From a return on investment perspective, Robert Lewandowski to Bayern Munich may be the single most lucrative transfer in the history of football. Originally signed from Borussia Dortmund on a free, the Polish international striker moved to FC Barcelona last summer after eight long years in the Bavarian capital, winning eight Bundesliga titles and a Champions League crown along the way.
Lewandowski’s cost to performance ratio is effectively undefined, since he signed for free and scored an insane number of goals in his time at the club. However, selling him to Barcelona will end up being plenty lucrative for Bayern in the long run.
According to Bild, Barca paid a 45m base fee and promised 5m in bonuses to sign the striker last summer. Those bonuses were always assumed to be “easily achievable.” Now, we’ve found out how achievable they really are. Here’s how it breaks down:
- For each season Robert Lewandowski scores at least 25 goals for FC Barcelona, Bayern will receive 1.25 million euros.
- The goals may be scored in all competitions, so Barca’s elimination from the Champions League will not affect the bonuses.
With the way Lewy has adjusted to life in Spain, those bonuses are looking quite easy right now. With Saturday’s 1-0 over Valencia, the former Bayern striker has taken his season tally to 18 goals already — just seven more and he’ll trigger his first set of bonuses this season. Ironically, sending him down to the Europa League even helps Bayern financially, as Lewy is much more likely to score against club’s closer to Barca’s level, rather than the serious teams you find in the Champions League.
Overall, Lewandowski lags only behind Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus as the most expensive over-30 signing in history (depending on how you count Pjanic). While nothing he does will bring his transfer fee up to that level, it still looks like a good bit of business for Bayern Munich, who are still scoring plenty of goals in his absence.