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Cambridge United have struggled in recent years and life has been quite difficult down in the fourth tier of English football. Add to that the fact that they are not among the richest teams in League Two and you get a sticky situation.
By taking a look at some of their biggest transfers over the years, we can see that is certainly the case. In 1992/93, they acquired the services of Steve Claridge who moved from Luton Town for £252,000 and that was enough to surpass the previous record that was set by George Reilly and his £148,000 price tag from 1979. It really did take them more than ten years to eclipse a record from the late ‘70s and now, the situation is even more dire since the current record-holder hasn’t been dethroned almost 30 years into the future.
Devon White is in third place for his transfer from Bristol Rovers to join Cambridge back in 1991/92 for £113,000. Still, the situation with the departures is somewhat better and while the dates are not exactly recent, they do have some big figures on their books.
Leicester City splashed £2m to snatch Trevor Benjamin away in the 2000/01 campaign, surpassing the previous record that was held by Dion Dublin’s switch to Manchester United in 1992/93 for a reported fee of £1.3m.
Martin Butler’s £1m move to Reading FC in 1999/20 finishes the top three biggest sales in the club’s history.
Needless to say, Cambridge’s transfers are not exactly famous for the incredibly big price tags nor for the superstar arrivals at the club. But still, there are names out there that made their mark on their history.
Dublin could be one, for example, and being the club’s second-biggest departure to date, is one of the stars who deserves to be mentioned as an influential figure and someone who was also respected by the fandom. His exit in the 1992/93 season was surely a big thing.
And then we have Steve Spriggs, a player who arrived from Huddersfield Town in the mid-70s. He is also a player to come from ‘abroad’ and still make it at the club. And how could we even forget what turned out to be possibly the greatest deal in the market United have ever done – the free transfer of the iconic Alan Kimble back in 1986.
Finally, John Taylor’s infamous transfer that saw Cambridge splash the cash and send Taylor to Bristol Rovers to land Devon White has to be on the list as well.