Athletic: Real Madrid’s buy-back clause for Jimenez is incremental – the figures

By Ben Dixon -

Following AC Milan’s signing of Alex Jimenez, there has been some insight gained into his future clauses, and one of the most notable ones is Real Madrid’s buy-back clause, and a report has offered some information into the figures.

Last night, it was made official that Alex Jimenez will join Milan on a four-year deal, but something that has remained hanging over the deal is how it would be structured. In recent months, it has become increasingly likely he will sign permanently for the club, but how long is permanent?

With the signing, there has been knowledge about a clause inserted into a sale that would allow Real to buy the Spaniard back at a fee agreed upon between the two clubs, which is often a commodity with young players leaving Los Blancos, but the actual figures have remained unknown.

Until last night, when The Athletic (via Milan Eye on X) reported that the Spanish club can buy the full-back as early as next summer for only €9 million – a €4m increase on the fee the Rossoneri paid. Additionally, after another 12 months, this figure will rise again to around €12m.

Of course, this is a less-than-ideal situation, and if Jimenez continues to progress at the rate he has, this option could remain hanging over the Diavolo’s heads.

Tags AC Milan Alex Jimenez


  1. Who does these kinds of businesses in Milan management.

    If he clicks and turns into a gem, he would go back to Madrid for far less his value then.

    Looks like Milan is now a development agency for Madrid.

  2. The direction is good but the value is not.

    If there’s buyback clause it shouldn’t be too low and only valid for one season. If not, the buyback should be increased for each season. That’s good.

    But the value shouldn’t be too low.

    The buyback for 1st season, for a player like him bought for 5m, should be about 12-15m. And if there’s 2nd season, meaning there is more development on him, should be at least 20m.

    9ml-12m is too fkin low, we can only hope Jimenez will reject when Madrid decide to activate the buyback.

  3. Milan can’t bring him back if there is no that clause.

    Not all players will come back to Madrid, like Brahim Diaz. Who is bench player and maybe soon will want to leave to gain first team experience again

  4. This club has become a joke. We develop players for Real Madrid now ? For what ? For 5 million profit ? This is a joke ? We have no dignity, no ambitions anymore ? I’m so disappointed by this management…

    1. Haha even Monza will probably have bigger income in young Maldini clause, this news is really a joke, Milan becoming satellite club of Real

      Spending millions on their own youth teams, trainings, development etc just to buy players from Real to develop him for them

    1. Yes, if the news is true there’s only clause for summer 2025 and summer 2026. Outside of that period, there will be new negotiation between Madrid, Milan, and the player.

      After 2026/27 season start there’s no clause anymore so Madrid will need to negotiate from scratch.

  5. I would have said this was fake news but it’s coming from the Athletic. This is a horrible buy back clause to have. Basically if he so much as develops past $10 (a solid possibility) Real would be able to buy him back below market value 🤦‍♂️

  6. So I am running a team of operators.

    One comes to me and says, “If we don’t do X then we will go down and lose millions a minute ”

    I’m no longer skilled enough to evaluate the analysis directly. I ask him what the investment (time, money opportunity cost) will be. He admits he doesn’t know.

    We get him a gal who who evals his assessment. He is right there is risk there. But the likelihood it happens is pretty low.

    We also got them a biz person and they worked up a simple financial model.

    3 days later I decide to do nothing and thus accept the risk. Note it was an explicit decision, not dithering. Instead we make a much smaller investment in our ability to react to these adverse events quickly and effectively.

    The event the guy was concerned about never materialized, but many others did. Over time our ability to react better and prevent more likely events from occuring allowed the business (and all of us who were share holders in this startup) to make a substantial monetary gain. (Note there were far more important contirb factors than just my teams capabilities)

    So what is the point?

    The engineer knew he didnt have perfect info. I knew I didn’t have perfect info. Together we realized we needed a couple others to give us _good enough_ info to make a key decision.

    We as fans have limited information.

    We see the games but not training.

    We see the finances but not the myriad of choices made to arrive at them.

    We see the player but have no idea if he just met the partner of his dreams or is quietly battling an undisclosed illness.

    We see headlines about Lukaku/Abraham/etc but have no way to understand veracity.

    We see Jimenez and think OMG RM can buy him back. The MGMT don’t see just that. They see a pool of players of which 5% have a chance to make the first team and maybe one every three years to have an impact.

    So they hedge. They buy down the risk on one asset with a buy back clause in order to acquire or retain other promising assets. Jimenez, Camarda, Zaroli, etc are all one bad teen decision from never playing again.

    They are one devastating injury from never playing again. And, several injuries away from not being able to fulfill their potential.

    They are one girlfriend away from losing their focus and stunting their development.

    All of that risk must be managed at a financial level or the club would be Spezia with a big budget and much embarrassment on how they employ it.

    So, for those who are here as fans rather than sh*te-posters I invite you to level up your thinking from the engineer to the director level. Provide more analysis and, when available, facts.

    Martin, Barts, ACM1899, Dejan IKWYDLS are folks I follow here and learn from. We need more of them.

    In financial terms, U23 is a farm where most players will go to see there careers die. Why? Reasons above or they simply hit their ceiling and it was not high enough like my kid. Instead of putting $120 into an Osimhen we spend the same money and have 4 years operating a farm where we may get a Camarda or a Jimenez or a Simic or … Along the way we can sell some to cover the costs. Now the risk is spread across many players with many profiles and many potentials. The potential is far greater than on injury prone star.

    But that risk must be managed across a pool of opportunity. Not in the player of the day.

    To my eyes our Milan is a long term project of building financial health to rival RM while assembling a team to meet them in UCL in the next few years.

    And continuing to meet them there for decades to come.

    Look no further than both RM and little Atalanta to see this is exactly what is going on on different scales with absolute excellence. Risk management.

    Jerry simply pulled back the curtain for us to see what is happening a bit more.

    1. “Reasons above or they simply hit their ceiling and it was not high enough like my kid”. Username checks out lol 😅

      All jokes aside, your overall point make sense. But remember there’s a quality-price tradeoff. Oshimen is 120m because he’s on average, all else equal, would guarantee a certain return. Those 20m purchases we made last year should get you some certainties but not as much as an 80m midfielder (in theory). Though I find the sweet spot for mids is around 40-60m for proper quality. Anything over is over bidding.
      That being said, the jury is still out for the value we got for some of them (last year’s signings). We got more value for money for Puli, about right for Reijnders and below for Musah. Jovic and Okafor imo were good value for money based on return. RLC I still don’t know what to say. That’s imo. So that’s one aspect, but from a squad construction perspective we didn’t do a good job. The midfield lacks steel (which I’m hoping they address this year). So while on the face they risk manage well, the other side that’s more difficult to measure is squad construction and technical quality (both which we lost in some measure). The other side to that argument too is quality dilution. We can replace a player with 2 or 3 other players but never replace the technical skillset (Kessie and Tonali for instance). While we can adjust our game to suit the new players ofc but some technical skills are needed and if not replaced can cause a poorer overall game.

      For the specific example of Jiminez it’s particularly frustrating as we’ve seen his quality so we know what he can become quite quickly. If this was some player we didn’t know and was a deal in the background then ppl probably wouldn’t bat an eye. It would have just been ‘another youth’. But he’s somewhat a known quantity. The increase in the clause over the duration of the contract seems to indicate a low growth rate for the player too. In some sense it disincentivises us to develop the player beyond a certain value as RM can buy back below market value. But it’s the risk as you said. I’m only saying that on the ‘positive’ side. If he flops, RM still has the upper hand doesn’t need to redeem..leaving us with that ‘loss’. However, this might have been the best deal we could have made without having RM just take him back altogether and tell us eff off.

      1. I see last year two ways.

        * Depth in squad – prepare to compete on two or more fronts.
        * Improvement – we secured 2nd in Scudetto race

        Most say it takes a year to adapt. Following that wisdom we can already expect great things from the current squad.

        The other side of rish management is knowing when to invest big in a single idea. I believe we were intentionally positioned for this. I expect to see 2 big signings this year in DM and ST. I also expect some more spreading of the risk in that 15 to 20m you mention.

        A problem I see is that there simply are not exceptional quality DM and ST on the market. (I see Osimhen as damaged goods)

        I like Zirkzee but he is not the profile coming out of Milan. Sesko is no longer on the market.

        So the prudent (speaking biz not passion) thing to do will be to sit tight, hoard cash and be ready to swoop for a better player next year. Players, like biz opportunities only come along occasionally and those only fit the current circumstance .even less so.

        So when I see a headline for Broja I think, “spend small with a possible upside today and wait for the better opportunity in Jan or next summer”

        So I think we are in agreement. Spread risk with actions like the U23 team. Make specific large investments in targeted areas.

        The fun in this is the disagreement on someone like Osimhen.

        I do appreciate the deeper thoughts

        PS – Exactly on the username He simply would not watch games on TV to further his development. That one choice kept him from taking the next big step. No tragedy in it. He’s a great kid who has a great life ahead of him just on a path that doesn’t include soccer. Too bad as he was a “Kessie-type” player.

  7. If I’m gathering this right, there’s only a buy back for the next 2 years. So hypothetically, if he trains with the U23s for the next 2 seasons with maybe a few cameos, we’d likely hold onto him

  8. Where did Theo come from? Real Madrid. Where did Diaz come from? Real Madrid. We used Diaz for 3 seasons, we lost nothing. If Jimenez develops and returns to Real Madrid next season, we make €4 million on a player AND, more importantly, maintain a strong relationship with Real Madrid which means next time they want to let one of their talents players develop elsewhere, they’ll look to us. It will also mean when we do sign older players from them, they won’t be demanding high salaries.

  9. Does anyone really believe this guy will ever play a serie A match for milan? Like Simic and Zeroli and Bartesaghi he will play the last 10 minutes of a match that is already won, play 20 minutes of a coppa italia match and then back to bed …. what a waste of promising youth!!!! And then set up milan futuro!!!!! Crazy management.

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