How player loans are reshaping European football market

Short-term deals bring less risk for clubs but raise concerns over the club and footballers career development. By the time, Inter Milan signed Alexis Sánchez from England’s Manchester United, the Italian club might want to avoid paying a skyrocketed transfer fee.

The teams instead signed a season-long “loan” in which they would divide half-half the cost of the Chilean forward’s £18m annual salary, according to two people knowing about the terms of the deal.

This strategy is not unfamiliar to fans and pundits, with short-term player loans has become part of the game for decades. But their use has increased significantly in recent years as clubs make attempts to avoid the huge transfer fees typical for stars within European football’s multibillion-euro transfer market. This summer’s transfer window which last a three-month period in which teams can sign and transfer players is about to close for most big European leagues; however, according o a Financial Times analysis, in 1992, loans contributed just 6% of all transfers in Europe’s well-known “Big Five” leagues: England, Spain, Italy, Germany and France has rose to 20% throughout the recent decade ago, and has continued risen further to 29 per cent this year.

Interviews with football clubs executives and experts reveals that player loans are not only more popular, but their application has also become more complex, increasing from the result of smarter financial planning by leading football club executives, their sophisticated has begun to draw greater scrutiny from the sport’s regulators.

In the case of Sánchez, a temporary transfer is appropriate for both parties. The player has drain out of Manchester United’s first team, and the loan help reduce the burden to the English club’s enormous wage bill, totalling over £255m in 2018. Inter Milan, which has been increasingly thirsting for Italy’s Serie A league title since 2010, was willing to take a chance and bet on a footballer once considered as the world’s best, without paying huge sums with a permanent transfer.