Real Madrid: The five players who should never have been sold in the last 10 years

Real Madrid, Cristiano Ronaldo (Photo credit should read PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Cristiano Ronaldo (Photo credit should read PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images) /
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Angel Di Maria with Real Madrid
Ángel Di María of Real Madrid during the 2014 UEFA Champions League final (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images) /

Ángel Di María (2010-2014)

He won it all in his four seasons at Real Madrid: the Champions League, La Liga, and the Copa del Rey. Ángel Di María was signed from Benfica in 2010 for a fee of €25 million.

While at Real Madrid, Di María was deployed as a winger, a wide midfielder (under Mourinho), or as an attacking-minded central midfielder in a midfield three (under Carlo Ancelotti during the 2013-14 season).

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This showed how versatile he was for Real as he could play down either flank.

Di María was actually like an ‘angel’ for Real Madrid. He had the ability to decide matches with a single-foot, as his gem of a left foot created chances for other players to feed on. His crosses were pinpoint and whether they came from the left wing or the right didn’t matter as he was a cognoscente.

He would also use his innate ability to slalom past defenders and score solo goals that would leave the fans dazzled.

He played a primordial role in the historic 2011-12 La Liga triumph, even though his performances at the beginning of the season were pedestrian. Not only that, his final season with the club saw him hit lofty standards, as he was crucial in the Copa del Rey final win over Barcelona and won the Man of the Match award for the UEFA Champions League Final in 2014, running the defense ragged as Real won 4-1 against their noisy neighbors Atlético Madrid.

The former Benfica prodigy scored 36 goals and had 85 assists to his name in 194 appearances. Had his relationship with the big heads in the Real Madrid hierarchy not turned sour, he could have still been wearing the white jersey.