Premier League Loan Signings - Raul Jimenez

5 Unforgettable Premier League Loan Signings

Football fans frequently use the phrase “never fall in love with a loan player.” Most of the time, this rings true. Typically, when a player performs well on loan, their parent club is more likely to want to retain their services. However, in other instances, the player makes it a permanent move. Here are five of the most successful Premier League loan signings from over the years!

Carlos Tevez: West Ham to Manchester United

On a two-year loan deal from West Ham, Tevez made 99 appearances for the Red Devils, scoring 34 goals. Having already made 26 Premier League appearances before moving to Old Trafford, Tevez took some time to settle in at his new club and it wasn’t until his sixth league start that he got off the mark.

The Argentinian was part of a lethal forward line including Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney and went on to lift 2 Premier League titles along with a Champions League during his time with United. His subsequent move from Manchester to City tainted the popularity of Tevez among fans but it can’t be denied how successful his 2-year loan deal was.

Javier Mascherano: West Ham to Liverpool

Relatively unknown at the time, the signing of aggressive, tough-tackling defensive midfielder Javier Mascherano went under the radar when he arrived at Anfield for his loan spell with the Reds.

The Argentine international created a strong partnership with Steven Gerrard and Xabi Alonso during his loan spell in 2007/2008, achieving a 4th-place finish. It was no surprise that in July 2008, Liverpool made the transfer permanent with a €22.50 million transfer from West Ham.

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Manager Rafa Benitez was a big admirer of Mascherano and overall, he made 139 appearances, with 28 coming in the Champions League throughout his three years with the club.

Romelu Lukaku: Chelsea to West Brom

Tipped to be Europe’s most dangerous striker at the time, Romelu Lukaku’s year-long loan spell at West Brom was a roaring success. It was his first proper introduction to first-team football and showed the potential the young Belgian possessed.

The big centre forward scored 17 goals during his time at the Hawthorns during the 2012–13 season, securing a record eight-place finish for the Baggies. A particular highlight came in the final day 5-5 draw with Manchester United, with Lukaku coming off the bench to score a hat-trick.

The only complaint from West Brom supporters was that Lukaku never returned following his sole season at the club, going on to make over 200 Premier League appearances for Chelsea, Manchester United, and Everton.

Raul Jimenez: Benfica to Wolves

On a one-year loan from Benfica, Jimenez chipped in with 13 Premier League goals for newly promoted Wolves, helping Nuno Espirito Santo’s newly promoted side finish seventh and qualify for Europe. The Mexican had a huge part to play in the success achieved in his first season and his permanent transfer was a no-brainer for Wolves. His goals were vital but his all-round play was paramount to how they played all year. €38 million seemed like a bargain for a guaranteed goal scorer in what was a team on their way to establishing themselves in the Premier League.

After spending four years at Molineux following his permanent transfer, Jimenez quickly became the Wolves main man as the centre forward bagged over 50 goals in his 166 appearances for the club. This was a signing that changed the fortunes of the club for the better and it was a huge surprise to see him move to Premier League rivals Fulham this year.

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Martin Odegaard: Real Madrid to Arsenal

Arriving on the scene at Real Madrid at the young age of 16, Martin Odegaard was tipped to be Europe’s up-and-coming star. After a few unsuccessful loan spells at Heereenveen, Vitesse, & Real Sociedad, he eventually rocked up to North London. With endless amounts of potential, the Norwegian had no problem settling in as he quickly began to dictate from the “number 10” position he made his own.

The Gunners took a risk by taking the young midfielder on loan in 2021. He soon began to show all the potential he promised, flourishing in an Arsenal side full of youth and nailing down a starting spot for the remaining 5 months of the season. Having established himself as a key player for the Gunners, it was no surprise that they made the loan permanent, paying €35 million for the Norwegian.

The influence Odegaard has had cannot be underestimated, and the trust manager Mikel Arteta showed in naming him as club captain of a title-chasing team is one of many indicators of how important he has become to Arsenal.

Loan signings will always be a factor in today’s game; how successful they are is judged on a case-by-case basis, but as identified above, the impact of some can be huge.

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