11 stars whose reputations were ruined after moving to England
5. Andy van der Meyde (Everton)
Just as the Toffees fell at the first hurdle in Europe, the ex-Ajax and Inter midfielder failed to live up to expectations
Having made it to the play-off round of the Champions League qualifiers, Everton's signing of midfielder Van der Meyde – who'd shone for the Netherlands at Euro 2004 – appeared to herald the dawning of an exciting new era at Goodison Park.
But just as the Toffees fell at the first hurdle in Europe, the ex-Ajax and Inter midfielder failed to live up to expectations on Merseyside. After just 20 appearances and four miserable years, he was released in 2009. "I left my family and my kids because they weren't in England and I fell in love with somebody else," Van der Meyde later told the BBC, discussing his subsequent troubles with drink and drugs.
"I had problems with my ex-girlfriend and my baby was very sick. I had problems with the gaffer David Moyes and that was all my own fault because I made the wrong choices. At the time I was not thinking straight."
6. Juan Sebastian Veron (Manchester United and Chelsea)
“He’s a f**king great player,” Sir Alex Ferguson politely informed a group of journalists who'd dared to question Veron's ability to adapt to the English game. "And youse are all f**king idiots."
The hacks had a point, though: the Argentine struggled to fit in at Old Trafford following his big-money move from Lazio, despite occasional flashes of genius. His stint at Chelsea was even worse: Veron played just 14 games in all competitions before heading back to Italy in 2004.
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7. Winston Bogarde (Chelsea)
Instead of seeking pastures new, the defender clung on to his hefty £40k per week salary for dear life
Bogarde had previously shone for the likes of Milan and Ajax, and looked like an excellent signing when he arrived in west London in 2000. But after Claudio Ranieri replaced Gianluca Vialli as manager at Stamford Bridge, the Dutchman found himself sidelined.
In a 2015 interview with the Guardian, Bogarde insisted that Chelsea's hard-ball tactics prevented him from joining another club on loan. “A club could not pay my whole salary, they could maybe pay 70%,” he said. “They asked Chelsea to pay the other 30%, and they said: ‘No. If you want to take him it’s going to be 100% or nothing. He is going nowhere.’
“Of course [I would have taken that cut]. For a player, for me, it’s terrible not to play. Yet I had to return for training.”
Instead, the defender clung on to his hefty £40,000-per-week salary and barely played. When his four-year deal eventually expired, Bogarde promptly retired.
8. Steve Marlet (Fulham)
Owner Mohamed Al-Fayed attempted to sue manager Jean Tigana for acquiring Marlet in the first place
Marlet's form after signing for Fulham in 2001 was so atrocious that owner Mohamed Al-Fayed attempted to sue manager Jean Tigana (who was once, briefly, Marlet's agent) for acquiring him in the first place. The charges were later dropped.
Former Lyon forward Marlet, who'd plundered an impressive five Champions League goals before joining the Cottagers, was loaned out to Marseille after netting just 11 times in 54 Premier League matches.