By Andrew Campbell
With the transfer window slamming shut earlier than usual this year, there is sure to be many clubs panicking to get players in before the 9th August deadline.
Unlike many teams in the premier league , Rafa doesn’t have he luxury of spending any amount of money to get the squad he wants, so may have to look in the bargain basement.
With lots of positions still to fill and not a great deal of money to spend, here’s seven players Rafa could sign for free over the next 11 days:
A talented German International who was released by Shalke 04. He would certainly fill the gap in the No10 role which Rafa has highlighted as an area for improvement. A versatile and technical player who is highly thought of in Germany – although there’ll be plenty of competition around Europe for this one!
Bags and bags of experience playing at the highest level with world class players, he would be a player that younger players could benefit from. Despite seeming like he has been around forever he is only 31, and could still have a lot to offer. Wages could be a sticking point though..
Could be an ideal replacement for Dwight Gayle should he leave (which looks likely as part of Rondon deal). Quick, capable of scoring goals in the Premier League and, although injuries have hampered him over the past few season, and a risk worth taking.
Heavily linked with a move to the Premier League this summer with Newcastle, Fulham and West Ham thought to be interested. He is a defender that can play out from the back, being comfortable in possession, which would appeal to Rafa after Florian Lejeune’s injury. Definitely one to watch..
Newcastle were heavily linked with Sako in his Wolves days. An explosive winger who can also operate upfront or off the front, he would provide competition in several areas, but probably wouldn’t find himself a starting role week in week out. Would be a risk free signing if Rafa was to take a punt.
With six years and over 160 appearances under his belt for West Brom he would definitely fit the category of having plenty Premier League the experience if Rafa wants to go down that route. A player that tends to keep things simple without setting the world alight. Would be a solid temporary replacement for Isaac Hayden if he departs , which is looking likely.
Probably the unpopular and unflattering choice of signing among many fans, however as a 4th choice centre half we could do a lot worse. Brings so much experience to the table which would help the likes of Schar and Lascelles no end. His best years are probably behind him but to sign on a free would be a punt worth taking for a Premier League winner!
Whatever happens between now and 9th August, it is sure to divide opinion and raise a few eyebrows. Let’s hope Mike Ashley decides to be put his hand in his pocket, but let’s not hold our breath!
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