The summer transfer window is booming with lucrative deals happening every single day. The Premier League clubs themselves have splurged on new players, having spent a total of over £1bn already on strengthening their squads with new acquisitions.
While a lot of the spotlight is often placed upon the big-money deals – which involve the likes of Darwin Nuñez to Liverpool, Raheem Sterling to Chelsea and even Aurelian Tchouameni to Real Madrid this summer – there is still room for clubs to make smart, cut-price signings as well.
Indeed, there are still some quality free agents who can be signed without having to pay any transfer fees. These players can strengthen even major sides and definitely add something new to more mid-table clubs of Europe’s top-5 leagues too. So let’s look at the 3 most lucrative free agents still in the transfer market.
Potential steal: A transfer for Andrea Belotti
One of Serie A’s most consistent strikers over the last few years, Andrea Belotti maintained an impressive reputation despite playing for a mid-table side like Torino. He captained the Turin club and led from the front, devastating defenders with his movement and ruthlessness in front of goal.
In 251 appearances for Torino, Belotti scored 113 goals and provided 28 assists – an amazing feat at a team where he got little service. The 28-year-old also has 44 caps for Italy, scoring 12 goals for them. He comes with plenty of experience, a bulldog mentality and prolific nature of scoring goals.
Belotti could be a fine addition for any European club on a free transfer because of his taste for scoring goals and adaptability. AS Roma are reportedly eyeing a move for him (as per La Gazzetta dello Sport), but any well-known European side that wants to strengthen their side with a 10-15+ goals-per-season striker can look to sign Belotti.
Experience of Isco might help many sides
A five-time UEFA Champions League winner, Isco definitely has the experience and pedigree to add to any side. The 30-year-old left Real Madrid after a nine-year spell with them earlier this summer and remains a free agent.
While he had an underwhelming campaign last season, only scoring 1 goal from 16 appearances, that was because he mostly played as a substitute. Isco is a really smart midfielder, with dribbling, passing ability, creativity and long-range shooting being some of his biggest strengths (via WhoScored).
Even if not at a major European side, Isco could definitely improve any mid-table European side. He possesses that special spark to create something out of nothing and can thrive with regular minutes under a set-up that suits him. Isco will be gunning to revive his career after the last few years as an outcast at Madrid, and knowing his talent, the Spaniard would be a cunning buy on a free deal.
Edinson Cavani still has it in him to perform for few years
Edinson Cavani opted to leave Manchester United in the summer after an uneventful second season with them, in which he only made 20 appearances and scored 2 goals. With Cristiano Ronaldo taking his No. 7 shirt and the majority of playing time, the Uruguayan wasn’t confident or motivated enough to perform to his best.
But he refuses to call quits on his career just yet. The 35-year-old still has some tricks up his sleeve and remains a really ruthless forward. With over 17 years of experience in him, the striker has the knowledge and wherewithal to improve many European clubs. If not an elite side, Cavani could join and easily improve a lot of mid-table sides in Europe’s top leagues.
His clinical finishing skills, energetic style and constantly hunger for goals could make him a solid short-term signing as Cavani seems to have it in him to excel in Europe’s major leagues for at least a year or two.