Maikel Kieftenbeld of Birmingham City
Derby County's proposed move for Maikel Kieftenbeld has failed to receive Football League ratification, forcing the midfielder to return to Birmingham City.
The news comes after Derby allowed two players - Craig Bryson and Jacob Butterfield - to leave in Kieftenbeld's position.
And Gary Rowett's side are looking worryingly thin on the ground in that department, with only Bradley Johnson, Tom Huddlestone and Jamie Hanson as available options.
With the loan window abolished last season, the Rams have little choice but to explore the free agent market if they wish to sign a replacement for the Dutchman.
So who's out there? Here are three of the most suitable candidates:
Released by Crystal Palace at the end of last season, Ledley is already said to have turned down a couple of Championship clubs, and it would be some surprise if he isn't snapped up soon. Still only 30, the former Celtic player continues to be picked for Wales despite being unemployed.
One of several high profile players let go by Norwich City earlier this year, Mulumbu was ironically linked with a move to Birmingham this week. That may be unlikely with Kieftenbeld returning, however, and Derby could profit. The former Paris Saint-Germain player boasts significant Premier League experience with West Bromwich Albion and Norwich.
The former Liverpool man helped Bolton Wanderers to promotion last season, but was unable to agree a new contract with the Trotters. According to reports this week, the pair could be set to resolve their issues, although a move to Derby may appeal to Spearing.
Anyone else? Mathieu Flamini, Jan Kirchhoff, Didier Digard, Lewis McGugan, Josh Wright
Which of the above would you like Derby to sign?