Summer 2021 will see possibly the best selection of available footballing free agents in years.
Liverpool know all too well about the dangers of expiring player contracts, with Gini Wijnaldum set to become one of these available options.
While the club will most likely lose one player for free, they could try to bring another in without spending a penny to make up for the lost income.
With a failing attack being one of the key reasons for this disaster of a season, something needs to change. There is absolutely no doubt that the club needs to bring some new attacking options.
The two men being mentioned are Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland. These are the two best young forwards in the world, so every club with aspirations like Liverpool should be targetting them.
However, with the pandemic limiting funds and Champions League football far from guaranteed, it would take a minor miracle for either man to be signed this summer.
Having that said, deals to sign each of them will become very possible in summer 2022. Mbappe himself will be out of contract at PSG, while the release clause in Haaland’s deal kicks in at the same time.
So, Mbappe could potentially be signed for free in little over a year from now, while Haaland will be available in a cut-price deal.
This is why it makes sense for Liverpool to target a cheap option this summer, rather than breaking the bank on a superstar.
With players returning from injury, the current front three, plus Diogo Jota and a cheap signing, would be enough to secure a return to the top next season. Then Liverpool can sign the superstar attacker that can cement them as an elite side for the next decade the following summer.
We have spoken about Brian Brobbey recently, but here we list three more options for Liverpool that can be signed for free this summer.
First up is Sergio Aguero.
The Argentine has been one of the very best strikers in world football for the last decade at Liverpool’s rivals Manchester City. He retained this world-class status until injury ended his 2019/20 season early and ruled him out for the majority of the current campaign too.
He is now finally starting to make his way back into the side. But he still looks likely to leave as a free agent this summer.
Yes, it is rare to see a club legend leave their team to join a direct rival.
Yet the 32-year-old is a lifelong Liverpool fan, even being quoted by the Munich TZ newspaper (via Sky Sports) many years ago that it was his lifelong “dream” to play for the Reds.
These persistent injuries, combined with his age, has led many to believe that Aguero could be finished at the top level. But Liverpool would only need one decent season from him before signing Mbappe or Haaland in 2022.
If used correctly and given regular rest, there is no reason that Sergio Aguero cannot have a big impact on a major club next season. Mane, Jota, Salah would still be the first-choice attacking line, with Aguero hopefully forcing himself to be included by going on a good run of form. He would only have to be used sparingly to keep him fit.
He is two years younger than Luis Suarez, who many believed was past it until his form this season has propelled Atletico Madrid to a La Liga title charge.
Aguero is the natural finisher that Kopites have been longing for. You have to imagine that Liverpool would be a lot more comfortable if it was he that was getting on the end of some of the chances that have fallen to Roberto Firmino this season.
Look at the impact that Edinson Cavani has had at Manchester United this year. Sergio Aguero could do similar things for his boyhood club, and City would be powerless to stop him.
One thing for sure is that stranger things have happened in this game.
Memphis Depay is linked to Liverpool almost every transfer window. But could he actually make the move to Merseyside this summer?
Of our three options, Depay would probably the choice of most fans. He has been top quality ever since he joined Lyon in 2017.
In fact, he could be the most sought-after free agent in the world this year. Barcelona have been strongly linked, but there is certainly nothing set in stone just yet.
The Dutchman is a very versatile player that can fill numerous attacking roles. He is possibly at his best on the left-wing but is also comfortable as a centre-forward. This versatility will certainly have made Jurgen Klopp a keen admirer.
Depay has 14 goals and eight assists in Ligue 1 this season. He is in the 99th percentile in Europe’s top five leagues for expected assists per 90 in his position. This has put to bed any doubts about whether he would return from his ACL rupture last season as the same player.
While he does not press an awful lot, his tackle and interception numbers are identical to Mo Salah’s for the last four years. This should not prevent Liverpool from taking a gamble on him.
A Depay, Jota and Salah front three looks incredibly dangerous. There would be a lot of fluidity, creativity and goal-scoring ability present. If Sadio Mane does not pick his form up soon, Depay would push him to do so.
The 27-year-old is also very close friends with Virgil van Dijk. The centre-half could probably convince his countryman to choose Liverpool if the club wanted him bad enough.
Again, it is a low-risk transfer that could produce the highest of rewards. At his age, Memphis Depay has a lot to give. He owes it to himself to return to England and prove his doubters wrong.
Our final contender is something of a left-field shout. Olivier Giroud is not someone that most fans would tip to sign for Liverpool this summer.
Yet it is a move that fans should not instantly turn their noses at. The Frenchman does have 10 goals in 13 starts this season, plus another three off the bench, this season after all.
The 34-year-old has been a semi-regular Premier League goalscorer for almost 10 years now. Yet he seems to be in better form right now than he ever has been.
He looks set to leave Chelsea for free this summer, with no decision on his future made as of yet.
Giroud would offer Liverpool the Plan B that they severely lack right now. His height would make him incredibly dangerous in the box considering the crossing ability of Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson.
He is an expert at bringing others into play, proven by his first-choice status for the French national team. He would be the perfect foil for Mane, Salah and Jota.
It is easy to imagine Giroud coming on late in games to offer a change in style. He would add a presence in the box, which Liverpool lack when playing a false 9.
Like Aguero, Giroud is coming to the end of his time at the top. But, again, it would only be a short-term fix, while he isn’t someone that relies on pace anyway. His wages would also probably be the lowest of the trio.
Ok, he will not offer the all-out relentless energy that Jurgen Klopp desires. But one thing that the German suffers from is his reluctance to use a Plan B in games.
Olivier Giroud could well be the perfect player to offer that.