2021 was an eventful year, to say the least. From a chaotic transfer window that saw both Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi move in a span of days to an exciting summer, packed with international competitions like Copa America and the Euros, the football fraternity witnessed it all. The past year also saw the emergence of multiple superstars, gaining worldwide attention due to their exploits. As a result, the players in question were rewarded with a substantial bump-up in their valuation. On that note, let’s take a look at the 5 biggest market value winners of 2021.
5. Jude Bellingham – €27M to €75M (+€48M)
Hailing from Birmingham City, Jude Bellingham has blossomed into one of the most promising central midfielders of the modern era. In the past two years, the 18-year-old wunderkind has gone from strength to strength, astutely working on his technical skills at Borussia Dortmund. His consistent performances have attracted admiration from all around the world, with even Pep Guardiola showering the talented lad with high praises post their Champions League clash in 2021. As a result, the Englishman is now valued at a whopping €75 million, despite his tender age.
4. Pedri – €30M to €80M (+€50M)
While things have been catastrophic at Barcelona, to say the least, their upcoming crop of promising youngsters has lightened a tiny flame of hope in the hearts of Culers. While players like Gavi and Ansu Fati have impressed emphatically, no one has performed as well as Pedri. In fact, the Spaniard has been one of the most consistent players of the Blaugrana squad, making a mind-boggling 52 appearances in his debut season. The winner of the Kopa Trophy and the Golden Boy award, Pedri has the potential to dig out his club from the trenches of misery.
3. Vincius Junior – €50M to €100M (+€50M)
One of the most improved players this season, Vinicius Junior, has stunned everyone by turning his Real Madrid career in a whiff. The Brazilian forward who was abysmal in front of the goal the last term has now transformed into a lethal finisher, partnering brilliantly with the evergreen Karim Benzema. At the time of writing, Vinicius has 12 goals and nine assists across all competitions, which already overshadows his output of last season. Subsequently, he deservedly received a bumper increase in his market value, making him a member of the prestigious “€100 million” club.
2. Erling Haaland – €100M to €150M (+€50M)
The second Borussia Dortmund player to appear on the list, Erling Haaland, is heavily expected to depart the Bundesliga this summer. The Norwegian sensation has taken the football fraternity ever since he made his professional debut in 2016 for Bryne. At the tender age of 21, Haaland already has 125 goals under his belt, with 76 of them coming for Borussia Dortmund in just 75 games. Touted to break all kinds of goalscoring records, Haaland’s value will surely soar in the coming future, especially with an inevitable move to a superclub on the horizon.
1. Dusan Vlahovic – €16M to €70M (+€54M)
If there was a recognised award for a surprise package in football, Dusan Vlahovic would, hands down, take the 2021 edition home by a landslide. Having signed for Fiorentina in 2018 for less than €2 million, the young forward is now worth a whopping €70 million, with multiple clubs keeping tabs on his whereabouts. After exploding onto the scene with 21 goals in the 2020-21 season, Vlahovic silenced all the doubters calling him a one-season wonder by scoring 18 in the ongoing campaign. A rare talent indeed.