period | Transfer window

Denzel Dumfries, PSV to Inter (£ 10.6 million)

Internazionale are one of several European giants in financial trouble, with the board’s intention to recoup 80 million euros in transfer fees behind Antonio Conte’s decision to step down as head coach. The Italian champions sold Romelu Lukaku and Achraf Hakimi to raise funds and have recruited smartly, with Hakan Calhanoglu and Edin Dzeko coming free. Dutch winger Dumfries was one of the rising stars of Euro 2020 and seems to fit perfectly into the 3-5-2 counter attack system favored by new Inter coach Simone Inzaghi.

Gianluigi Donnarumma, Milan to PSG (free)

Paris Saint-Germain’s summer was akin to fantasy football, as big trophy-winning stars headed to the French capital. Lionel Messi, Sergio Ramos, Gini Wijnaldum, Nuno Mendes and Hakimi reinforced what is surely now the most formidable squad in football. Value for money is not a big concern for PSG, but Donnarumma, who is still 22 years old, may be their number one for a decade or more. Unlike some of his new teammates, the Euro 2020 standout goalkeeper is not yet earning big salaries – his starting salary of € 7 million a year is less than what he earned in Milan.

Eduardo Camavinga, Rennes to Real Madrid (£ 26.6 million)

PSG’s determination to keep their star-studded squad together was put to the test by Real Madrid’s ambitious belated effort to sign Kylian Mbappé. The move did not materialize, but Real Madrid made a move on the deadline, signing midfielder Camavinga from Rennes. As the youngest player on the 2020 Golden Boy finalist list, the 18-year-old arrives with a great reputation. Potentially available for free next summer, the France international is worth the modest fee right now. Comfortable as a containment midfielder or number 8, he can bring a new energy to the Real Madrid engine room.

Tino Livramento, Chelsea to Southampton (£ 5 million)

Chelsea undertook a big summer cleanup, selling enough fringe players and youth prospects to fund the £ 97.5 million fee paid to Inter by Lukaku. Right-back Livramento, signed for just £ 5 million with a £ 25 million buyback clause, is off to a great start to his career at Southampton and is already a fan favorite. “He has everything to be good: the body, the speed, the talent with the ball,” Ralph Hasenhüttl said of his new recruit, who has joined Dynel Simeu and Armando Broja (on loan) to trade Stamford Bridge for St Mary’s.

Jesper Lindstrøm, Brøndby to Frankfurt (£ 6 million)

After narrowly missing out on being in the top four last season, Eintracht Frankfurt have signed more than a dozen players this summer with a focus on future potential. His biggest investment was for Lindstrøm, a 21-year-old playmaker who recorded 10 goals and 10 assists for Brøndby to win his first Danish title since 2005. Lindstrøm has come straight into the starting lineup in Frankfurt and could score a skilled Scandinavian association with Norwegian winger Jens Petter Hauge on loan.

Jesper Lindstrøm (right) wants to make a big impression at Eintracht Frankfurt.
Jesper Lindstrøm (right) wants to make a big impression at Eintracht Frankfurt. Photograph: Alexander Scheuber / Getty Images

Demarai Gray, Leverkusen to Everton (£ 1.7 million)

At first glance, paying € 2 million for a player with 132 Premier League appearances and international matches at various youth levels for England was a no-brainer. It was the only fee Everton paid in a discreet transfer window, but it still came with question marks. Gray fell from grace at Leicester and only made 12 appearances in 18 months at Leverkusen, but the fickle midfielder is flourishing with Rafa Benitez scoring two goals in three league games. “Rafa has taught me things that benefit me,” says Gray. “He goes into every detail and gives clear instructions, so I feel like I’ve already improved.”

Fast guide

How the national teams fared last season


Luis Suárez (pictured) A great success. He scored 21 goals, including the winners in Atlético’s last two games to regain the title. Atléti now looks like the best team in Spain, while the former club Barcelona is in crisis.

Pierre-Emile Højbjerg With an impressive performance before José Mourinho’s tenure at Spurs was undone, Højbjerg was named to the Euro 2020 team of the tournament and has helped Tottenham start the season with three wins out of three.

Luca waldschmidt He scored two goals in his Benfica debut, but only managed five more all season. He has returned to the Bundesliga this summer with Wolfsburg.

James Rodriguez The Colombian made an instant impact when Everton climbed the table, but his form dropped dramatically and he has drifted to the sidelines. He is expected to leave in the summer but has not moved in yet, but could still join a club in Turkey.

Dani Parejo The midfielder left Valencia for Villarreal for free and helped his new club reach new heights, setting up Gerard Moreno’s goal and scoring on the penalty shoot-out that won the Europa League final.

Robin koch The defender played every minute of Leeds’ first 10 games, but missed three months with a knee injury. He struggled in a midfield role at Old Trafford and has suffered further injury problems.

Jude Bellingham He has already made more appearances for Dortmund than in Birmingham, while his form in Germany earned him a spot on England’s team for Euro 2020. It could hardly have gone better for the teenage midfielder.

Sam Lammers Atalanta was Italy’s top scorer, but the Dutch forward barely contributed; With two goals, he was surpassed by the central Cristian Romero. Loaned to Eintracht Frankfurt this summer.

Alexis Saelemaekers The versatile wing player was used heavily as a right winger by Milan last season as he finished second. He scored his first all-time goal for Belgium this week against the Czech Republic.

Antonee robinson He made the left-back position his own at Fulham, but couldn’t avoid the fall. Stayed at Craven Cottage and is impressing at the Championship with Marco Silva.

Alex Berenguer The winger played 35 league games with Athletic, the club’s top scorer with eight goals and five assists.

By Mario Götze Moving to PSV Eindhoven has paid off; Götze enjoyed a resurgence in the Eredivisie last summer and has signed a new long-term contract.

Summer tokens with the best value for money: 2020 | 2019 | 2018

Photograph: Denis Doyle / Getty Images Europe

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Aster Vranckx, Mechelen to Wolfsburg (£ 6.9 million)

Wolfsburg edged Frankfurt to a place in the Champions League, but saw coach Oliver Glasner join his first four rivals at the end of the season. Glasner had reportedly fallen out with VfL managing director Jörg Schmadtke, who replaced him with Mark van Bommel and led an ambitious wave of summer spending. Forwards Luca Waldschmidt and Lukas Nmecha have arrived, but senior midfielder Vranckx, who was secured in December but arrived with injury, could be key. Now back in shape, he will likely have his first-team opportunity after Xaver Schlager suffered an ACL injury.

Lazar Samardzic, Leipzig to Udinese (£ 2.6 million)

The German midfielder made The Guardian Next Generation finalist list in 2019 while at Hertha Berlin, and RB Leipzig had high hopes when they signed him last year. However, Samardzic failed to make an impact, and Leipzig decided to accept Udinese’s € 3 million offer this summer. An adaptable creative player in the mold of Kai Havertz, Samardzic scored a goal against Gerard Deulofeu in a recent friendly and was able to learn a lot playing alongside the Spaniard, who knows how to cope with the weight of high expectations.

Calvin Stengs, AZ Alkmaar to Nice (£ 8.5 million)

Two days after sealing an extraordinary title success with Lille, Christophe Galtier decided it was time for a new challenge. The coach headed south to start a rebuild in Nice, with six players arriving for modest fees, including midfielder Mario Lemina and Barcelona defender Jean-Clair Todibo. The best value of all may be Stengs, a winger who can drift into the frame and who impressed in the Eredivisie and Europa League last season. His fellow attacking prospects, forwards Amine Gouiri and Kasper Dolberg, will hope Stengs can bring that form to Ligue 1.

Matthew Hoppe, Schalke to Mallorca (£ 2.6 million)

Born in California and trained at the Barcelona academy in Arizona, the 6-foot-3 center-forward with German heritage seized the opportunity to join Schalke in 2019. As the team’s fortunes plummeted, Hoppe wrote to himself in history with a hat-trick against Hoffenheim that ended Schalke’s 30-game winless league streak. Schalke still fell, but Real Mallorca want Hoppe to reprise his role in Spain, taking opportunities from teammates Lee Kang-in (released by Valencia), Takefusa Kubo and Fer Niño (on loan from Real Madrid and Villarreal respectively) to help the yo-yo side finds some stability at the higher level.

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