Soccer is a sport with a lot of turnover at the club level, and each summer we see significant movement during the transfer window.
While 2021 has been relatively quiet thus far for a number of reasons, most notably the financial effects of COVID-19 and various major competitions this summer, we’re beginning to see the transfer rumors come in heavy.
But what about the players that are out of contract? As players get older and sometimes less desirable because of wage demands and overall cost, teams will allow them to sit the free agency block for long.
Other times there are unique cases like Lionel Messi, who remains a free agent because of Barcelona’s financial troubles.
The club is still unable to settle up with La Liga because of the massive wages the club is paying other players, which in turn is affecting Barcelona’s ability to bring back its most-coveted player.
Here’s a look at 10 of the most notable soccer free agents still available heading into the 2021/22 season.
The Argentina legend is out at famed South American side Boca Juniors, but Tevez is still itching to play moving forward. Tevez feels like the type of player that could finish his career in Major League Soccer, and given the interest in Argentinian talent over the years it’s easy to imagine another star player coming to the U.S.
The former Newcastle striker struggled during his time with the Magpies but Carroll could still be a strong option for a Championship side at only 32 years old. His track record as a goal scorer is admirable and given his leadership qualities he’d make a great signing.
Ribery’s track record for club and country is almost unmatched and although the Frenchman finds himself out of contract he could surely find a home if he chooses to continue playing. After enjoying himself in Italy recently, it could be possible that he lands with another Serie A club to finish his career.
The Cameroonian spent significant time at Torino and developed a strong reputation in Serie A, but Nkoulou will have a chance to sign elsewhere and looks set to move back to Ligue 1 next season.
Luiz will be looking for an opportunity outside of England most likely, but given his versatility and free-flowing style, why not come to Major League Soccer? Luiz has been an avid visitor of the United States throughout his career and the Brazilian would be extremely marketable for the league as a player that can play various positions and enjoys the spotlight.
The former Arsenal man has had his share of injuries throughout this career, but Wilshere is still only 29 years old and as a midfielder should have plenty more to give to a Premier League side. He spent last season at Bournemouth and it’s hard to imagine another mid-tier English side wouldn’t take a chance on the veteran.
The former Bayern Munich defender is a savvy veteran that absolutely can offer teams throughout Europe the stability and experience necessary to compete for several more seasons. Boateng feels like a Premier League defender at this stage of his career, similar to how Thiago Silva joined Chelsea late in the summer in 2020 after leaving PSG.
The Spanish goalscorer has had his share of controversy throughout his career, but there’s no question that Costa offers something significant up top. Costa struggled recently at Atletico Madrid, but for a mid-tier Spanish or English side it feels like a no brainer signing.
The Euro 2020 winner will surely find a team before the new season starts, right? At 36, Chiellini is certainly nearing the end of his career, but after the stellar performances he put together for the Italians this summer it shouldn’t be questioned whether or not he can still compete at the highest of levels.
Barcelona’s financial struggles are well documented and that’s been the primary discussion this summer for the La Liga giants. Although a deal between Messi and the club appears imminent, if Barcelona isn’t able to register the Argentina superstar it could allow another team to swope in and acquire the attacker.