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Juventus vs Borussia Dortmund: The Battle of Clever Transfers

In the age where shelling out above 100 million seems commonplace, Juventus and Dortmund will battle it out to figure out how to buy great players for lesser amounts of money.

Last updated: 15.07.2019
Juventus vs Borussia Dortmund: The Battle of Clever Transfers | Sports Social Blog

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The transfer window is nearing the climactic end every day. It started out with hopes and a lot of them turned into reality. There’s almost no doubt that when people look back to this window, they’ll think of Hazard and Griezmann, two of the biggest names (aside from LM10 and CR7) in football finally changed their clubs. Rightfully so; they are among the best in the world and their transfers involved a lot of money and years of anticipation. They filled all the criteria for highlight transfers of the season. That being said, there was a lot of great business done for lesser sums of money and while that might not attract a lot of hype, it does convey a sense of intelligence when it comes to the way transfers should be done. Two clubs who really exemplified the idea of business done for low amounts of money while bringing in an immense amount of talent were Juventus and Dortmund. Players like Ramsey, Rabiot, Buffon on one side and Hummels, Schulz and Thorgan Hazard on the other side will all be clad in white and yellow next season. Let’s see who won this battle of smart business.

Round 1: Saving Money


Borussia Dortmund were lauded by most football fans when they started off the season with the purchases of Brandt and Thorgan Hazard. Both wingers really came into their own as the seasons passed and bought for a combined fee of 50.5 million EUR. Then there was the much publicized return of Mats Hummels for 30 million EUR. Nico Schulz and Paco Alcacer were also bought for 25.5 and 21 million EU. Paco Alcacer already proved himself at Dortmund being the top scorer for the club in the Bundesliga 2018-19. Schulz proved to be extremely useful racking up 5 assists and 1 goal despite playing full-back.

Juventus’ transfers were not as publicized until Rabiot’s move pushed the club to the spotlight. It was obvious that Juve wouldn’t be able to spend as much after shelling out 117 million EUR for Cristiano Ronaldo in the last season. So they decided to exercise prudence and made some fantastic free transfers. The three ones that really made the headlines were that of Ramsey, Buffon and Adrien Rabiot. All three have been excellent players for the most part. They also bought Cristian Romero and  Luca Pellegrini for a combined sum of 48 million EU to bolster their defense.


In the end, while Borussia Dortmund pulled some fantastic moves, Juventus one-upped them with free transfers involving big name players. It’s hard to beat the low price of 0 euros.


Winner: Juventus

Round 2: Investing in the future

All the players aside from Hummels that Borussia Dortmund Bought were all below the age of 30. In fact, all the aforementioned players are in their mid-twenties with Julian Brandt being 23. They have all proved themselves to be very capable in the league and are expected to only improve further down the line.


Juventus bought some good players but they are not as young as the ones from Dortmund aside from Adrien Rabiot(24). Ramsay is nearing 30 while Buffon is past 40. Romero and Pellegrini are in their early twenties to bring the balance back but are arguably not as well proven as the young players bought by Dortmund.


Winner: Borussia Dortmund.


Round 3: The Liabilities and Salaries


Juventus bought all players for free but they do have to pay them salaries. And they don’t look cheap. Rabiot will reportedly earn 7 million EUR. Buffon’s fee is under wraps but it should be around 4 Million EUR given that he earned the same amount when he played at Turin and was always among the highest paid players there. The numbers surrounding Ramsay are even crazier with reports saying he could earn around 330k Euros/week at the minimum which would put the yearly tally above 16 million Euros just for him. Combine all that with Ronaldo’s salary of 31 Million.


The most expensive player at Dortmund is Marco Reus who earns roughly 9 million EUR. It is a given that none of the new transfers will earn that much under the new contracts. It is highly unlikely that any of the new transfers will exceed salaries of 5 million considering the rest of the Dortmund salaries.


There is also the age problem as mentioned earlier which would increase the chances of injury to players further dampening Juventus’ chances. 

Winner: Borussia Dortmund


Round 4: Complementing the team by fitting into Rotations

There are redundancies on both sides and the managers will have to get creative with rotations. Dortmund bought Thorgan Hazard and Brandt both of whom are left wingers and their biggest transfers so there might be problems with that. They have to figure out how to integrate Morey in defense with players like Hakimi and Piszczek. Integrating Hummels into the squad where Zagadou and Diallo and Akanji have become set players will be difficult.


In this regard Juventus were smart. The will have Szczesny as a primary goalkeeper and Buffon can be easily rotated. Ramsey is known for being a pretty good substitute player who gives energy to the team as he’s brought in, not that he can’t do well as a starting XI player. This is further apparent considering he was involved in a mammoth tally of 14 substitutions in Arsenal last season. Adrien Rabiot’s position might be a little deceptive at first but the fact is Juventus heavily concentrates on the central midfield when it comes to player rotations(Pjanic, Bentancur, Matuidi and Emre Can all had frequent substitutions last season). This would make the rotations a little more simple and straightforward.

Juventus’ potential substitutions and rotations in light of the new transfers seem more head-on and less problematic. 

Winner: Juventus

Round 5: Influence in turning the PSG tide

It’s no mystery that PSG changed the game when it came to transfers, inflating to the market to unexpected heights with their Neymar and Mbappe transfers. Soon, clubs like Barcelona and Real Madrid joined in all of whom have completed signings in the 100 million Ballparks. Even Atletico Madrid did the same with Joao Felix’s transfer.  Clubs like these two seem to be trying to curb that uptick in inflation with smart purchases. 

Dortmund kicked off the transfer season with those nifty purchases, the most expensive of which was Mats Hummels. Most players they bought were young and they proved themselves a lot in their leagues. Paco Alcacer was their top scorer for the season with 18 goals and he was bought for 21 million. Thorgan Hazard had 13 goals and 10 assists in the season while Julian Brandt scored 10 goals in 12 assists (both players in the Bundesliga). They were each bought for 25 million approx. Smart business was definition of the way Dortmund handled transfers.

Juventus got great players for free. Buffon returned for free while Aaron Ramsey and Rabiot were fresh arrivals who came under the same price tag. Ramsey scored 4 goals and 6 assists last season despite rarely playing full games. Rabiot managed a passing accuracy of 93.1% last season, albeit across 14 games.


While it seems that Juventus is pulling ahead, the problem here is that their biggest transfers were free and aside from Rabiot none of them were young. Free transfers are not exactly the types that will influence and try to reduce the huge sums of money being spent on football players right now. The fact is that spending is also crucial when it comes to influencing. Aside from that, the Dortmund transfers pulled fantastic(and better) numbers in the 2018-19 season coupled with the fact that most of them are young. They also received a lot of publicity for buying those players early in the window before other clubs started with the big bids which further adds to the influence.


Winner of Round 5 and Match-up: Borussia Dortmund

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