By TAYMOUR MOWAFAK
After an outstanding performance from many of the nations competing in the World Cup, Germany was ultimately crowned this year’s champions. However, the end of the World Cup meant the start of the summer transfer season. For key young players from the World Cup, it was time for them to make their mark with a big European club.
One of the greatest players of the tournament was James Rodriguez from Colombia, winner of the World Cup golden boot for scoring 6 spectacular goals. Many clubs all around Europe targeted the 23-year-old Colombian, but only Real Madrid and Chelsea FC kept their radars on him. Since Chelsea already bought Diego Costa from Athletico Madrid for 32 million euros and Cesc Fabregeas from FC Barcelona for 40 million Euros, the team pulled out of the race. Spanish giant Real Madrid continually pushed for Rodriguez, and was able to seal the deal with his former club, AS Monaco, for 80 million Euros.
Some people believe that this amount of money was too much for any one player of the season, others say this key player will make a great addition to the team and will only excel with Real Madrid. University High School’s varsity goalkeeper Michael Armand (Sr.) said, “James is a great player, but he has a lot to prove to make up for his transfer price”.
With Rodriguez, Toni Kroos, Sami Khedira, Isco, Gareth Bale and Luka Modric battling for midfield, Real Madrid’s Angel Di Maria, known as the “Argentinean mastermind”, decided to move on and join Manchester United for 60 million euros.
Arguments began amongst the supporters. Some have requested to keep the Argentinean since he was leading assister at Real Madrid and was a crucial figure on the pitch, while others have said his prime is over and that he needed to move on to another team.
Real Madrid’s rivals, FC Barcelona, replied to the James Rodriguez deal by adding the Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez to its roster. The team penned the deal with Liverpool for a record fee of 95 million euros, making Rodriguez the most expensive transfer of the summer. Although he has joined the team, Suarez received a ban from FIFA for biting a player in the World Cup and is thus not allowed to make his debut until late October.
Vijay Sachet (Sr.) said, “It’s a risky move, Suarez is known to be a loose cannon, and you can never know when he could get suspended again, but if Barcelona can manage him properly, then he can turn into a wonderful signing and become a crucial teammate for Messi and Neymar.”
After Arsenal lost key player Robin Van Persie last year, they have been on the search for some replacements to rebuild their team. The team purchased the Chilean forward Alexis Sanchez from FC Barcelona for 35 million euros, as well as Danny Welback from Manchester United for 16 million euros.
The team believes these key additions will take them far in the Premier League and Champions League, but some of the fans do not agree. Arsenal fans Nicholas Markle (Sr.), Sachet and Armand agreed that “Welbeck is not the super star striker Arsenal fans wanted; he is a brilliant player but he will struggle to fit in for a while. But since Giroud is out for the rest of the year, he can prove himself. He has premier league experience as well as international experience with England.”
Before the transfer window closed, Manchester United loaned Radamel Falcao from AS Monaco just before Real Madrid could seal the deal. Manchester United spent over 180 million Euros this transfer season to reestablish their squad after suffering in 2013.
Manchester United’s coach Louis Van Gaal praised his team and said, “I am very privileged to manage such a brilliant team and I believe we will go far this year and make up for what happened last year”.
In the German league, Bayern Munich made some massive purchases from rivals Borussia Dortmund. The team bought Mario Gotze last season, who scored for Germany in the World Cup final against Argentina. Theyalso invited Gotze’s former teammate Robert Lewandowski to join. The Polish international could not resist joining for 8 million Euros. Ali Shelton (Sr.) said, “I was shocked. It was a shame for him to leave Borussia Dortmund but it is also exciting to see him join Bayern Munich. He is very talented and he will settle in easily. I expect him to have a strong season”. Besides strengthening its attacking side, the team also wants to keep its midfield strong. The team bought Xabi Alonso from Real Madrid for 10 million Euros. They are confident that he will provide strong reinforcements in the back.
Overall, this summer transfer window ended with many players joining big European teams after showing off their talent in the World Cup. However, some teams missed out and were unable to finalize in time. Expectations for these players are rising as the leagues have begun, and the Champions League is approaching; the players will soon have a chance to prove if they were worth the high price tags.