Numerous players are fortunate enough to sign up with big clubs virtually quickly after a World Cup.
That wasn’t always the case, though, and in the past, a few players have made their names known at the Euros or World Cup and received career-defining transfers as a result of such performances.
Following his success at the World Cup, Enzo Fernandez is one of many players who have been mentioned in connection with significant moves in January.
The 21-year-old midfielder, who helped Argentina win the tournament, was named Young Player of the Tournament in Qatar 2022.
We’ve looked at nine players who moved on after shining on the greatest international stage.
Cody Gakpo – PSV to Liverpool, 2023
Prior to the injuries to Diogo Jota and Luis Diaz and the interest from other clubs, Liverpool had no intention of adding a forward to their roster in January.
Gakpo is believed to have agreed to a term through 2028 for a cost between £35 and £45 million.
Cody Gakpo “has all it takes to become a star,” according to Netherlands manager Louis van Gaal during the World Cup, and the forward certainly appears to be on the fast road to the top of the game after continuing his outstanding Eredivisie form in Qatar.
The three goals he scored during the group stage, one with his head, one with his left foot, and one with his right foot, were evidence of his variety, eagerness for the big stage, and quickly improving skill in the final third.
He excelled under Van Gaal as a center forward or a No. 10 who drifted to the right. He has excelled at PSV as a left winger who can cut inside.
Wout Weghorst – Besiktas To Manchester United, 2022
Weghorst left Besiktas on Friday by mutual consent, and he now joins the Red Devils on loan for the remainder of the season.
Due to Burnley’s refusal to include a recall clause in his season-long trade agreement, United has paid the Turkish team £2.6 million in compensation via Burnley, the player’s parent club. At the end of the season, United does not have a buy option.
After scoring just twice in 20 Premier League appearances for Burnley the previous season, Weghorst scored nine goals in 18 games with Besiktas.
His two comeback goals for the Netherlands against Argentina in the World Cup quarterfinal last month are well-known.
James Rodriguez – Monaco To Real Madrid, 2014
Florentino Perez seems to need the newest, shiniest player from every World Cup, as was quickly becoming routine then.
Colombian James Rodriguez, who led all scorers in 2014 with six goals, was pure box office in Brazil. It’s understandable that Madrid approved £63 million for his signing from Monaco after his goal against Uruguay.
Mesut Ozil – Werder Bremen To Real Madrid, 2010
By the time the 2010 World Cup rolled around, Ozil had made just over 100 Bundesliga appearances between Schalke and Werder Bremen, but it was in South Africa that the rest of the world finally sat up and took notice of the playmaker’s incredible toolkit.
Gareth Barry continues to get nightmares about pursuing Ozil’s shadow.
He followed his countryman Khedira at Real Madrid and went on to make 159 appearances in three seasons under Jose Mourinho at the Bernabeu, with 80 assists and 27 goals.
Divock Origi – Lille To Liverpool, 2014
Divock Origi, a Belgian striker, was signed by Liverpool from Lille after the 2014 World Cup.
The 19-year-old spent four years at Lille before signing a five-year deal with the Premier League club for an estimated £10 million.
At the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, Origi participated in each of Belgium’s five games and scored the game-winning goal against Russia in the group stage.
Edinson Cavani – Palermo to Napoli, 2010
After continuing to shine at the 2010 FIFA World Cup, where he assisted Uruguay in reaching the semifinals and scored in the 3-2 loss to Germany in the third-place play-off, Cavani agreed to a new four-year contract with Palermo.
Napoli acquired Cavani in a July 2010 signing. The transfer, however, involved a €5 million loan and a €12 million option/obligation to acquire the property outright, for a total sum of €17 million.
Cavani scored twice in his first start for Napoli after making his team debut as a substitute in the previous match, helping Napoli defeat Elfsborg 2-0 and advance to the main event.
Gilberto Silva – Atletico Mineiro to Arsenal, 2002
Numerous coaches were impressed by Gilberto’s performance during the 2002 FIFA World Cup.
Gilberto declared that he wanted to transfer to England because “playing against the likes of David Beckham again” would be amazing.
Arsenal and Aston Villa of the FA Premier League took the lead in the race to capture him.
Gilberto joined Arsenal on their preseason tour of Austria in August while still under contract to Atlético Mineiro; although he had not yet committed to Arsenal, the transaction appeared to be moving forward.
However, issues emerged when Atlético Mineiro was placed under a transfer embargo because some players at the club, including Gilberto, had not received their unpaid salary.
Angel Di Maria – Benfica to Real Madrid, 2010
Real Madrid announced on their website on June 28, 2010, that they had reached an agreement with Benfica for Di Mara’s transfer.
One day later, the Portuguese Stock Exchange’s regulatory body said that he had signed a five-year deal worth €25 million plus €11 million in bonuses.
Di Mara traveled directly from Buenos Aires to Madrid on July 7, 2010, and on July 8 she passed the medical examination.
In the 23-man roster for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, Diego Maradona, the manager of Argentina, chose Di Mara on May 19, 2010.
Di Mara scored his first goal for his country on May 24 against Canada in a 5-0 friendly victory.
He participated in all five of Argentina’s games during the World Cup and started four of them, assisting Argentina in reaching the quarterfinals.
El Hadji Diouf – Lens To Liverpool, 2002
El Hadji Ousseynou Diouf, a former Senegalese professional footballer, was born on January 15, 1981.
Diouf played as a winger or a forward during his career.
He was apparently connected with English club Liverpool in early June 2002, who had also just signed Salif Diao, his countryman’s club and international teammate.
The news first surfaced after his Man of The Match performance in the opening 1-0 group match of the FIFA World Cup 2002 against France, the reigning World and European Champions and one of the tournament favorites.