Continued from :

Even the weakest has the strong point. Albeit Inter has done so many terrible transfers, Moratti and his mercato team still shows their sanity and intelligence by conducting good transfers.  Although the ratio between the good and bad transfers is about 1:8 to 1:10, at least there are some great signing to keep Inter in the Europe elite circle.

Again, the list is not about who is the best player ever in Inter. It is neither about how skillful is the player nor about his contribution only. It is about the player who contributes the most with least price. For example, if somehow Iner buy Messi for € 200 million and score with the same rate like he does in Barca, he still is rated as decent or good transfer, not brilliant, as we expect nothing less from such transfer..

Credit to for providing transfer value. Note : all the price mentioned are in million Euro.

Grey area : Ibrahimovic (in : € 24.8 million, out : 90), Ronaldo (in : 28, out : 45) , Christian Vieri (in : 45, out : 0), Recoba (in : 17, out : 0)

Before we enter to top 10 best transfer, let me introduce the grey are. These are high profile names who seemed like good piece of transfers but, after giving deeper thought, one could wonder if they were really good.

Ibra brought Inter all the domestics trophies, but on darker side, he brought his notorious European curse to the club which never won UCL since 1966.

Ronaldo was the best gifted and talented player in Inter squad since established, but he only presented 1 UEFA Cup. Twice he did almost get his hand of Scudetto, only to lost in final matches as Pietro Cecarini robbed the title in 1998 and the whole team played terribly in 2002, giving up Scudetto and 2nd place. They were not Ronaldo’s fault and Ronaldo was always the best player in every season, but sadly statistic didn’t have sentiment thus let Ronaldo down for only giving 1 UEFA Cup. His record in Inter is 49 goals in 68 matches. Excellent goal per game stat, but 68 matches in 4 seasons was way too few for a player who smashed world transfer record, thanks to his prolonged injuries.

Vieri’s case was almost the same with Ronaldo, only worse. Broke the world transfer record but gave 0 titles for Nerazzurri. His stat was 103 goals in 145 games, excellent. But it was expected from world most expensive player. Zero title and rebellious attitude at the end of Inter career, it was close call and Vieri doesn’t make it for the 10 best transfer list.

Out of 4 players, Recoba was the worst. He was unknown player when Inter bought him. It seemed the transfer would turn out to be masterpiece as he showed terrific talent especially since his dream debut. But too bad he didn’t have the mentality to compete in high level competition and his susceptibility to injury didn’t allow him to contribute much for Inter. Also, he was an apple to Moratti’s eye, thus pushed Moratti to fire any coach who didn’t fit Recoba in the system  and forced every next coaches to play Recoba in every matches whenever possible. Furthermore, Recoba was the highest paid player in the world back then although his contribution was relative few. Indirectly, Recoba brought more instability to already turbulent Inter.

Honourable mention to decent and good transfers like Zamorano, Djorkaeff, Cauet, Pagliuca, Toldo, Samuel etc.

10. Ivan Cordoba (in :14, out : -)

An stalwart in Inter defence since 2000. His short frame doesn’t obstruct him to be one of world best defender back then. Since his arrival in Inter, he already secured 1 spot in center back.and became vice-captain until now.

As age began to devour his ability and fine physical quality, he became sub player and rarely got any playing time. Inter must be thankful for Cordoba because he never complaint about his lack of appearances in Inter games and it is the ultimate proof of his loyalty to Inter. At the end of the season, he will retire at the club he loves and every true Interisti must love him too.

Close call between Cordoba and Samuel as both of them are terrific defender. Considering Samuel costed Inter about € 25 million while Cordoba € 14 million and the latter plays longer, Cordoba won the place.

9. Dejan Stankovic (in : 4, out : ?)

A surprisingly cheap transfer for a player of Stankovic calibre. Back then in Lazio, Stankovic was one of Lazio best player, but how the financial crisis in Lazio forced them to sell him in mid season with low price. Versatile and adventurous midfielder with great defence and passing, Deki could play anywhere in midfield with excellence. When he joined Inter in mid season, he became important right after and he is still a regular first team player for current Inter.

Now, he doesn’t have those legs and lungs to run for 90 minutes and there are declines in some department, but he remains as one of the best signing for Nerazzurri.

8. Thiago Motta (in : 15, out : 11.5)

You just realize how precious is something or someone when you lose it. That’s what happen to Inter when selling Motta to PSG. His game was all about simple pass and broke up opponent’s attack before they began. A typical modern central midfielder like Carrick, Busquet, or Yaya Toure. Nothing stood out in his play to convince Inter board to keep him. Ranieri asked to not sell him as he realized the player’s importance, but the request fell to deaf ears. As soon as Motta departed, Inter began to crumble as the statistic speaks. When Motta played, Inter raked up 95 % winning ratio including 7 consecutives victories. But when after he was sold, Inter lost 8 and drew 1, the results which ended in Ranieri dismissal.

It was then when Inter realized they relied on Motta too much in simple but important aspects. When Inter wanted to start the offence, the defenders tended to pass the ball to Motta so he roled as the offence starter. And, when the opponents were about to attack, Motta was their first barrier, held them out to buy the time for the defence to organize themselves. They were simple tasks, no flashy clearance, no spectacular interception, no killer pass, rarely shot. He was a jack of all trades, but without the jack, the royal flush won’t be completed.

7. Diego Milito (in : 20, out : ?)

The most expensive players in top 10 list. Inter bought the Milito and Motta in same time. Milito caught Inter eye with his outstanding achievement as second capocannoniere under Ibra with midtable club Genoa. But the reputation still didn’t convince most Interisti. Pressure in big club is completely different, let alone playing in UCL. Milito didn’t have any experience in high-level competition, not in club level, not in national team so it was just natural for every Interisti to doubt him. How relieved are the Interisti when he proved they were wrong. He proved that his Serie-A top scorer weren’t a fluke and he still is the main scorer machine for Inter. The final days of 3 competitions were his biggest stage. He scored all the winners to seal the treble. In Serie-A, 2 goals in 0-1 against Siena, 1-0 against Rome, and double again in 2-0 against B. Munich.

Although his reputation was tainted when injury plagued him thus got himself the Bidone D’oro (Serie-A biggest flop) award, he proved everyone that he still is the deadly striker by leading Inter scorechart and putting himself in 4th position in Serie-A top scorers with 20 goals.

6. Lucio (in : 7, out : ?)

He was Munich key defender until Van Gaal came and omitted him from his team plan. Mourinho-Oriali didn’t miss the chance and didn’t waste any second to land him in Inter with cut-price. Lucio teamed up with Samuel, forming Latino duet and they managed to quell down every attack thrown at them. Lucio became important element in Mourinho system and he showed his best individual defending quality when he completely nullified Drogba threat when Inter met Chelsea. Against Barcelona in semifinal, once again Lucio and co defended valiantly against the storm of Blaugrana. As Mourinho instructed to defend very deeply and centrally, letting Barca moved to flank and crossed the ball. Barca’s lack of aerial threat was one thing, but it were the quality of Lucio and Samuel which allowed Mourinho to let the crossing came as he trusted Lucio-Samuel would thwart the attack. And in final, Lucio got a sweet revenge against his former club and the coach who wasted him.

Currently, Lucio is not the same force as he was 2 years ago. Age has slowed down his movement and reaction. Also, he began to lost his discipline after Mourinho went and he started to do his trademark run again, much to the worry of the defence. Neverthless, Lucio is still key defender for Inter and he is still unreplaceable.

5. Maicon (in : 6.8, out : ?)

He was in Brazil national team since 2003 and became main right back after Cafu retired. But it was his move to Inter which emerged his name as the elite fullback. And after he won his personal duel with Dani Alvez, he confirmed himself as the world best right back and an automatic choice for Brazil right back spot.

As a marauding fullback, Maicon became an important attacking outlet from the right flank. Fast and powerful, he burst past the right flank leaving his marker in his trail then providing cross for Milito to finish. A typical Brazilian fullback just like Jorginho, Cafu, and Carlos. Defensively, he did his duty well and proved to be more reliable than Alves. And when the attack met the dead end, he would rise up as the saviour to break the deadlock. The goal against Juventus in 2010 was an absolute beauty which put every attacker in jealous. And his goal in World Cup 2010 against North Korea gave his team a momentum after scoreless 55 minute.

Again, the classic cases for most of Inter aging player. His magics faded after the treble season ended and his lowpoint were when he was bullied to death by Bale twice. Also, the 4-0 loss against Rome really put Maicon capability into question. It seems Maicon would never return to his old form, but Inter really did well by creating once world best full back from € 6.8 million player.

4. J. Cesar (in : 0, out : ?)

Snapped up by free transfer and soon loaned to Chievo. He was undisputed first team goalkeeper in Flamengo and he also was called up for Brazil in 2004. But he still had much to prove. With Toldo still delivered good performances between the post, it seemed Cesar would be his sub until his playing day was over or it would turn out to be failed transfer as Inter used to do. But Cesar took Toldo place faster than expected and he never looked back ever since. Everyone has already lost count on how many times Cesar has saved Inter from the losses. When it seemed Inter will concede a certain goal, came Cesar with his stunning save which put every Interisti to relief -and the opponent to frustration-.

His form continue until the world couldn’t deny he was the contender for old names like Casillas and Buffon as the world best goalkeeper. Too bad as Mourinho reign fell, he underwent slight decline and the defenders didn’t cover him as they used to. He bounced back again although not in same league as in 2009 medio. Still, the first place between Inter sticks belongs to him and virtually no one in Inter could take the place for several years. What a quality for 0 price transfers.

3. Esteban Cambiasso (in : 0, out : ?)

Another masterpiece transfer from Inter. Inter didn’t sweat over the transfer as thanks for broken concept of Los Galacticos by Fiorentino Perez. Perez was notorious for his unappreciative manner to defensive midfielder, manifested concretely by disposing his most important player Makelele. The next year after Makelele sold, Madrid didn’t extend Cambiasso’s contract and Inter got his signature without paying even single penny. The new signing contributed immediately in his first season by forming creative-destructive core in central midfield alongside Veron. Along with Kaka, Cambiasso and Veron were known as the best performing midfielder in 04/05 season. Veron and Kaka moved to other club, but Cambiasso pledged his loyalty to Inter and maintaning his level of performance in high gear for years.

As a defensive midfielder, Cambiasso is a different breed unlike his rivals in the position like Makelele and Gattuso. While both of them played hard and did whatever it took to dispossess their opponent, Cambiasso used gentle approach. His knack of being in correct timing and position allows him to intercept the ball without the risk of suffering foul and yellow card, let alone the red card. He began to lose form for a while when he frequently thrusted forward and acted as attacing midfielder, much to lose the possession cheaply and leaving the defence vulnerable. Still unknown either it was personal initiative of coach (read : Ranieri) instruction. Under Stramaccioni, he returns to his natural domain in pure defensive midfielder and he doesn’t disappoint. Perhaps it would take another few games to regain his confidence and instinct back and he will become world best defensive midfielder once again.

2. Samuel Eto’o (in : -70 mil, out : 15 mil)

The most beneficial trade ever in footbally history. Barca bought Ibrahimovic with cash plus Eto’o which has estimated cost 20 million thus made it 70 million worth transfer. Economically, Eto’o-Ibra trade is best trade ever because quality gap between them was not that far yet Barca cashed in 70 million for Inter. And the best transfer became even more better considering Inter managed to move the jynx to their rival as Ibra always succeed in leading his team to domestic league glory, but the bless is shadowed by his Champion League curse.

Eto’o became a key player in treble glory while Ibra failed hard in Catalan. Eto’o used to be the main goalscorer, but thanks to Mourinho he was willingly demoted to be Milito’s support. It was an utter surprise because Eto’o was known for his selfish character. Next season in 2010/2011, Eto’o singlehandedly propelled Inter to decent position in forgettable season. And then, at the beginning of 2011/2012 season, Anzhi offered 15 million for Eto’o. Of course the offer was too good to be turned down. Imagine, 15 million for 30 years old striker who began to lost his trademark speed. By the time Eto’o left to Russia, he brought the benefits which no one could ever imagine. The total was approximately 85 million cash with 5 trophies. Sweet

But wait, how come the best transfer ever is positioned at 2nd ? Well, the 1st must be so special, isn’t it ?

1. Javier Zanetti (In : 6,5, out : never)

Regardless how many million Euro and trophies Eto’o had brought to Inter, he would never beat Zanetti for the best transfer in Moratti history. Zanetti was the first transfer of Moratti and he was still unknown 21 years old Argentinian right back. Who ever guessed he would be one of the greatest player  ever –if not the greatest- in Internazionale Milano history ? Moratti himself admitted, Zanetti is the best transfer he has ever done. And, considering how much contribution he has given to Inter, 1st is the most appropriate position.

Maybe Zanetti didn’t bring in 75 million like Eto’o did, but he repaid his 6.5 million price tags with 797 caps, captain for 13 consecutive years, and 15 trophies Those were the statistics which any Inter players has never achieved and he still has the chances to add the tallies. Also, it was as if Inter bought 2 or 3 players simultaneously when they bought him. He runs up and down the pitch, sometimes from right flank to left, and he does it without stop. He is capable of playing in fullback, winger, defensive midfielder, and central midfielder. Don’t forget he can play at either flank, makes it 6 positions in total. Also, he rarely succumbs to injury and suspension thus allows him to play almost every match with his trademark outstanding consistency. Besides on-the-pitch contribution, Zanetti also gives off-the-pitch contribution such as exemplary attitude which is very rare in current football world. Simply, he is the dream perfect transfer for every club in the world.