Looking back at the four disappointing signings Real Madrid made in the 04/05 season


Real Madrid have achieved remarkable success in recent times.

The Spanish giants have won the Champions League in four of the last five seasons - a truly incredible feat.

Real Madrid are the most successful club in the history of the competition, winning the European Cup on 13 occasions.

However, Los Blancos failed to reach a Champions League final for 12 years after being Valencia in 2002.

They certainly weren't shy of spending in that period.

Club president Florentino Perez was the man behind the Galactico era, signings household names like Zinedine Zidane, Ronaldo and David Beckham.

In the 2004/05 season, however, Perez got it completely wrong.

The four signings

Real Madrid raided Roma for their best defender and looked to the Premier League to strengthen their squad in 2004.

Walter Samuel - (Roma, £22.5m)

The 26-year-old Argentine centre-back became Real Madrid's most expensive defender of all-time after impressing in Serie A.

He failed to establish himself at the Bernabeu after some underwhelming performances and made just 30 La Liga appearances.

Real Madrid v Bayer Leverkusen

Real took a €10 million hit on Samuel, selling him to Inter Milan 12 months after signing him.

Jonathan Woodgate - (Newcastle, £16.5m)

The English centre-back is widely regarded as one of the worst signings in the club's history.

Woodgate was plagued by injury problems, finally making his competitive debut for Real Madrid 13 months after arriving.

He scored an own goal and was sent off on his long-awaited debut against Athletic Bilbao - and that match summed up his Real Madrid career.

Real Madrid v Athletic Bilbao

Woodgate managed only nine La Liga appearances in three years before signing for Middlesbrough.

Michael Owen - (Liverpool, £10.6m)

The young Liverpool striker completed a "dream" when he joined Real Madrid but later admitted that it turned into a "horror story".

Owen was unable to settle in Madrid and found himself behind Raul and Ronaldo in the pecking order.

He stayed only one season before returning to the Premier League with Newcastle United.

Thomas Gravesen - (Everton, £3m)

Signed in the January transfer window, The Danish midfielder is undoubtedly one of the strangest signings in Real Madrid history.

Thomas Gravesen Signs For Real Madrid

Gravesen had spent five unremarkable years at Everton and eyebrows were raised when the biggest spenders in European football moved for him.

Benched early on, the 28-year-old had a training ground scuffle with Robinho, was unpopular with the fans and was publicly criticised by manager Fabio Capello.

Gravesen was sold to Celtic 18 months later.

Four truly tragic signings.

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