From zero to 34 million euros - Manolas’ meteoric rise
Kostas Manolas goes from zero to 34 million euros after agreeing to join Napoli in a new career challenge.
Kostas Manolas, labeled “the Greek God in Rome” after his breathtaking goal in the 2017/18 UEFA Champions League, began his career as the nephew of Stelios Manolas. However, his meteoric rise to emerge as one of Europe’s elite defenders has been rewarding, both professionally and financially.
Every summer for the last few years, there were murmurs of Manolas earning a move to Europe’s top clubs but nothing materialised after the fast, tough-tackling, clever, and powerful centre-back ‘toyed’ with potential moves.
Manolas managed to break away from his uncle’s shadow at a relatively young age, and by the age of 28 has earnt a 34 million euro dream move to Napoli. He left AEK in bad circumstances after the Enosi were experiencing severe financial issues, but even from then his talent was evident. His form at Olympiacos went to a new level and he never stayed at the Reds for a long time as his star qualities were too good to ignore for a Euopean contender (at the time in Roma).
His sensational 2013/14 season at Olympiacos led to a 15 million euro move to the Serie A. This also came off the back of being a standout performer for the Ethniki in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. His move to a perceived stronger league saw Manolas step up and become a regular fixture in the squad.
Moves to giants such as Manchester United, Juventus, Barcelona, and Arsenal never materialised, however, in December 2017 Manolas agreed to a new deal with Roma which saw his release clause rise to a whopping 35 million euros. Prior to this, he seriously considered a move to FC Zenit but it fell through at the final stages.
Napoli gained Manolas’ services with a 34 million euro bid on the 27th of June, 2019, but this move also saw Amadou Diawara move the other way to Roma. This player is also valued at around 18 million euro. The move to Napoli was made official on the 30th of June, 2019.
Manolas leaves Roma at the right time after the Giallorossi are experiencing a sharp decline after a successful five-year cycle. He was often the ‘rock’ and key player as things began to fall apart, and had to carry the team at various stages. On the other hand, Napoli are a genuine contender after finishing second in last season’s Serie A for the second successive season. He will be able to form one of the best centre-back pairings in world football with Kalidou Koulibaly.
Napoli’s President, Aurelio De Laurentiis, was worried about Manolas’ character but his strong defensive ability was too good to refuse and now as he enters the prime of his career, it is hoped he helps take the club to the next level.
Manolas will earn a reported 4.5 million euros per season and all of a sudden, he has gone from zero to 34 million euros in a career with endless highs.