Belfast Telegraph

Monday 30 March 2015

The best players up for grabs on a Bosman free transfer - from Michael Owen to van Nistelrooy

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - JANUARY 09:   Michael Owen of Manchester United in action during the FA Cup sponsored by E.ON 3rd round match between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford on January 9, 2011 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - JANUARY 09: Michael Owen of Manchester United in action during the FA Cup sponsored by E.ON 3rd round match between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford on January 9, 2011 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
Manuel Almunia
The Spanish stopper has slipped down the pecking order thanks in part to some high-profile mistakes as well as the emergence of Wojciech Szczesny. The return of veteran Jens Lehmann, who has hinted he may stay on at the Emirates, could see Almunia looking for pastures new this summer.
Brad Friedel
Always a dependable presence with a cool head behind the defence, Friedel is yet to sign on for next season at Villa Park. Speculation has seen him linked with a return to Liverpool as well as a move across the Midlands to West Brom.
John Carew
Unable to reconcile a past disagreement with Villa boss Gerard Houllier the popular Norwegian has spent time on loan at Stoke since January. Carew has admitted he would love to make his move to the Britannia permanent.
Lee Bowyer
Bowyer has continued to produce all-action displays and has been rewarded with a new contract. But the 34-year-old has yet to put pen to paper, perhaps considering his options with the Blues having dropped down to the Championship.
Johan Elmander
Elmander hit 10 Premier League goals this season and has been linked with a move to Turkish giants Galatasaray. Bolton will want to do all they can to keep hold of the £12m Swedish striker but his exit look inevitable.
David Vaughan
The attention at Blackpool has tended to focus on Charlie Adam, but instrumental alongside him has been Vaughan. An excellent all-rounder, a stay in the top-flight for the Welshman seems likely. Sunderland have already expressed an interest.
Diomansy Kamara
The 30-year-old forward is heading for the exit at Craven Cottage this summer and has not ruled out a return to Leicester where he has spent time on loan this campaign. His time there was unimpressive but over a season he could prove a hit.
Sotirios Kyrgiakos
The former Greek international fell out of favour when Kenny Dalglish returned to the Liverpool dugout and has found starts hard to come by. The 31-year-old's presence in defence should ensure he's not heading for the job centre come the new season.
Patrick Vieira
The French enforcer has signalled that he would like to stay on at Manchester City but no deal has yet been agreed. This season he proved he could still put those lanky legs to good use, meaning he won't be short of suitors if he is shown the Eastland's exit.
Owen Hargreaves
Hargreaves has seen his time at Old Trafford ravaged by injuries but it is thought Sir Alex Ferguson will offer the former Bayern Munich man a pay-as-you-play deal. If he can regain his fitness, his passing ability would be a major asset to any side.
Eidur Gudjohnsen
Spending time on loan at Fulham this season, the Icelandic forward seems to have settled back in west London. Rumoured interest from newly promoted QPR might not be out of the question while it is also thought the Cottagers will offer him a permanent deal.
Sebastian Larsson
Birmingham have been trying to convince their midfielder to sign a new deal for months, but to no avail. Was instrumental in the Blues' Carling Cup triumph and offers pace and skill to any team. Newcastle have been frequently linked with a swoop.
Boudewijn Zenden
The veteran midfielder has found his playing time restricted and Sunderland have confirmed they will not be offering him a new deal. Wherever the former Liverpool and Chelsea star ends up, he will want assurances of a first team place.
Jonathan Woodgate
Woodgate's time at Spurs has followed a sadly familiar course, i.e. spending too much of his time in the treatment room. Boss Harry Redknapp has hinted that a new deal may not be forthcoming but the former England defender's chances of finding a new club will depend much on his fitness.
Rob Green
Green managed to put the disappointment of last year's World Cup behind him to prove a shining light in a dismal Hammers team. A capable pair of hands, Green should remain in the top flight.
Matthew Upson
Upson failed to reproduce his commanding defensive displays on a consistent basis this campaign and with West Ham looking to cut the wage bill, the former Arsenal man could be heading for the exit.
Kieron Dyer
The former Newcastle midfielder broke his leg in only his third game at Upton Park and has not been able to regain the form that saw him shine as a youngster. Few will want to gamble on the fitness of the 32-year-old.
Harry Kewell
Galatasaray have not offered the former Leeds and Liverpool midfielder Kewell a new contract. The 32-year-old could still inject pace and crossing ability into a squad and has been linked with moves in Europe, the US as well as a return to Australia.
Ze Roberto
The veteran Brazilian will leave Hamburg after failing to agree terms. Galatasaray are rumoured to be keen on the 36-year-old midfielder who would bring experience to potential suitors.
Ruud van Nistelrooy
The former Manchester United hitman has confirmed he will leave Hamburg in the summer after the club blocked a return to Real Madrid in January. Van Nistelrooy insists he has firm offers and despite being on the verge of 35 his predatory instincts would be a welcome addition to any club.
Torsten Frings
The veteran German has only been offered a coaching contract at Werder Bremen but has suggested he'd like to carry on playing. His tough-tackling displays could yet earn him a deal elsewhere.
Lucas Neill
Dismissing a return to his native Australia just yet, 33-year-old Neill is weighing up his options having run the course of his contact at Galatasaray. Offers from England, Russia and Germany are believed to be on the cards.
Miroslav Klose
With a proven track record of scoring at domestic and international level, the 32-year-old will no doubt be in demand should he fail to agree a new contract at Bayern. Talks have stalled over the length of a new deal.

The Bosman Ruling tends to be viewed in a negative light in which all the power is handed to the players and football clubs can be held to ransom.

But on the flip side, it means new players can be purchased for the sum total of absolutely nothing. And that will be the case this summer as contracts come to an end.

We've rounded up the best players in the Premier League and across the continent that will be available on a free transfer this summer.

>> Click on More Pictures to launch our guide.

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