5. Roberto Soldado

Real Madrid's Roberto Soldado (L) celebr

Roberto Soldado came through the B team at Real Madrid and after impressing during his four years with them, he was promoted to the Los Blancos senior team. However, his stint with them was not the best for him as he was not given regular minutes on the pitch and eventually left them in 2008 to Getafe after numerous loan spells.

The Spaniard went on to make a name for himself after leaving Madrid, especially at Valencia where he netted 81 goals in 141 appearances. However, since then he failed to live up to his promise at Tottenham Hotspur and Villarreal, and is now currently plying his trade at Turkish club, Fenerbahce.

Appearances: 27

Goals: 4

Trophies won: 1

4. Wesley Sneijder

Wesley Sneijder

One of the greatest midfielders in Dutch history, Wesley Sneijder joined Real Madrid in 2007 after five-years at Ajax, where he emerged as the best young talent in the world. The 35-year-old enjoyed an impressive debut campaign, but an serious injury limited his gametime in the second season.

He was soon sold by the Los Blancos to Inter Milan in 2009 where he established himself as one of the best in the world, leading the Italians to the treble which included the 2010 Champions League trophy.

Since being sold by the Bernabeu based club, Sneijder has bookmarked his name as one of the best midfielders in the history of the sport.

Appearances: 66

Goals: 11

Trophies won: 1

3. Arjen Robben

Arjen Robben

Arjen Robben arrived at Bernabeu in 2007 on the back of brilliant performances for Chelsea and made an immediate impact for his new club, netting five goals in 28 appearances, helping them win the La Liga title.

Despite having another impressive 2008 season with the Los Blancos, he was deemed surplus to requirements at the Bernabeu in 2009, following the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo and Kaka. It can be argued that it is one of the biggest mistakes made by Florentino Perez as Robben went on to win innumerable honours at Bayern Munich.

Without doubt of the best wingers in the world and a gamechanger on the pitch, the 35-year-old, spent 10 successful seasons in Germany, before eventually retiring in 2019.

 

Appearances: 65

Goals: 13

Trophies won: 2

2. Samuel Eto’o

Samuel Eto''o of Real Madrid

One player that got away was Samuel Eto’o who came through Real Madrid’s youth academy and while promoted to the senior side, he was not seen as good enough and hence sold to Mallorca.

The Cameroonian though showed just how wrong his former employers were going on to become one of the most important players for both Barcelona and Inter Milan, with whom he won back-to-back trebles.

The 38-year-old was at his best between 2004 to 2010, where he scored a combined 183 goals in 301 games across spells in Spain and Italy. Since then, Eto’o traveled the world and was last seen playing for Qatar SC in the Middle East.

 

Appearances: 7

Goals: 0

Trophies won: 0

1. Claude Makelele

Fussball: CL 02/03, Real Madrid - Borussia Dortmund 2:1

So good, that there is a position on the pitch commonly named after him, Claude Makele was the engine room of the Real Madrid squad between 2000-2003, during which his influence was vital as he led the club to seven trophies.

Makelele went unheard of among the ‘Galacticos’ at the club, which he thrived on, but not Florentino Perez who felt he was too unglamorous for the image of the Los Blancos. Perez’s decision to sell him was questioned by both Zinedine Zidane and Fernando Hierro and it was soon seen as it was the end of the cycle of success for the club during that era.

Since his departure, the Frenchman went on to star for Chelsea, becoming the backbone of the team from which Jose Mourinho took them to success. Makelele is widely considered as arguably the best defensive midfielder since the turn of the Millenium and one that was rightly missed by the Los Blancos.

 

Appearances: 140

Goals: 1

Trophies won: 7

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