The ten highest release clauses in football after Gavi signs new Barcelona deal
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Barcelona midfielder Gavi has signed a new four-year contract with the club - which includes a massive €1 billion release clause.
The 18-year-old committed his long-term future to the Catalan giants on Wednesday and they're desperate to keep hold of one of their biggest assets.
Clubs are aware of how ludicrous transfer fees are in the modern game and don't want to take any chances. Neymar's move to Paris Saint-Germain is still a sore point at the Camp Nou.
So who is considered the most valuable asset in football? Who is that player their side can't bear to think about life without? In reality, there's five players with a 10-digit release clause. Let's run down the top ten.
=10. Brahim Diaz (AC Milan, on loan from Real Madrid) - €742 million
Probably not the player you'd expect to be kicking off this list. Diaz joined Real from Manchester City in January 2019 with six months left on his contract. The winger was seen as an investment for the future, but he never nailed down a place in the starting XI. He's spent the last two years on loan at AC Milan and won the Serie A title last season.
=10. Luka Modric (Real Madrid) – €742 million
Modric signed a one-year extension in June and the 2018 Ballon d'Or winner is still one of the best in the world at 37-years-old. The oldest player on this list, the Croatia international continues to ooze class. He received a standing ovation in last week's 3-0 victory over Celtic in the Champions League.
=10. Federico Valverde (Real Madrid) – €742 million
Potentially the heir to Modric's throne in central midfield. The 24-year-old improves year after year and scored a stunning goal in Sunday's victory over Real Mallorca. He'll be a fixture in this Real side for years to come.
7. Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid, on loan from Barcelona) – €793 million
This one might not be valid for too much longer. Griezmann joined Atletico on loan from Barcelona last summer after a miserable two years in Catalonia. The France forward has been coming on in the final 30 minutes of Atletico's games this term in an attempt to exploit a loophole in the initial loan agreement. A €25 million fee is close to being agreed however.
6. David Alaba (Real Madrid) – €840 million
Real signing Alaba for free will go down as one of the biggest bargains in modern history. He's been sensational since leaving Bayern Munich and formed a solid partnership with Eder Militao in central defence following the departures of Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane.
=1. Ronald Araujo (Barcelona) – €1 billion
Araujo penned a new deal with Barcelona a few months back and he's someone they couldn't afford to lose. Comfortable on the ball, physical, a leader. Everything you need in a modern centre back. He even roughed up Antonio Rudiger in a pre-season El Clasico. Every Barca fan's favourite player in that split second.
=1. Karim Benzema (Real Madrid) – €1 billion
Putting it bluntly, the likely 2022 Ballon d'Or winner. Benzema has established himself as one of the world's best strikers in recent years and stepped in a big way for Real following Cristiano Ronaldo's departure in 2018. Three goals in four La Liga games so far this season. There's not much else to say.
=1. Ansu Fati (Barcelona) – €1 billion
After a tough few years of injury, Fati looks to be becoming the player we all hoped he would. There's a reason he took Lionel Messi's number 10 shirt. In a stacked Barcelona attack, he still manages to shine.
=1. Pedri (Barcelona) – €1 billion
The 19-year-old is one of Barcelona's most used players in the last three years. He was thrown straight into the first-team at a young age and never looked back.
=1. Gavi (Barcelona) – €1 billion
Another teenager with the world at his feet. He and Pedri started Tuesday's 2-0 defeat to Bayern Munich but were unnerved by the occasion. Seeing them develop will be special.