The sale of Diego Fabbrini to Birmingham City has added to Watford’s reputation as among the smartest traders of players in the country.
The Hornets have this season commanded more than £9m in transfer fees and loan fees for players who are largely surplus to requirements – and that does not include any money received for loan deals that took Gabriele Angella to Queens Park Rangers, Sean Murray to Wigan Athletic, Connor Smith to Stevenage, Uche Ikpeazu to Port Vale and then Blackpool or Daniel Pudil to Sheffield Wednesday. RCD Espanyol will also be expected to pay a fee for the services of Giedrius Arlauskis.
Of the headline departures from Vicarage Road, Watford will receive £1.5m from Birmingham City for Fabbrini on top of the £250,000 loan fee they were paid in August by Middlesbrough who, we understand, also paid the player’s five-figure salary in full for the time he was at the Riverside.
Gino Pozzo and Scott Duxbury also, as we exclusively revealed in August, managed to persuade Reading to shell out a £2.5m loan fee for Matej Vydra and stump up his wages for the duration of his season long loan.
Porto had to wire over a £500,000 loan fee to take Miguel Layun to Portugal for the rest of the campaign and agree to an €8m buyout clause which they should activate in the summer. The biggest transfer fee of the lot was the £4m Sheffield Wednesday had to pay for Fernando Forestieri while the Owls also parted with £300,000 for Lewis McGugan, a deal largely orchestrated by sporting director Luke Dowling.