The Top 5 most surprising free agents after the close of the European transfer window / Could any of these improve your club?

Mario Mandzukic

TURIN, ITALY – APRIL 15: Mario Mandzukic of Juventus in action during the serie A match between Juventus and UC Sampdoria at Allianz Stadium on April 15, 2018 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images)

The Croatian forward is without a club for the first time in his glittering career. Not too long ago the man-mountain of a striker was scoring an overhead kick in the Champions League final against Real Madrid.

Having played for Juventus, Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid, Mandzukic has collected a wealth of honours and experience. A host of clubs had been linked after his contract with Qatari side Al-Duhail was terminated by mutual consent but so far nothing concrete has materialised.

Mario Balotelli

LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 03: Mario Balotelli of Manchester City looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between West Ham United and Manchester City at the Boleyn Ground on November 3, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

The infamous Balotelli was made a free agent after his contract expired with hometown club Brescia. The plan had been for Balotelli to continue but the Italian side’s relegation meant the renewal clause in Balotelli’s contract was not activated.

Balotelli made his name at Inter Milan before moving to Manchester City – passing the ball to Sergio Aguero to win the Citizens the league. A surprise link to Watford has been touted but as of yet no one has decided to move for the 30-year-old.

Jack Wilshere

LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 25: Jack Wilshere of West Ham United shows appreciation to the crowds after the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and West Ham United at Emirates Stadium on August 25, 2018 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

The former Arsenal youth prodigy was recently released by West Ham after a mutual agreement to terminate his contract. Wilshere went to social media to vent his frustrations at a lack of game time.

Horrendously unlucky with injuries, Wilshere insists he is fully fit as he looks for a new club for the season. At just 28 years-of-age, his time in England could be over and has even teased the possibility of playing abroad.

Speaking to TalkSport, the former England international said, “I think I want to try something different, LaLiga or Italy, something not many English players have done.”

Alexandre Pato

Hearing the man’s name can almost bring a tear to the eye. Once thought of as one of Europe’s burgeoning stars, Pato became a victim of the injury plague. Continual muscle problems meant in his 6-year stint in Italy he missed 69 games. He left Milan and returned to Brazil but made a return to Europe for 18 months. Firstly with Chelsea and then Villarreal.

The 31-year-old most recently terminated a contract with Sao Paolo. He could make a return to Europe again for the twilight years of his career.

Jonathan Soriano

Much more left field but Jonathan Soriano deserves a place on the list. Scoring more goals than all that precede him. The Spaniard was the king of Salzburg in a Red Bull side which boasted the likes of Sadio Mane and Naby Keita. Just two years ago he was replicating his scoring might in China for Beijing Guoan.

Most recently he left Spanish club Girona, his first return to his homeland since 2009. Now the 35-year-old is looking for the next club to end his career with yet another scoring flurry.

See also:  Jonathan Dinzeyi explains decision to join Arsenal on back of Tottenham release

Genoa president warns club in danger of relegation due to impact of the COVID-19 pandemic / Napoli/Juve at odds over missed fixture


This article was edited by Josh Barker.

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