Bebe and Manchester United's Worst Recent Transfer Deals

Tim KeeneyContributor IJanuary 6, 2013

CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - JULY 21: Bebe of Manchester United during the MTN Football Invitational match between Ajax Cape Town and Manchester United at Cape Town Stadium on July 21, 2012 in Cape Town, South Africa.  (Photo by Luke Walker/Gallo Images/Getty Images)
Gallo Images/Getty Images

Saying Sir Alex Ferguson and Manchester United "jumped the gun" on Bebe would be a colossal understatement. 

The young Portuguese international's rise to fame is an inspiring one, as Ferguson was enthralled with the exciting talent and decided to sign him after just 26 professional appearances with Estrela, a second division club in Portugal. (Bebe technically transferred to United from Vitoria de Guimaraes, but he never actually played there).

But the talent never surfaced. Bebe managed just seven total appearances with the Red Devils and was soon loaned to Turkish side Besiktas on a season-long loan. Last week, the youngster was once again loaned out, this time to Rio Ave in Portugal. 

Bebe is still 22 years old and has immense potential, but the word "bust" will quickly approach if he doesn't soon find a way into Ferguson's lineup.

Let's take a look at some other recent (relatively speaking. We're looking at the last 15 years) transfer deals that we know went poorly. 

 

Massimo Taibi

Manchester United purchased Taibi for £4.5 million in 1999, hoping the 29-year-old Italian would protect the goal for a long time.

Instead, the thing he's remembered for is a pathetic blunder in a home tie against Southampton.

Woops.

Overall, Taibi made just a handful—a minuscule handful—of appearances before being quickly replaced in the starting 11 and forced to return to Italy. 

 

Juan Sebastian Veron

After impressing with Lazio, Veron was courted by several English teams to join the Premier League. Unfortunately for the Manchester United faithful, it was the Red Devils who eventually won out when they acquired him for a massive fee of £28.1 million.

That's a steep price to pay for someone who often looked overmatched. He managed to find the back of the net 11 times in 47 appearances across all competition, but for the price, the midfielder simply didn't prove to be worth it.

Of course, the Devils can always revel in the fact that after inconsistent play from Veron, they sold him to Chelsea (where he again was a disappointment) for £15 million. 

 

Jose Kleberson

The man who was supposed to replace Veron didn't exactly serve as such a great transfer purchase, either.

After establishing himself as a major player in Brazil's 2002 World Cup run, Kleberson attracted interest from several English teams. Eventually, Manchester United signed him for a fee of  £6.5 million. 

But in two seasons in Manchester, the young center midfielder failed to make an impact. He was far from a permanent fixture in the starting lineup and seemed overwhelmed.

When it was all said and done, he scored just two goals and was sold to Besiktas for a minimal fee.