The 49ers officially completed their takeover of Leeds United in July of this year as they bought out the remaining 56% of shares from Andrea Radrizzani, having previously owned 44%.
They are now in full control of the club and the Italian owns Sampdoria in his home country, after a six-year spell in England with the Yorkshire-based outfit.
Radrizzani had plenty of highs and lows throughout his time as owner of the Whites, from winning the Championship title and promotion to the Premier League, to being relegated from the top-flight at the end of last season.
One of his most impressive pieces of business, with the benefit of hindsight, was the sale of central midfielder Ronaldo Vieira back in the summer of 2018, as the once-promising youngster has failed to kick on his career.
Ronaldo Vieira’s Leeds statistics
The former England U21 international came up through the youth ranks at Leeds and eventually worked his way into the first-team as a regular during the 2016/17 campaign.
Vieira made 34 Championship appearances under Garry Monk and started 24 games that season as he showcased his defensive quality with 3.1 tackles and interceptions per game for his side.
The promising talent, who former Whites development coach once lauded as “bombastic”, followed that up with 28 outings and 23 league starts for Leeds during the following campaign, in which the central midfielder made 3.5 tackles and interceptions per match.
In the summer of 2018, Radrizzani opted to sell the English whiz to Italian side Sampdoria for an initial fee of £7.7m due to the financial situation at the club.
He revealed that it was a “sacrifice” that needed to be made to balance the books whilst also being able to invest more into the team, despite then-manager Marcelo Bielsa not being “happy” with the decision.
How much is Ronaldo Vieira worth now?
The decision from Radrizzani to cash in on Vieira has turned out to be a fantastic one as the Italian chief hit the jackpot with the midfielder, whose value has plummeted over the subsequent years.
He has made 90 first-team appearances for Sampdoria over the past five-and-a-half seasons but has spent two spells out on loan with Hellas Verona and Torino during that time.
Vieira never averaged a Sofascore rating higher than 6.73 across five Serie A seasons, which is a score that would place him 19th within the current Leeds squad.
The 25-year-old made 18 Serie A appearances for Torino and Sampdoria combined last term and was an unused substitute on ten occasions.
His parent club were relegated from the top-flight and Vieira has managed 1.9 tackles and interceptions per game across 13 Serie B matches in the 2023/24 campaign.
These statistics show that the former Leeds prospect has endured a rough time since his exit from Elland Road in 2018, which is reflected in his market value.
At the time of writing (07/12/2023), the midfielder is valued at €1.5m (£1.28m) by Transfermarkt and that is a staggering 83% decline from the initial £7.7m the Whites raked in for his services.
This shows that Radrizzani, who has been at Sampdoria since the summer and now has Vieira at his club once again, hit the jackpot with the former England U21 international as he sold him before the young ace’s value plummeted.
Leeds were able to secure a significant fee for his services and his form and plummeting value since his departure suggests that they cashed in on him at the perfect time.