The Free Agents Clubs Should Consider in 2021

Daniel Sturridge
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Jack Wilshere Odds

Jack Wilshere is currently a free agent following his departure from West Ham United in October, and he has recently been noticeably vocal in the media about his next career move.

Wilshere nce hailed as the future of English football by none other than Barcelona legend Xavi, Wilshere’s career trajectory to this point in time has been in freefall. Undoubtedly a player with excellent technical ability and an aggressive tenacity, the now 28-year-old has been constantly plagued by long-term injuries which have halted his progression with Arsenal, Bournemouth, and most recently West Ham.

This risk of injury is often cited as the reason why he is currently without a club, but there is certainly enough quality there for a potential bargain. Although there have been rumours of clubs offering him a pay-as-you-play contract, he recently spoke of his desire to join a club that play attacking, expansive football.
Odds were slashed on high-flyers Rangers as his potential destination, with a link-up with former England teammate Steven Gerrard currently 7/2, while a dream return to the Emirates at 11/8 mean the Gunners are favourites to bring back their very own former prodigy.

With Arsenal coming unstuck at the moment with a lack of creativity, could free agent Jack Wilshere be the answer?

Clubs who consider sign Wilshere: Any struggling Premier League team

Jack Wilshere Next Club Odds

skybet betting tip

RANGERS @ 7/2

Jack Wilshere Transfer Odds

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ASTON VILLA @ 5/1

Mario Balotelli Odds

There are very few adjectives that describe Mario Balotelli and the enigmatic Italian finds himself without a club for the first time in his career, although, it feels as if he has never truly belonged anywhere. His free-spirited demeanour and tendency to steal the headlines for all the wrong reasons means, at 30, he has played for nine different clubs and been kicked out of or pushed towards the exit door in each one.

Most recently, a move to Brescia ended in disastrous fashion after the club were relegated to Serie B, but Balotelli's refusal to turn up for training throughout June and July meant that the club had no choice but to terminate his deal. And, to make matters worse, Brescia is Balotelli's hometown club, a club in which his mother was brought to tears over when the former Italy international said he would be returning to his boyhood side.

There have been reports of a move to Brazil (which is currently 4/6), where the chief of Vasco da Gama claims an announcement is imminent of a January move.

However, nothing is official as of yet and given the nature of the current climate, anything could fall through and with the MLS and the Chinese Super League currently at 4/1 and 6/1, respectively, it seems Balotelli could go anywhere.

Wherever the 30-year-old ends up plying his trade, let's hope we get to see the very best of his undoubted mercurial talent, but it does seem after yet another problem with his attitude that his career in Europe is over.

Clubs who should consider Balotelli: Anyone in the MLS - read all the Balotelli odds here.

Mario Balotelli Odds

skybet betting tip

ANY BRAZILIAN CLUB @ 4/6

Mario Balotelli Transfer Odds

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ANY MLS CLUB @ 4/1

Mario Mandzukic

Rather incredibly, former Bayern Munich and Juventus forward Mario Mandzukic finds himself without a club having been forced out last season by Maurizio Sarri. The 34-year-old has had a commendable career, winning league titles and domestic trophies in Germany, Spain and Italy.

In addition, one Champions League trophy and another final appearance for Juventus in their defeat to Real Madrid in 2017 is certainly no mean feat for a free agent. His goal in that final, a spectacular looping overhead kick, will live long in the memory of Juventus fans and no doubt clubs in the Premier League could do with this sort of brilliance.

After a failed move to Qatar with Al-Duhail, the Croatian had been rumoured to be the subject of interest from Manchester United, although it seems Edinson Cavani’s arrival may have closed that door. However, with Raul Jimenez out for Wolverhampton Wanderers and with clubs like Arsenal struggling, surely somebody of his experience isn't the worst idea.

A return to Italy with AC Milan is also seen as a likely destination, while potential suitors in Fiorentina and Galatasaray have been rumoured to be interested in acquiring him on a free.

Clubs who should consider Mandzukic: Burnley, West Brom, Sheffield United, Wolves, Arsenal, Fulham

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Daniel Sturridge

Now 31, former Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge finds himself as somewhat of a crossroads in his career. His most recent move to Turkey ended in rather unsavoury fashion after he received a four-month worldwide ban after breaching betting rules, and was subsequently released from his contract.

While this recent development may put off potential suitors, he would certainly be a welcomed addition for certain clubs in the Premier League who are lacking in goals.

The current bottom three, Burnley, Fulham and Sheffield could certainly benefit from a player of his calibre, and his quick feet and undeniable ability in front of goal would add some much-needed quality to each of their blunted attacks of late.

It may seem as if his career at the top may be over, but his goalscoring record cannot be disputed and four goals in 11 games in Turkey was certainly not a bad return before his expulsion.

Clubs who should consider Sturridge: Any Premier League team in need of goals

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Other notable names

There are a whole host of throwbacks in the free agent market who may possess the quality of years gone by if they arrive at a suitable destination.

Most notably, Brazilian duo and both former Chelsea players Ramires and Alexandre Pato are both without clubs, while household names in Wilfried Bony and Fabio Borini complete a list of players who would be a welcomed addition to lower leagues sides looking to acquire a bargain.

Ahmed Musa, Daryl Jnmaat, Oumar Niasse, Shinji Kagawa are all former Premier League players also without a club and they too should be on the radar of clubs battling it out down at the bottom, or perhaps in the Championship.

By Charlie Rhodes

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