More Aston Villa Free Agents?
With Paul Lambert more than hinting there maybe two more bodies through the door before the transfer window closes on September 1st, a mooted move for Tom Cleverley may only leave money left for another free agent, which prior to signing Aly Cissokho and Carlos Sanchez was the market where the club was trading.
Former Liverpool winger Joe Cole made the transition from West Ham United further north to Villa, and Lambert also looked to add top-flight experience to the team with Senderos and Richardson (a small fee) too.
Whether there are any free agents on the Villa radar or not, there is every possibility that a number of players currently without a club could find themselves playing in the Premier League this season, which may shake up the betting odds at both ends of the table.
Free agents still avaliable
Despite a wonderful rise to prominence which established Montpellier as a strong Ligue 1 team, recent years have failed to reproduce the same level of success. Losing Remy Cabella to Newcastle could be a major blow to their hopes of being competitive next season, but right-back Bocaly may also be missed. The French defender became a free agent following another mediocre season, but the solid and pacey right-back has potential for the Premier League.
He could have been an option for Aston Villa, but the unexpected rise of Alan Hutton seems to have solved the Aston Villa right-back problem.
Bocaly would fit in nicely with the strong contingent of French players at Newcastle, although the arrival of Daryl Janmaat may not guarantee regular first team action. Crystal Palace, Hull and Stoke would also be good choices for the former Montpellier defender if any of the three teams showed an interest in his services.
His release from Inter Milan could represent an opportunity for Mariga to become the second Kenyan to play in the Premier League after his brother Victor Wanyama. The combative central-midfielder shone during loan spells with Parma which helped him develop into a stronger player, although his chances of becoming a regular at Inter were slim.
Moving on from Serie A to the Premier League may be a logical step as Mariga is equipped to handle the physicality and rigours of playing in England.
Harry Rednapp was once interested and Manchester City actually once signed him but work permit complications pushed the deal past the the close of the transfer window.
With that in mind, Mariga could have been an option for Lambert to beef up the Villa midfield, but the time needed to complete a complicated deal means he’s not an ideal last-minute signing.
Acquiring Mariga on the cheap could be one of the bargains of the summer, but with Lerner’s cheque book open again, Villa seem to be taking a more measured approach to finally sorting out the midfield.
Uruguay captain Lugano is still a free agent after being released by West Brom. At 33, with his experience, with his invaluable experience it’s surprising a newly-promoted team hasn’t had a sniff at him. Although he lacks pace, he knows the Premier League… and the Midlands. If Vlaar suddenly ends up in Manchester on deadline day, Lugano could be an emergency cheap option to paper the cracks.
After more than 100 appearances at West Ham, Welsh international midfielder Jack Collison now finds himself a free agent who would not look out of place once again in this season’s Premier League. As a versatile midfielder, he could either play in the centre or out wide. At 25-year-old and with something still to prove on the Premier League stage, would he have not been a better option than Joe Cole, if Lambert wanted to buy a West Ham reject?
Cole, of course is a more glamourous name. Collison could have been an option if Villa were carrying on their free agent route, but with Lerner now taking the club seriously again, Collison is more likely to end up in the Championship.