Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Premiership’s out-of-contract XI

Liverpool, this week agreed a deal to sign experienced centre-half Kolo Toure on a free transfer from Manchester City.  The Ivorian will sign a two-year deal at Anfield when he becomes a free agent on July 1.  But which other Premier League stars will soon be out of contract for other clubs to snap up on the cheap?   Here,  are picks of potential Bosmans; a good  guide to this summer’s best freebies. 
Mark Schwarzer stands out as the keeper to buy for any club in need of a ready-made No1. 
The Aussie, 40, wants guaranteed first-team football and has failed to agree a new deal with Fulham. 
Fellow ex-Middlesbrough stopper Ross Turnbull has been cut loose by Chelsea after four years and just seven appearances at Stamford Bridge. 
Newcastle veteran Steve Harper has finally left Tyneside and looks destined for the Championship unless he decides to hang up his gloves. 
Kolo Toure may have been snapped up, but there remains a host of veteran centre-backs on the free-transfer market this window.   William Gallas is almost certain to be released by Tottenham when his contract expires next month.   Injury-ravaged Richard Dunne is surplus to requirements at Aston Villa,
Titus Bramble has left Sunderland and ex-England international Matthew Upson is on his way out of Stoke.
Antolin Alcaraz could yet become available from Wigan but Reading’s Alex Pearce appears to be the pick of the free bunch at the age of just 24.   The Republic of Ireland international has failed to commit to the Royals and has been linked with Liverpool and a reunion with former boss Brendan Rodgers. 
At right-back, Newcastle’s Danny Simpson could tempt a few clubs when his release from St James’ Park is confirmed.
Chelsea outcast Paulo Ferreira would bring a wealth of experience to any club, while Ryan Shotton could be an option if he doesn’t thrash out new terms at Stoke. 
Wigan free agent, Maynor Figueroa is a better free bet at left-back than the ageing Wayne Bridge from Manchester City and Reading’s Ian Harte. 
But fellow Royals full-back Nicky Shorey should still have plenty to offer. 
Yossi Benayoun and Florent Malouda are both leaving Chelsea this summer and their undoubted Premier League talent could interest many managers should wage demands not rule them out.   Stoke’s Jermaine Pennant could be another option for a club in need of a wideman. 
In the middle of the park, Gary O’Neil would look a tempting buy should he reject a new deal at West Ham. 
Emmanuel Frimpong is likely to be let go from Arsenal but, despite his talent, would be a gamble after an injury-plagued start to his fledgling career. 
Thomas Hitzlsperger is leaving Everton having barely featured in his short-spell there, while Mahamadou Diarra has been blighted by serious knee troubles but might be worth the risk should Fulham release him and he gets himself fit. 
Giorgos Karagounis has shown flashes of his old self down at the Cottage but is now aged 36, while team-mate Chris Baird is a good utility option. 
West Brom duo Jerome Thomas and Zoltan Gera are also on the free-transfer market, as will be Stoke’s Dean Whitehead as things stand. 
Phil Neville has definitely left Everton, but could a Premier League side persuade him to delay his inevitable move into coaching? 
Carlton Cole is sure to attract plenty of interest after West Ham decided to end his seven-year Upton Park career. 
Arsenal’s highly-paid Russian Andrey Arshavin may still be able to terrorise defences, but he will almost certainly move abroad. Out-of-contract Argentine, Franco Di Santo is set to quit Wigan and is being eyed up by West Brom whose own frontman, Marc-Antoine Fortune has yet to win a new deal. 
Mladen Petric at Fulham and QPR duo DJ Campbell and Rob Hulse are very much bargain bucket but are available.

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