7 Modern Legends That Left The Club That Made Them

Posted: March 20, 2013 in Uncategorized

Sometimes, club legends move from where they have learnt how to feast and devour. From the clubs that gave them the platform to shine and develop to another where newer challenges reside. The move receives a huge reaction by fans world over and the event becomes a significant part of the club’s history.
1. Thierry Henry

The Frenchman joined Arsenal after failing to impress at Juventus in the summer of 1999. He was reunited with his former manager Arsene Wenger who had also managed him at Monaco. Wenger turned a young, enthusiastic Thierry Henry into a striker. His searing pace and deadly eye for goal proved to be a fatal combo. The multitude of goals Henry managed to score for Arsenal is simply amazing. Volley’s, free kicks and headers were all in Henry’s ever expanding repertoire as Arsenal enjoyed one of the most successful era’s in their history. He kept on scoring, until, he finally bid goodbye. Henry moved to Barcelona in the summer of 2007. After struggling initially, he hit form in the second season and won 6 trophies with Barcelona in 2009-2010.
2. Michael Owen

Michael Owen won the Ballon D’or at 21. At an age when some players are content with just getting into the first team, he had been crowned the best player in Europe. He emerged through Liverpool’s youth system and set the world ablaze with his nimble feet coupled with the ability to finish. Then, in the summer of 2004 Real Madrid beckoned. There are not a lot of professional footballers who can refuse the call of the Spanish Giants, nor could he. Owen struggled to find his best form at Madrid as he quickly transferred back to Newcastle after a solitary season. After Newcastle got relegated, Liverpool’s greatest rivals Manchester United signed Michael Owen, a move that did win him a premier league title but deprived him of the adulation by the Anfield Faithful.
 3. Andrea Pirlo

The Italian pass master joined Ac Milan in 2001 from fierce rivals for 12 million. The fees also included  Dražen Brnčić moving to Inter. At Ac Milan, Pirlo developed into one of the best deep lying playmakers in the world. His range of passing and eye for goal from farther reaches of the midfield is second to none. The Italian won countless trophies in his 10 year spell at Milan, winning the Serie A and the Champions League twice. In 2011, Pirlo and Milan decided not to renew his contract. The free agent was snapped up by Milan’s fierce rivals Juventus as a player like Pirlo doesn’t stay a free agent for long. And what a signing it has been for the Old Lady. Juventus won the Seria A remaining unbeaten throughout the season. Instances like these are lessons as modern football starts criticizing a player as soon as they hit 30. The fact is, Pirlo has got better since he hit 30. It goes on to show, age is just a number.
4. Raul

When one starts talking about club legends at Real Madrid, Raul is as sacred as they get. Raul made his way through Athletico Madrid’s youth system and was quickly snapped up by Real Madrid as they saw a striker brimming with potential. He eventually broke into the first team and gradually established himself as one of the best strikers in the world. He is the top scorer in Champions League history with 71 goals. After scoring 323 goals in 741 appearances for Madrid, he left for German outfit Schalke in 2010. He never stopped scoring, amassing a good 40 goals in two seasons in Germany where he managed to score the goal of the year in 2011.
 5. Kaka

Let’s just say, he could’ve easily been a model. The god loving Brazilian joined Ac Milan in 2003 from his boyhood club Sau Paulo for a measly 8.5 million. The move turned out to be one of the best in the Italians club’s history as Kaka ran riot in the league and Europe alike. Kaka won the Champions League, Serie A and the club world cup before transferring to Real Madrid in 2009 for 65 million. In Spain, his career has stalled as the once player of the year struggles to break in the starting line-up.
 6. Cristiano Ronaldo
What can possibly be said about this man that hasn’t been said before?  Arguably the best players in the world left his youth club Sporting Lisbon to pursue greater pastures at Manchester United at a tender age of 18. He hit his stride in 2006 when he first scored more than 20 goals in a season for United.  Ronaldo had truly arrived on the world stage. He went on to win treble with Manchester United in 2008 and also the world player of the year award. But, to United’s sorrow; he contemplated moving to guess who? Yes, you got it right, Real Madrid. And following the pattern laid by myriads before, so he did.  Ronaldo hasn’t stopped scoring since his move; scoring at an otherworldly ratio of more than 1 since moving in 2009.
7. Alessandro Del Piero

Del Piero is the epitome of a club legend. He moved to Juventus from then Serie B side Padora when he was 17 in 1993. The rest, as they say is history. His illustrative career with the Italian Powerhouse lasted 19 seasons where he captained the side for 11. He holds massive amounts of goal scoring records for the club and is also the player to don the old Lady’s colors for a record 705 times. But all good things come to an end, and so did his spell with the Italian giants. On September 5 2012, Del Piero signed for Australian club Sydney Fc as the Italian searched for new ways to quench his insatiable thirst for first team football at 38. His legacy at Juventus will never be forgotten, his remarkable goals and free kicks are stories that will resonate in Turin for years to come. Del Piero is and always will be a legend at Juventus.


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