In football, there are many ways to approach the transfer-market: from relying in a short-term, aggressive policy of buying the best players from around the world like Paris-Saint-Germain and Manchester City to producing home-grown talent through the club academy to sell on a regular basis, like Ajax or Anderlecht. But the best example we have seen in the last decade is that of FC Porto, which have consolidated themselves as the undisputed kings of the market. Since winning the Champions League in 2004 with José Mourinho on the bench, they have cashed in a total of € 782,53 million from players sales, according to transfermarkt data.
During the last decade they have basically copied and pasted the same strategy every transfer window: they sell their star-players on the market, with their extremely efficient scouting system providing substitutes season after season. In this way not only their income from sales is stable over the years, but they are able to maintain success on the football pitch. They are always ready to give youngsters a chance, and this strategy has brought 19 more trophies at the club since their triumph in the Champions League.
The prime example of their policy was the sale of Radamel Falcao, who holds the record for the biggest fee received. They acquired the Colombian sensation from River Plate, for € 5,34 million. During the 2010/2011 season, El Tigre won them the Europa League, scoring the deciding goal in the final against Sporting Braga, raising his total in the competition to 17 goals scored, setting a new Europa League goalscoring record, surpassing Jürgen Klinsmann’s previous record of 15 goals. In August of 2011, they sell their striker to Atlético de Madrid, which paid the Colombian releasing fee, worth € 45 million. FC Porto made a net gain of € 39,66 million, turning an incredible 743% profit from the deal.
To summarize FC Porto success in the transfer-market, I made a series of interactive data visualizations. You can browse FC Porto sales by year, by club and by players nationalty, by simply clicking on the images.
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