The press have this week released a full list of Premier League players who are out of contract at the end of the season. While much of it makes for a fairly uninspired read, there are potentially a few hidden gems that could inspire some interest from us.
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We’ve narrowed the candidates down into four positions in our list below. You can see the full list of out of contract players for each position at the bottom of each page. Is there anyone here you’d take…
Is there anyone here that would be a marked improvement on what we already have? The Reds are certainly thought to be on the lookout for someone to provide competition for Simon Mignolet’s number one shirt – particularly since recent reports suggest that Brad Jones is on his way out (via The Metro).
Damian Martinez has had a decent season with the Gunners, playing six times for the first-team, and at just 22 he has room to grow and improve. Boaz Myhill has proved to be a decent stand-in for the injured Ben Foster and has plenty of experience at Premier League level.
Full List: Brad Jones (Liverpool), Gerhard Tremmel (Swansea City), Brad Friedel (Tottenham Hotspur), Thomas Sorensen (Stoke City), Ben Amos (Manchester United), Steve Harper (Hull City), Brian Murphy (QPR), Damian Martinez (Arsenal), David Cornell (Swansea City), Conrad Logan (Leicester City), Jussi Jaaskelainen (West Ham United), Boaz Myhill (West Bromwich Albion).
Brendan Rodgers is going to be on the lookout for experience this summer, just to add some depth to his defensive options. Why? Well, you’ll spot Glen Johnson, Kolo Toure and Jon Flanagan on the out of contract list below, while the latter will miss most of the season through injury anyway. Jose Enrique has also barely featured over the last couple of years.
Ron Vlaar is the most obvious name that jumps out at us. The veteran defender was excellent at the World Cup last summer and despite missing much of the current campaign through injury he’s been decent when he’s played. Micah Richards could also be a useful back-up option who can play in a couple of different options.
Full List: Ron Vlaar (Aston Villa), Micah Richards (Manchester City), Chris Herd (Aston Villa), Michael Duff (Burnley), Steven Reid (Burnley), Damien Delaney (Crystal Palace), Brede Hangeland (Crystal Palace), Sylvain Distin (Everton), Antolin Alcaraz (Everton), Luke Garbutt (Everton), Maynor Figueroa (Hull City), Alex Bruce (Hull City), Liam Rosenior (Hull City), Paul McShane (Hull City), Marcin Wasilewski (Leicester City), Paul Konchesky (Leicester City), Matthew Upson (Leicester City), Glen Johnson (Liverpool), Jon Flanagan (Liverpool), Kolo Toure (Liverpool), Richard Dunne (QPR), Clint Hill (QPR), Anthony Reveillere (Sunderland), Wes Brown (Sunderland), Chris Baird (West Bromwich Albion), Gareth McAuley (West Bromwich Albion), Guy Demel (West Ham United), Andy Wilkinson (Stoke City).
We all know that Steven Gerrard is going this summer and while there’s clearly not going to be a ready-made replacement sitting on this list, there are a couple of short-term solutions who could make things easier and give us some strength in depth.
James Milner is the most talked about. He’d certainly be an excellent addition, considering that he can also play on the flanks and even as a makeshift centre forward, as he’s done with Manchester City this season. Mathieu Flamini would also be worth a look should Lucas Leiva decide to move to Serie A, as has been rumoured (via the Daily Mail).
Full List: Mathieu Flamini (Arsenal), Abou Diaby (Arsenal), Dean Marney (Burnley), Ross Wallace (Burnley), Anthony Knockaert (Leicester City), Esteban Cambiasso (Leicester City), Dean Hammond (Leicester City), Gary Taylor-Fletcher (Leicester City), Stephen Quinn (Hull City), James Milner (Manchester City), Tom Cleverley (Manchester United), Jonas Gutierrez (Newcastle United), Ryan Taylor (Newcastle United), Joey Barton (QPR), Alejandro Faurlin (QPR), Karl Henry (QPR), Wilson Palacios (Stoke City), Youssouf Mulumbu (West Bromwich Albion), Claudio Yacob (West Bromwich Albion).
Liverpool need a striker. Arguably we need three. Mario Balotelli, Fabio Borini and Rickie Lambert have all failed to produce while we’re all aware of Daniel Sturridge’s issues. Divock Origi will be one of those three, when he returns from Lille at the end of the season. Unfortunately, we’re not going to have the financial power to sign two big-money strikers.
That leaves us with a choice. Stick with what we’ve got and hope Sturridge returns quickly, or sign something of an unknown quantity and take a gamble on him providing some decent support. Danny Ings could just be that man. He has his critics, of course. But scoring nine goals in one of the least creative Premier League teams of all time should not be sniffed at. He’s young, he’s cheap and there’s certainly nothing more inspiring on the list below.
Full List: Darren Bent (Aston Villa), Danny Ings (Burnley), Gael Kakuta (Chelsea), Didier Drogba (Chelsea), Shola Ameobi (Crystal Palace), Jerome Thomas (Crystal Palace), Owen Garvan (Crystal Palace), Yannick Sagbo (Hull City), Scott Sinclair (Manchester City), James Wilson (Manchester United), Sammy Ameobi (Newcastle United), Jonathan Walters (Stoke City), Peter Odemwingie (Stoke City), Carlton Cole (West Ham United), Nene (West Ham United), Bobby Zamora (Queens Park Rangers).