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Even though the Latics really do have a couple of really impressive deals on their books, a vast majority of them date all the way back to the old days and mostly to the ‘90s. Their most expensive signing in the history of the club, for example, was bought in the 1992/93 season when they paid £805,000 to get Ian Olney from Aston Villa.
And Olney actually surpassed the former record-holder, Graeme Sharp, who arrived a season prior to that one from Everton with Oldham Athletic paying £765,000 to snatch him away. Interestingly enough, back then, they would break their transfer records almost on a yearly basis.
In 1990/91, they purchased David Currie from Nottingham Forest for £608,000 and he is still their third-most expensive signing to date, along with the other two aforementioned players occupying the first and second spot respectively.
And all 12 of their most expensive signings were done between 1990 and 1996/97, showing just how different their policy and budget were back then. But of course, back then they were also selling players for big money too.
Earl Barrett went to Aston Villa for £2.2m in 1991/92, Paul Gerrard to Everton for £1.3m in 1996/97 and Richard Jobson to Leeds United for £1m in 1995/96, making the club enormous profit along the way too and it made some of those incoming transfers possible in the first place.
Not many fans thought much of David Eyres’ arrival in 2000 but little did they know he would end up becoming quite an icon for the Latics and his signing would indeed be a start of an incredible spell with 234 appearances to his name.
And let’s not forget Roger Palmer for his big arrival from Manchester City back in 1980 as the player went on to become one of the best players Oldham Athletic would ever have in their squad. A similar thing could be said for Andy Ritchie and his two spells with the club, the second of which was a short stint but he would also end up managing the Latics until 2001 as well.
Then there are the likes of Olney, Sharp or Currie, the record-breakers of the early 90s and of course, on the other side of the coin, Barrett, Gerrard and Johnson, for their big departures that made quite a splash within the club and among the fans as well.
Needless to say, there have been quite a few famous ones along the way.