If there is one thing that the Premier League excels in, it is hyperbole.
This is why there is such a huge focused placed on big money signings concerning EPL clubs, from confirmed deals to rumours surrounding stars such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Alvaro Morata and Kylian Mbappe.
We should not lose sight of the fact that a number of quality players are currently available on free transfers, however, as a combination of injury, age and contract disputes has left them without security. In this post, we will look at these players in closer detail and see which ones represent the best bargains:
Santi Cazorla, Arsenal
We start with a less than obvious choice, as Santi Cazorla’s Arsenal career has quietly ground to a halt amid long-term injury concerns. The talented Spaniard is now out of contract after making just 11 appearances last season, after being laid low with a crippling Achilles problem.
The 32-year old, who has recently admitted to considering his future during a sustained absence, now faces a further wait on the sidelines and could be out of action until December.
While this means that Arsene Wenger is increasingly unlikely to offer the midfield playmaker a new deal, a player of Cazorla’s quality and experience would surely be in demand if he regained full fitness. EPL side Bournemouth could well be inclined to offer a pay-as-you play deal for Cazorla, for example, creating the ideal platform for him to rebuild his career.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Manchester United
While the talismanic Swede may have been unofficially released by Manchester United after incurring a knee injury in April, his future remains the subject of intense speculation.
After all, while the 35-year old is unlikely to return to full fitness until December at the earliest, his impressive, 28-goal haul last season hints that he still has a huge amount to offer. There are a number of MLS clubs reported to be keen on securing the star strikers’ services, for example, particularly with the North American season not scheduled to start until March.
If you have a gamblers’ instinct, however, you may be included to use your money to back Ibrahimovic to remain in Manchester. Rumours suggest that Jose Mourinho could be primed to offer the Swede a pay-as-you play deal, enabling him to rebuild his fitness while potentially offering a prolific goalscoring option during the second half of the season.
Jan Kirchoff, Sunderland
The talented and versatile German enjoyed a stellar season at the Stadium of Light in 2015/16, after arriving in January under the stewardship of Sam Allardyce. He played a pivotal role in helping the Black Cats to sustain their Premier League status that season, while his enforced absence was noticeable as Sunderland failed to beat the drop last year.
In fact, his last appearance for Sunderland came during a 1-0 to Chelsea in December, as a persistent knee injury kept him out of the first team.
Now that he has returned from injury, however, he is expected to reject any new deal and make a swift return to either to EPL or potentially the Bundesliga. Premier League newcomers Brighton and Hove Albion are one club who are said to be interested, as they look to add depth to their squad and improve the defensive cover that is provided by their midfield.
These players are just three of many who are available for free this year, while they could play a key role in contributing to a successful squad during the 2017/18 season.