Best of the Bosmans XI: Barca stars, £35m freebie, Prem targets

Pirlo Milan

Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal & Liverpool fans all interested in what could be a cracking Bosman XI if all players allowed their contracts to expire…

Goalkeeper: Igor Akinfeev - CSKA Moscow (value = £17.5m)

Opportunistic clubs requiring accomplished goalkeepers are spoiled for choice in the Bosman market as Igor Akinfeev, Victor Valdes and Guillermo Ochoa all have swiftly expiring deals at their respective clubs: CSKA Moscow, Barcelona and Ajaccio.

While Akinfeev has suffered inconsistent form during the current season, he is - at 27 - vastly experienced with other ten years senior-level football behind him, the captain's armband on him and was the club's best player in their last campaign.

In Champions League competition in the season to date he has averaged approximately four saves per game.

Left back: Patrice Evra - Manchester United (value = £9.7m)

A remarkable coup of any club was successful in prising Patrice away from Old Trafford because, at 32, he still has much to offer an elite-level team and has enjoyed a renaissance in form under David Moyes.

The Frenchman, regarded to be the world's best in his position just five years ago, has contributed to his team's attack with an accurate supply of crossing (23% find a team-mate) - some of which turned into direct assists (in total, he has provided 22 chances thus far this season).

Statistically-speaking, Evra's defending has also been on point as he has made 116 clearances, 27 interceptions and completed an astonishing 82% of his attempted tackles. He also only concedes a foul at a rate of one per game.

Centre back: John Terry - Chelsea (value = £8.8m)

Like Evra, the Chelsea skipper has faced accusations that he is far past prime form, however, his performances this season suggests otherwise as he is thriving under the tutelage of returning manager Jose Mourinho.

While Mourinho has rotated his strikers and his attacking midfield, there is one mainstay in defence as Terry has featured in every single available minute of Premier League football thus far this season.

Terry's experience will also be a perfect foil for his youthful partner in the heart of this Bosman defence.

Centre back: Marc Bartra - Barcelona (value = £5.3m)

Bartra is a quick and mobile defender, aerially-strong, positionally-wise and shows a maturity that belies his 22 years.

In 2012 he was the best defender in Liga Adelante, was promoted to the senior Cules and has high potential, meaning that if any club was able to poach the young Spaniard, it could very well go on to prove a bargain piece of business.

Bartra, though, is likely to renew terms with Camp Nou, despite being free to speak to other clubs. Just last month he mentioned that he will continue focusing on his job - playing football - while Barcelona and his agent thrash out personal terms.

Right back: Bacary Sagna - Arsenal (value = £10.5m)

It is tempting to field Bartra's Barcelona team-mate Martin Montoya next to him, however, the Arsenal man gets the nod as he is the ultimate 7/10 performer. He is not exceptional, but he is always consistent, like Javier Zanetti was for Internazionale.

Arsene Wenger must be sweating over Sagna's deal as he is reportedly interesting AS Monaco and Paris Saint Germain.

Central midfield: Xabi Alonso - Real Madrid (value = £16m)

Apparently reunions with both Anfield with Liverpool or Jose Mourinho, at Chelsea, may await Xabi Alonso, should he elect to depart the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu for the Premier League.

Since returning from a metatarsal fracture, Alonso has held down one of the midfield roles for Real Madrid and, despite his 32-years-of-age, remains a quality footballer due to his vision, set-piece threat, tackling, game-reading and passing range.

Central midfield: Andrea Pirlo - Juventus (value = £8.8m)

It is impossible to pass up the opportunity to recruit a legitimate pitch legend.

A World Cup winner with Italy, Pirlo is also a two-time Champions League winner and a four-time Scudetto collector. He claims the captain's armband for the Bosman selection.

Left forward: Thomas Ince - Blackpool (value = £6.6m)

With so much experience already in the team, a touch of youth can do no harm in one of the attacking positions and Ince is one of the most exciting players freely available to transfer in the summer.

Known for his positional variety on the pitch, Ince is a fine crosser of the football, a maker of key passes and a danger from set-play.

While his form for Blackpool this season (seven goals and six assists from 21 Championship matches) has attracted commendation in media columns (a goal/assist every 140 minutes) it should come as no surprise as it was precisely what he was doing last year (18 goals and 14 assists from 44 appearances).

Ince has been linked with Cardiff City, Swansea City, Newcastle United, Tottenham Hotspur, Ajax, Napoli, Juventus and Internazionale.

Right forward: Jeremy Menez - Paris Saint Germain (value = £16.5m)

When he was younger, he was likened to France legends Thierry Henry and Zinedine Zidane, but while his career path has obviously not exploded like the aforementioned greats, he remains a competent attacker capable of contributing key assists.

If he can recapture his form of 2011/12, where he supplied 17 assists and seven goals from 33 Ligue 1 appearances, then whomever he joins could be in for a good player.

Centre forward: Diego - Wolfsburg (value = £10.5m)

Like Menez, Diego's current form is a shadow of his former self, but it was not too many years ago where he was attracting the attention of a number of elite European clubs.

Just last year he scored ten and assisted seven times from 2,879 minutes of Bundesliga football.

Striker: Robert Lewandowski - Borussia Dortmund (value = £34.5m)

The stand-out player available on a Bosman deal but, unfortunately for both BVB and all the clubs who would relish the opportunity of having the Pole within their ranks, it has long appeared that he will link up with Bayern Munich in the summer.

Last season, he scored ten goals and two assists from 13 Champions League appearances, a strike efficiency return of a goal/assist every 90 minutes - this statistic alone, recorded in the very highest level of competition, suitably demonstrates the attacking prowess Lewandowski can brag as he was a fundamental cause of Dortmund's push to the final. 

This term, he has scored four and set-up three in the same tournament, bettering last season's strike rate, as he is so far responsible for a goal/assist every 76 minutes.

Substitutes: Victor Valdes, Martin Montoya, Urby Emanuelson, Fernando, Christian Noboa, Blaise Matuidi and Dimitar Berbatov.

image: © Jan S0L0

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