Leovac, Sabo, Jairo, possibly Cimirot and Antonis, and Garry Rodrigues. These players are “unknown” to the Greek fans. These are the transfer choices of Frank Arnesen which can be proven exceptional for PAOK or may not.
SDNA introduces Frank Arnesen's moves in the previous transfer windows in “low-quality” markets which, however, proved to be great decisions.
Frank Arnesen decided to quit football at the age of 32 and he was influenced by Sir Bobby Robson when he was at PSV. Since 1994 till 2004, Arnesen was the technical director at PSV and still his name is being mentioned within the club.
Arnesen was the one who brought the Brazilian star Ronaldo to Europe when he was not the recognised world-class player. Also he spotted the talent of Ruud van Nistelrooy, Jap Stam and Arjen Robben. These names indicate that his quality in spotting talents is decent.The 16-year-old Eidur Gudjohnsen
From very early on at PSV Arnesen showed his qualities in the job. He bought from Cruzeiro someone who was called Luis Nazario de Lima Ronaldo. The phenomenon. We don't have to say too much about him.
But this was not his only terrific move. During the same transfer window he brings a 16-year-old Icelandic striker from Valur. Many described him as a “fisherman”, however in the future he proved to be a goalscoring machine.
Apart from the transfer at PSV, two more young players came through the academy, such as Wilfred Bouma and Boudewijn Zenden.The revelations of Stam and Cocu
Next season Frank Arnesen reinforced PSV with Dutch players. He picked from Willem the 23-year-old defender Jap Stam and he also signed Philip Cocu as a free agent from Vitesse.Lyngby winger Rommedahl
During the transfer window of 1996-97 season Arnesen decided to turn to his country for talents. He signed from Denmark the 18-year-old attacking midfielder Dennis Rommedahl. Rommedahl, who played in Greece for Olympiakos as well, was one of Arnesen's transfers which paid off.Van Nistelrooy and Kolkka
In 1998 Arnesen bought another Willem player. This time a 24-year-old Finnish attacking midfielder. Jonas Kolkka signed for free at PSV and he became one of their best players. Later he moved to Greece to sign for Panathinaikos.
During the same transfer window Arnesen spent 6 million euros acquiring from Heerenveen the 22-year-old Dutch striker Ruud van Nistelrooy who made a great career in the European football.The sale of Vogel
The new PAOK sporting director always liked to spot talent and buy players from small transfer markets. In 1999 he looked in Serbia and signed as a free agent the 26-year-old Radnicki goalkeeper Ivica Kralj.
However the big deal of Frank Arnesen was the Swiss defensive midfielder Johan Vogel. The 22-year-old has been playing in Grasshoppers and he signed for free at PSV. PSV sold him six years later to Milan with a fee in the region of 5 million euros.
Moreover, during the same transfer window, the 22-year-old Dutch midfielder Mark van Bommel signed at PSV from Fortuna Sittard.The rising star Mateja Kezman
Arnesen moved into the same path in 2000 transfer window as well. He bought a young striker from Serbia and yet another talent from Fortuna Sittard. The Serbian was the 21-year-old striker Mateja Kezman and the Dutch defender named as Kevin Hofland.Robben, Ji-Sung Park and Huntelaar
The 2002-2003 summer transfer window was maybe the best of Frank Arnesen along with his first at PSV. The Danish sporting director spotted the talent of 21-year-old South Korean midfielder Ji-Sung Park, who later joined Manchester United. In the same transfer window Arnesen enquiried over the 22-year-old Groningen winger Arjen Robben. Finally Robben moved to PSV for 4 million euros. Also in 2002, Klaas Jan Huntelaar came through the academies into the first PSV squad.The Boldklubben defender Michael Jakobsen
During next season's transfer market window Arnesen did not spend too much. He signed for free the 18-year-old Boldklubben defender Michael Jakobsen and he also brought from the PSV academy the 17-year-old winger Ibrahim Afellay. After a decade at PSV, Arnesen left the club because of Gus Hiddink.The step to Tottenham and the Hungarian market
Frank Arnesen's talent as a sporting director was already known. Therefore he moved to Tottenham in 2004. At Spurs he stayed for only one season as he moved to Chelsea the year later.
During his spell at Tottenham he bought a young Hungarian 21-year-old MTK goalkeeper, Marton Fulop, who later joined Manchester City and he also had a spell in Greece with Asteras Tripolis.
Also at Spurs he brought a player from the Dutch market, which he knew perfectly. Mounir El Hamdaoui joined Tottenham from Excelsior, who later made a career playing at Ajax, Malaga and Fiorentina.
In the summer of 2005, Frank Arnesen is pictured along with Roman Abramovich who signs the Danish sporting director at Chelsea.Stoch from Nitra and Mikel from Lyn
At Chelsea, Arnesen continued to buy from Serbia as the OFK Beograd defender Slobodan Rajkovic joined the Blues. In 2006 the Nigerian midfielder John Obi Mikel moved to Stamford Bridge from the Norwegian club Lyn. During the same transfer window, Arnesen signs the 18-year-old Slovakian winger Miroslav Stoch from Nitra, who joined the Chelsea Reserve Squad and later on he proved his skills in the first squad as well.Kosice defensive midfielder Nemanja Matic
In 2007 Arnesen spotted in Chile the talent of Audax 18-year-old striker Franco Di Santo, who is currently playing at Werder Bremen. However, one of his best choices at Chelsea was the Lokomotiv Moscow defender Branislav Ivanovic.
Undoubtedly, one of the best Arnesen's revelations was the Kosice 19-year-old defensive midfielder Nemanja Matic who later moved to Chelsea and at the time being is one of the best defensive midfielders around.A Latvian striker from Poland
In 2010 Arnesen quits his role at Chelsea and next year, in February 2011 he moves to HSV as a sporting director. During his first year he brought plenty of young players from Chelsea and in 2012 he bought talents from Poland.
Arnesen bought the Lech Poznan striker Artjoms Rudnevs, who proved to be a revelation and this summer he nearly signed at PAOK.
In January 2014 Metalist convince Arnesen to join them and he moves to Kharkiv, however his spell there did not last for long because of the war.
Now at PAOK, Arnesen has followed the same steps bringing players from Croatia (Leovac), Slovakia (Sabo, Jairo) and Sweden (Olsen) and he's very close to sign a player from Australia (Antonis) and Bosnia (Cimirot). His previous success indicates that Arnesen knows...