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The Pirates are certainly among the clubs who don’t really have an enormous budget but they were still able to pull off a big-money signing or two throughout the years. But seeing how it’s been almost 30 years since they’ve last broken their transfer record, it’s safe to say that it has definitely been a while.
Back in 1992/23, they signed Andy Tillson from Queens Park Rangers for a then substantial fee of £401,000, eclipsing the former record that was set just a year prior to that. In 1991/92, they bought Justin Skinner from Fulham for a reported fee of £162,000, making quite the noise in the transfer market.
But little did they know that Tillson would be the last record-breaker in the following three decades. Of course, they did come fairly close in 1998/99 with Stephane Leoni and the £360,000 price tag they had to pay to FC Metz to get the player, but that was basically it when it came to purchases.
The sales, however, are somewhat different and definitely more expensive. Jason Roberts’ sale to West Bromwich Albion for £2.7m in 2000/01 is still the biggest piece of business they’ve ever done and is actually level with Barry Hayles’ identical fee upon his departure to Fulham in 1998/99.
As a whole, the Pirates have seven sales that managed to eclipse the one-million price tag, which is definitely an impressive feat on their part.
When talking about Bristol Rovers’ famous transfers, we absolutely have to mention the record breakers once again, simply because it’s not often that the record gets broken in the first place. For that reason, both Tillson and Leoni were transfers that certainly turned some heads and regardless of whether they ended up being a success or not, they are still in the history books.
On a very similar note, Roberts and Hayles demanded a huge transfer fee when they were moved on in 00/01 and 98/99 respectively and for that reason, they warrant a place on this list as well.
But there are more, like the late Harry Bamford, Nigel Martyn who became the first goalkeeper to command a million-pound transfer fee when he was sold to Crystal Palace or Alfie Biggs for his grand return to the club in 1962.
And these are just some of the big names to don their colours coming from a different club but definitely some who are worth mentioning.