Super Agent Jorge Mendes' 20 Biggest Transfer Deals

Mark Jones@@Mark_Jones86Featured ColumnistOctober 10, 2014

Super Agent Jorge Mendes' 20 Biggest Transfer Deals

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    Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

    He's the man behind most of the money-spinning transfers that we see in world football each and every year, and there is little doubt that former nightclub owner Jorge Mendes has now become one of the most powerful men in the world game.

    Mendes' involvement in many of the sport's mega deals is now seen as a given, and as he continues to help broker several of the top transfers you have to wonder just what his next move will be.

    The Portuguese has seen his name in the headlines for over a decade now, but what are his biggest deals? Here we take a look at his top 20.

    N.B. All transfer fees are taken from this excellent feature on Mendes by The Guardian's David Conn, which was published last month.  

Cristiano Ronaldo, Sporting Lisbon to Manchester United, 2003

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    Stu Forster/Getty Images

    Fee: £12 million

    Six years after Mendes' first-ever transfer deal came one of his most significant, as he helped broker the deal which would take Cristiano Ronaldo from Sporting Lisbon to Manchester United, starting the young winger out on a path which would end with him becoming one of the best footballers in the world.

    Of course the fee that United would pay was to prove to be a steal, too, and Mendes was to be involved in an even bigger move for his fellow countryman later on in his career.

Paulo Ferreira, Porto to Chelsea, 2004

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    Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

    Fee: £13.2 million

    After successfully negotiating his client Jose Mourinho's move from Porto to Chelsea, it was always likely that Mendes was going to have a say in the transfers which took some of Mourinho's players to London, too.

    One of the first was the Portugal international full-back Paulo Ferreira, who moved to Stamford Bridge just weeks after Mourinho in 2004 and ended up staying for nine years, being part of squads which won three Premier League titles and the Champions League.

Ricardo Carvalho, Porto to Chelsea, 2004

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    Ben Radford/Getty Images

    Fee: £20 million

    Another player to follow both Mourinho and Ferreira to Stamford Bridge was Ricardo Carvalho, and the centre-back wasted no time striking up a partnership with John Terry which helped the Blues to back-to-back Premier League titles in the manager's first two seasons at the club.

    A favourite with the Chelsea fans, Carvalho stayed for six seasons and won one more title under Carlo Ancelotti before leaving for Real Madrid, again with Mendes's help.

Nani, Sporting Lisbon to Manchester United, 2007

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    Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

    Fee: £22.4 million

    Following the same path which had been taken by Ronaldo four years earlier, Portuguese winger Nani left Sporting Lisbon for Manchester United in the summer of 2007, and he won the Champions League in his first season with the club.

    Often a bit-part player under Sir Alex Ferguson, Nani nonetheless had his moments at United before a loss of form and fitness contributed to his move back to Sporting on loan this summer.

Anderson, Porto to Manchester United, 2007

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    Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

    Fee: £27 million

    At the same time that Nani made the move from Sporting, United also shelled out for the exciting Brazilian teenager Anderson from Porto as they sought to revolutionise an ageing midfield.

    Despite some early promise though, Anderson has turned out to be a disappointment at Old Trafford, where he remains on the books despite several attempts to offload him and an underwhelming loan spell at Fiorentina last season.

Pepe, Porto to Real Madrid, 2007

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    Jasper Juinen/Getty Images

    Fee: £24 million

    Mendes has often been at the centre of the several moves which see players leave Porto for pastures new seemingly every year, and that was the case when he helped agree the deal which took defender Pepe to Real Madrid in the summer of 2007.

    These days established as one of the more recognisable characters in world football due to his frequent antics and winding up of opponents, the Portuguese can at least point to two La Liga titles and the Champions League as evidence of his worth.

Simao Sabrosa, Benfica to Atletico Madrid, 2007

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    Bernat Armangue/Associated Press

    Fee: £16.5 million

    After focusing all of his major deals on Porto and Sporting Lisbon, Mendes turned to Benfica in 2007 when he helped take the gifted midfielder Simao Sabrosa from the Eagles to Atletico Madrid despite plenty of competition for his signature.

    Simao would stay at Atletico for four years, winning the Europa League in 2010.

Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United to Real Madrid, 2009

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    Jasper Juinen/Getty Images

    Fee: £80 million

    After a couple of years of speculation, Mendes finally helped broker his record deal when he took Ronaldo from Manchester United—where he'd helped him move six years earlier—to Real Madrid for a then-world-record £80 million.

    Initially given the No. 9 shirt due to the presence of club legend Raul in the No. 7, it didn't take long for Ronaldo to prove a hit with the Real fans, with his record for the club now standing at a remarkable 269 goals in 257 games.

Angel Di Maria, Benfica to Real Madrid, 2010

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    Angel Martinez/Getty Images

    Fee: £21 million

    A year after Ronaldo's move to the Bernabeu, Mendes was helping another gifted attacker make the switch as a then-22-year-old Angel Di Maria swapped Benfica for Real Madrid.

    The Argentina international won La Liga and the Champions League with the Madrid giants before making a high-profile move away in the summer of 2014, although we'll come to that later.

Fabio Coentrao, Benfica to Real Madrid, 2011

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    Denis Doyle/Getty Images

    Fee: £26.4 million

    A year after Di Maria's move, Benfica full-back Fabio Coentrao swapped Lisbon for the Spanish capital after impressing for Portugal at left-back at the 2010 World Cup.

    A versatile performer seemingly happy to only play a bit-part role, Coentrao has featured semi-regularly for Real over the past four seasons, often alternating left-back duties with the Brazilian Marcelo and sometimes performing in the centre of midfield.

Radamel Falcao, Porto to Atletico Madrid, 2011

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    David Ramos/Getty Images

    Fee: £32 million

    In the first of three money-spinning moves inside three years, Colombian Radamel Falcao was first involved in a Mendes transfer when he swapped Porto for Atletico Madrid in the summer of 2011.

    The prolific forward's goals had just guided the Portuguese giants to the Europa League title, and he'd do exactly the same thing for Atletico in his first campaign in the Spanish capital, where he'd score 70 goals in 91 appearances.

Sergio Aguero, Atletico Madrid to Manchester City, 2011

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    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Fee: £38 million

    Falcao moved to Madrid as a replacement for the Argentinian Sergio Aguero, who had left the club earlier that summer to join the revolution taking place at Manchester City in the Premier League.

    Aguero unforgettably scored the goal in the final minute of the final match of the season to win City the league title in his first campaign in England, while he's gone on to net 81 times in 131 games for the club, winning another league title last season.

James Rodriguez, Porto to Monaco, 2013

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    Lionel Cironneau/Associated Press

    Fee: £38.5 million

    Monaco's mega-millions brought another team to the table for Mendes in the summer of 2013, and he was determined to exploit that.

    Colombia's James Rodriguez had established himself as one of the best players in Portugal during three years with Porto, and so Mendes could get a good fee for a gifted attacking midfielder when he helped broker his move to the Ligue 1 club, where he'd stay for just a season.

Joao Moutinho, Porto to Monaco, 2013

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    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Fee: £22 million

    At the same time as Rodriguez was making the switch, Joao Moutinho—a gifted playmaker who had previously played for Sporting Lisbon—was also swapping Porto for the new project taking place in the Principality.

    Again Mendes played his part, and Moutinho has proven to be predictably impressive in a Monaco side which finished second in France last season and qualified for the Champions League. 

Radamel Falcao, Atletico Madrid to Monaco, 2013

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    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Fee: £52.8 million

    The third big name that Mendes took to Monaco last summer was Radamel Falcao, as the Colombian ended his two-year stint to join the newly monied Ligue 1 side to the surprise of many.

    Injury problems were to dog his campaign at the club but he still managed 13 goals in 22 games before Mendes popped up again this summer.

Diego Costa, Atletico Madrid to Chelsea, 2014

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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

    Fee: £32 million

    Mendes also played his part in what is already looking to be the most significant move into the Premier League this season, as forward Diego Costa continues to shine at Chelsea.

    The Brazilian-born Spanish international has plundered nine goals in his opening seven matches in the competition, a remarkable run and one that only looks set to continue as Jose Mourinho's second coming at Chelsea—again brokered by Mendes—promises much.

James Rodriguez, Monaco to Real Madrid, 2014

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    Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

    Fee: £71 million

    After winning the Golden Boot at this summer's World Cup, it never looked likely that James Rodriguez was going to stay at Monaco for another season.

    Indeed, Real Madrid made their move for a player who of course has both excellent footballing qualities and marketability value, and not long after Colombia were knocked out of the tournament in Brazil, the gifted midfielder was on his way to the Bernabeu in the second-most expensive transfer ever conducted by Mendes.

Eliaquim Mangala, Porto to Manchester City, 2014

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    Gareth Copley/Getty Images

    Fee: £32 million

    The Porto production line may have slowed a little, but Mendes could still help them bring in £32 million for the French defender Eliaquim Mangala this summer, with Manchester City only too happy to pay that for a player who can fill what has been a problem position for them.

    Injury has restricted Mangala's contributions in a City shirt so far, but he was excellent in the recent draw with Chelsea and will hope to keep up that form for the majority of his stay in England.

Angel Di Maria, Real Madrid to Manchester United, 2014

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    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Fee: £59.7 million

    Despite playing a key role in their Champions League success last season, Angel Di Maria was finding himself squeezed out at Real Madrid following the arrivals of James Rodriguez and others.

    Step forward Mendes, who managed to negotiate a mega deal with Manchester United this summer despite the Red Devils not finding themselves in the Champions League this season. It wouldn't be the last time the agent would be in correspondence with officials at Old Trafford. 

Radamel Falcao, Monaco to Manchester United, 2014

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    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Fee: £6.7 million loan fee (plus huge wages and future fee)

    On transfer deadline day at the beginning of September, Mendes helped broker the stunning loan deal which took Radamel Falcao to Manchester United from Monaco.

    Although the loan fee involved doesn't really measure up to any of the super-agent's deals that he's conducted in the past, you can be sure that United will be paying a hefty sum to Falcao in wages and will be ready to pay a permanent fee for a player who scored his first goal for the club in the recent win over Everton.