Top footballers can earn some eye-watering sums after signing for a new club, but it appears that a staggering weekly wage is no longer enough to beat off competition for the best talent.
It’s known that some clubs will offer a player’s family accommodation, put their children through a local school or even buy them cars – but some have not been afraid to put their hands in their pocket to ensure a star’s signature.
Last month David Silva was reportedly offered a private jet and a luxury Roman home by Lazio as he prepared to leave Manchester City on a free transfer. With plenty of clubs set to queue up to secure the Spaniard, it seems the Serie A side were keen to steal a march on the suitors.
Sportsmail has rounded up five of football’s most outlandish and ludicrous offers and demands to sweeten a deal.
Despite recently becoming embroiled in controversy and jailed over a passport fraud, Ronaldinho was once the most sought-after player in world football – and even towards the end of his playing days some clubs were still desperate to have a player of his reputation and quality on their books.
But one club certainly went the extra mile in 2014 as the Brazilian weighed up a move to Mexico. Top flight outfit Queretaro made a stunning offer with massive incentives to convince the two-time FIFA World Player of the Year to join.
They threw in a mansion with their proposal of a two-year deal – which came with four butlers. If that wasn’t enough, Ronaldinho was also able to enjoy a 7-a-side pitch and a beach at the property.
However, despite the club’s efforts, the World Cup winner only opted to stay with them for one season – terminating his contract despite having a year left on his deal with the Liga MX outfit.
Not quite the signing on fee you might expect to be included in a contract. Moise Kean’s father Biorou acted as his son’s agent when he signed his first deal with Juventus in 2016.
The Old Lady reportedly agreed to give the family a fleet of tractors alongside his €700,000-a-year salary to help Biorou with his agriculture business, but he claims the club later overturned their decision to offer the incentive.
An enraged Kean Snr threatened the Italian giants by saying Moise would run down his contract at the club and leave on a free.
‘Juventus offered a contract of €700,000-a-year, which was fine, but the problem is they had also promised me some tractors for my agricultural business in the Ivory Coast, but now they say there is no budget for them,’ he said in 2017.
‘I own several hectares of land in the Ivory Coast which I would like to cultivate with rice and corn. I’m an agronomist. I asked for agricultural materials and they told me “no problem”.
‘However, the other day, Juve’s lawyer contacted me to tell me that the contract offer had been revoked because my requests were out of their means.’
At the time it Kean was still 18, so he still required his parents permission before signing a new contract.
Kean eventually became the first player born in the 2000s to appear in one of Europe’s five major leagues when he made his debut against Pescara in November 2016. Three days later he broke the same record in the Champions League when he came off the bench against Sevilla.
Kean went on to sign for Everton in 2019 for £27.5million – where he has struggled to fit in despite huge expectations.
While the forward has moved on from Juventus, his father is said to be still chasing his original club for the tractors.
Tottenham offered Paul Gascoigne all sorts of incentives to join White Hart Lane over Manchester United in 1988, with chairman Irving Scholar and manager Terry Venables desperate to land the talented midfielder.
Spurs had already agreed to buy his family a new house – something United could not afford to do – and Gascgoine tested his luck by asking for a new BMW for the garage. Again, the club agreed to his conditions.
With Spurs already being incredibly generous, he put in one last request – this time telling Scholar he wanted a new sunbed for his sister Lindsay in order to get the deal over the line.
Gascoigne told Sky Sports’ Fantasy Football Club in 2015: ‘I went to Irving Scholar: “Can my dad have a car?” And he said: “OK” and so I said: “Right, I am definitely coming now and I am on my way!” Then the phone went again, it was Lindsay and it was classic: “Paul, if mum is getting a house and dad is getting a car, I want a sunbed”.
‘So can you imagine me ringing Irving and saying: “Listen, I will definitely sign now, the deal is on, but can I have a sun bed thrown in as well?!” And he went: “Just make your way here will you? It is done”. And I went to Lindsay: “I’ve got your sunbed!”‘.
After the club agreed to his terms, ‘Gazza’ went on to make 112 appearances for the Lilywhites, scoring 33 times and winning the FA Cup in 1991 after smashing in a famous free-kick against rivals Arsenal in the semi-final.
Congolese midfielder Rolf-Christel Guie-Mien moved from Karlsruher to Eintracht Frankfurt in 1999, but the bizarre terms on offer were far from a snazzy sports car or multi-million pound house.
Instead, the midfielder signed on the dotted line after agreeing to a contract stating his wife would receive cooking lessons paid for by the club.
Who knows if she had a passion for cooking, or if Guie-Mien just wanted to improve her culinary skills for his own benefit.
It appears the club agreed to the strange demands as he went on to stay for three years, playing 95 times before heading to Frieburg in 2003.
Japan legend Keisuke Honda signed for Brazilian side Botafogo this year – but had concerns about moving to Rio De Janiero, which is one of the most dangerous cities in the world.
His worries are understandable, with an average of 39 murders for every 100,000 people, and the club came up with an idea to persuade him – providing him with an armoured vehicle to keep him safe.
The Japan international accepted the deal and the club unveiled him on Twitter in January by depicting him as a character on Pokemon using an old school Gameboy.
The midfielder, who is a legend for his country after earning 98 caps, has enjoyed a globetrotting career and has featured for eight different clubs across four continents.
He is well known for turning out for CSKA Moscow for three years, playing 127 times for the Russian outfit, before joining AC Milan in 2014 – where he played until 2017.