Ooooo… it’s the silly season again, when every Tom Dick and Neymar is associated with every so-called “buying” club. Today, the Premier League released it’s “retained” and “free transfer” list… and to no one’s surprise, the relegated clubs jettisoned several players.
The Premier League offers financial cushions to those teams that fall through the trap door… but many clubs still look to shed expensive players, in an effort to keep Championship-lean. As well, some players who were considered lower league material will have a good season in the top flight… and become wantaway.
Here then are some names that could be thrown a life vest from another club.
West Ham United
I have to admit, I am absolutely flabbergasted by the Hammers’ signing of Kevin Nolan. Newcastle’s captain had a fantastic season, and at 28 years old, I thought he would head to an EPL team in need of some attacking power. I understand that he would want to play for Big Sam again, but he’s there for five years with no guarantee of returning to the top flight.
Nolan is expected to serve as a replacement for Scott Parker. The midfielder earned the FWA Player of the Year — despite playing for the worst team in the league. Parker is reportedly heading to Tottenham Hotspur (which would be his fourth London club). That is, of course, if ‘Arry sells Luka Modric. Which he says he won’t. Wink wink, nudge nudge. Nowotahmean?
Sensational Senegalese striker (10 points for Slytherin!!!… sorry) Demba Ba is out. So out. Except he’s reportedly going to Newcastle to replace Kevin Nolan. Weird.
Robert Green is supposedly heading back to his first club, Norwich City. This makes sense because a) they need a good keeper, and b) despite howls of protest from several English fans, Green IS a good keeper. He faced the most shots in the Prem last season, while making the most saves. His goals-against average isn’t great… but neither was the team in front of him.
Sigh. Is Carlton Cole any good? Depends on who you ask… The sometime England international scored 11 goals in all competitions. He’s strong, good in the air… just not always in front of the net. Definitely a second striker, he’s getting a sniff from Stoke, who score… um… well, good luck Carlton!
Meanwhile, Matthew Upson has been released by the club. He’s 32, which isn’t ancient for a centre back, but his performance in South Africa didn’t do anything for his resume. He may still get snapped up on a free.