Players who had Ballon d Or clause in their contract but didn’t live up to it

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It’s worth noting that numerous top players, particularly in the Premier League, include Ballon d’Or clauses in their contracts. Let’s explore five of these players.

Thiago Alcantara 

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Thiago Alcantara’s transfer to Liverpool took place during the summer of 2020, marking the end of his illustrious seven-year stint in Germany. At 30 years of age, he’s widely regarded as one of the most well-rounded midfielders in contemporary football. Liverpool acquired his services for a bargain deal of £26 million, inclusive of performance-based bonuses.

Notably, only a modest £5 million was initially paid by the Premier League club, with the remainder contingent on meeting specific clauses and conditions. One of these clauses stipulates that Liverpool would owe a bonus if they clinch both the Premier League and the Champions League during Thiago’s tenure.

Additionally, Alcantara’s contract includes a Ballon d’Or clause, obligating Liverpool to provide a bonus if the Spanish midfielder secures the prestigious award.

Anthony Martial 

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In the summer of 2015, Anthony Martial made a high-profile move to the Premier League, securing a £54 million transfer from AS Monaco. This record-breaking fee made him the world’s costliest teenager at the time, a distinction he still holds in Premier League history.

During that period, the French talent was widely recognized as one of the most promising figures in global football and had an impressive beginning to his Manchester United career. His debut for The Red Devils featured a memorable solo goal against arch-rivals Liverpool in a Premier League match. However, his trajectory has since plateaued, relegating him to a peripheral role within Manchester United.

It’s worth noting that Martial’s potential was significantly reflected in his 2015 transfer. Manchester United agreed to pay an additional £7.2 million bonus if Martial were to attain the prestigious Ballon d’Or accolade.

Back in 2015, following his win of the Golden Boy award, the highest individual honor in football, the Ballon d’Or, seemed like the logical next step for Martial. However, given his current form, that aspiration appears less attainable.

Bruno Fernandes 

Bruno wants to manage Manchester United.

Bruno Fernandes has emerged as a strong contender for the 2021 Ballon d’Or award. His transition to Manchester United, following a £56.7 million transfer from Sporting Lisbon last year, was nothing short of remarkable. Following in the footsteps of compatriot Cristiano Ronaldo, who made the same journey, Fernandes has solidified his position as one of the world’s premier No. 10’s.

In his debut Premier League season, the Portuguese playmaker played a pivotal role in Manchester United’s top-4 finish, and he has continued to excel. While many have marveled at his extraordinary abilities, Fernandes’s contract included provisions to reward his exceptional performances.

One notable clause in the 27-year-old’s contract stipulated that Manchester United would pay €5 million after Fernandes reached 20 appearances for the club. The Red Devils also disbursed an additional €5 million following the team’s qualification for the 2020-21 Champions League.

Reports have also suggested that Fernandes has clauses in his contract that would activate if he were to secure the prestigious Ballon d’Or accolade. Additionally, the Portuguese midfielder received a bonus upon reaching his 50th appearance for Manchester United.

Mohamed Salah

Highest paid African football players in the world

Salah was considered a top contender for the 2021 Ballon d’Or award. Interestingly, there’s a ‘special clause’ tucked away in his Liverpool contract, as reported by Spanish outlet Don Balon.

This clause stated in 2021 that if Salah doesn’t win the Ballon d’Or with Liverpool, he’ll have the option to transfer to either Barcelona or Real Madrid.

Cristiano Ronaldo

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has signed a two-year contract extension to keep him at the club until the summer of 2025. The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss has won nine major trophies, including four Premier League titles, since taking charge at City in 2016. Guardiola said: “I am so pleased to be staying at Manchester City for another two years. “I can’t say thank you enough to everyone at the club for trusting me. I am happy and comfortable, and I have everything I need to do my job as best as possible. “I know the next chapter of this club will be amazing for the next decade. It happened over the last 10 years, and it will happen in the next 10 years because this club is so stable. “From day one I felt something special being here. I cannot be in a better place. “I still have the feeling there is more we can achieve together and that is why I want to stay and continue fighting for trophies.” City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak said: “I am delighted that Pep’s journey with Manchester City Football Club will continue. “He has already contributed so much to the success and fabric of this organisation, and it’s exciting to think what might be possible given the energy, hunger and ambition that he clearly still has. “Under his very special leadership our first team has accomplished so much, whilst continuously playing, and constantly evolving, a City style of football that is admired the world over. Like every City fan, I am looking forward to what lies ahead.”

At the age of 36, Cristiano Ronaldo continues to be one of the most formidable and revered forwards in global football. Together with Lionel Messi, Ronaldo has been a dominant figure in the Ballon d’Or awards for the past decade. It’s, therefore, no surprise that his contract includes some special provisions.

As reported by the Daily Star, Ronaldo willingly accepted a substantial pay cut, transitioning to a £475,000-a-week contract upon his return to Old Trafford. This marked a significant reduction from his previous staggering salary of £900,000-a-week while at Juventus. Nevertheless, his new agreement features several unique clauses.

One such clause outlines that the five-time Ballon d’Or winner is eligible for a £1 million bonus in three specific scenarios. The first scenario involves Manchester United securing the Champions League title during Ronaldo’s initial two-year contract, which has the option of an additional year. The clause can also be activated if the Portuguese star claims the Ballon d’Or accolade or the UEFA Player of the Year award.

The Portuguese left the club after a fall out with Manchester United current manager Erik Ten Hag and now plays in the Saudi Pro League.

 

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