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In the world of football, it's all about winning and making money. It's usually an impossible mission for front offices and it's a balance that only a special few clubs around the world are able to maintain, considering you have to juggle between talent acquisition, trophies, ambitions and investments that are often excessive, especially in the top European leagues.

French side Lille OSC might be the only true team to check off all those boxes. In an analysis conducted by the International Centre for Sports Studies (CIES) that focused on net spending on transfer operations concluded over the last 10 seasons, the 2020-21 Ligue 1 champions rank first with a positive transfer balance of €349 million over the last decade. They're one of the few teams nine figures in the green while a good chunk of all the teams we are familiar with as being giants in Europe sit in the red with deficits. 

It's a masterpiece of savvy transfers and behind the scenes, there's only one man capable of pulling off this sporting miracle: Luis Campos. We have a lot of free-agent players on the market available this summer -- from Kylian Mbappé to Paulo Dybala -- but because of his successful resume, the now-available Campos could be one of the most sought-after names for top clubs around Europe.

His name is not the most-talked about among the media, but he's definitely appreciated and valued in the world of football. If you ask any agent about the 57-year-old Portuguese transfer chief and the answer is always roughly the same: "He's a genius." Nothing else to say. Just a few weeks ago, former FC Bayern president and legend Karl-Heinze Rummenigge called him "the best in the world at his work" because Lille's results speak for themselves. "What he's doing everywhere he goes is simply incredible," Rummenigge added.

After working at Real Madrid with José Mourinho as a scout, Campos in 2013 moved on to Ligue 1 to become the technical director who built that fantastic Monaco squad which reached the the UEFA Champions League semifinals and held out Paris Saint-Germain on its way to a French league title. 

Need some names? Campos discovered Mbappé and trusted him as a young star in Monaco, then sold him to PSG after extending the contract with Monaco only because of his relationship with Campos -- otherwise he was destined to leave as a free agent. These details are so important for the balance of the top clubs. He also helped launch the careers of Fabinho, Anthony Martial, Bernardo Silva before flipping them at incredible rates to the top European clubs. He managed to win and make profits for the club, which is an incredibly difficult task that requires some excellent balance.

Campos himself was the deus-ex-machina of these excellent results achieved by Lille. Last season, the French club were crowned Ligue 1 champs against a mammoth PSG side and did so while relying on low-cost intuitions (such as Burak Yilmaz, the undisputed star) but also some talents in which Campos had faith in. These days, just about every club on the market wants Jonathan David and Sven Botman, and the French club will make cash with the two of them in the summer. And don't forget Renato Sanches, who joined Lille in a complicated moment, at the crossroads of his career, but was backed by Campos. Those are three assets potentially worth €150 million in total for the summer.

You could also look at Lille's recent history to understand how well Campos has done in this project as they prepare for a round-of-16 clash against Chelsea in the UEFA Champions League (on Paramount+). Take Nigerian striker Victor Osimhen for instance, who Lille acquired for €21 million and then sold to Napoli for €70 million, then his replacement Yilmaz allowed Lille to win the Ligue 1 title with an incredible season. And then there is the rising Canadian star David, who will probably cost more than €40-50 million in the summer. A virtuous project that brings results on the field and in the balance sheet for Financial Fair Play -- and a Ligue 1 title won in Paris Saint-Germain's dynastic era, which we can't forget about it because what Campos did together with Christophe Galtier as manager was simply unbelievable.

And what's happening now? After leaving the Lille project in December of 2020, the transfer guru has taken a step back to recharge before looking for a new chapter of his career. The magical thing about Campos' work is that there's always an everlasting impact made in the clubs he has left behind because his work brings results for years to come. It's also worth pointing out that behind the scenes in 2021, Campos was at the top of the list to become the director of football at Real Madrid together with Massimiliano Allegri as their new manager, but then the agreement with the Italian manager collapsed. We know football has endless ways and who knows where the next stop will be for Luis Campos. Of course, the results are on his side. The field says so, and the numbers do too. The genius will be ready for another miracle and it's just matter of time.