On Tuesday, Spanish champions Barcelona confirmed the signing of former Tottenham and Portsmouth midfielder/forward Kevin Prince-Boateng on loan from Italian side Sassuolo.
The transfer raised eyebrows around the football world with many questioning Barca’s reasoning behind the signing of a 31-year old who has been at nine clubs previous to his arrival at the Camp Nou.
Even Boateng himself who will play as a backup to Luis Suarez in the number nine position outlined that he is well aware he will not be starting many games for the Catalan side.
“But I know I have not come to play in the starting line-up because there are incredible players in this team. I’m here because of my experience and to help.”
As the football world scratches their collective heads let’s take a look at four other equally bizarre transfers from the last number of years.
1) Julian Faubert (West Ham – Real Madrid)
The mother of all eyebrow raisers, Julien Faubert’s loan move from West Ham to European giants Real Madrid will forever be etched in history as potentially the most bizarre transfer of all time.
Faubert had been far from impressive during his time at Upton Park but was recommended to Madrid, after they, in search of a backup right-winger, failed in their pursuit of then Wigan Athletic standout Antonio Valencia.
The Frenchman only appeared twice for Real and is better remembered for falling asleep on the bench during their game against Villarreal and missing training because he thought he had the day off.
He did, however, have quite a strong campaign upon his return to West Ham but will forever be remembered for his fleeting spell at the Bernabeu.
2) Nicklas Bendtner (Arsenal – Juventus)
A cult hero at Arsenal but not the most prolific frontman Arsene Wenger ever signed Nicklas Bendtner’s loan move to Juventus in 2012 is still considered one of those “remember when” moments that will be discussed for years to come.
We all due respect to Bendtner he did have a mildly successful loan spell at Sunderland the season before his move to Turin, scoring eight goals in 28 Premier League games and finishing as the Black Cats’ top scorer.
Bendtner made 11 appearances in what turned out to be a disastrous move to the Old Lady, as he ended up scoring no goals and during a spell out injured was arrested for drink driving before returning to Arsenal.
3) Carlos Tevez & Javier Mascherano ( Corinthians – West Ham)
Two of the most bizarre signings in Premier League history but, the signing of Tevez especially, can be looked back upon as a massive help for West Ham with the Argentine’s goals going towards them avoiding the drop.
The pair were owned by a third party group, something that is outlawed under Premier League rules, and West Ham were subsequently fined a record £5.5 million by the Premier League for the transfers.
Seeing two of South American football’s hottest properties show up at Upton Park was unquestionably as bizarre as it was entertaining but their arrival and Tevez’s goals essentially relegated Sheffield United whom the Hammers had to pay a reported £20 million to in compensation over five seasons.
Both went on to have incredibly successful careers at some of European football’s biggest clubs.
4) Robinho (Real Madrid – Manchester City)
The signing that showed the footballing world that Manchester City’s new big money investors were for real, nobody could quite believe it when Real’s Brazilian superstar Robinho made the move to the then City of Manchester Stadium.
Robinho had expected to move to Chelsea during the summer transfer window of 2008, with the deal to City being concluded without a medical or the Brazilian even knowing the personal terms of his contract.
In fairness to the striker, he had quite a successful start to his first season in English football and finished the campaign with 14 Premier League goals, including a hattrick against Stoke City.
His second season, however, was marred with injury and he ended up leaving the newly minted Manchester City on loan in the January transfer window.