7 players Man Utd, Chelsea and Liverpool can still sign after deadline

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After three long months of transfers and speculation about players’ futures, the summer transfer window has finally shut after the September 1 deadline passed. But for some clubs like Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool, their business may be far from over as free agents continue to search for a new team to join.

Providing that a player has been released from their contract before the transfer deadline, they are eligible to join a club outside the transfer window. Of course, some of the more high-profile out-of-contract stars such as Antonio Rudiger and Paul Pogba have already been snapped up.

But for clubs scouring the market for a bargain, there are still plenty of opportunities for managers to add to their respective squads.

Express Sport looks at the players who could still move after the deadline passes on September 1, with a gruelling fixture schedule perhaps tempting managers into offering short-term deals.

Memphis Depay

The Dutch forward has been desperately trying to negotiate a contract termination with Barcelona after spending only one season in Catalonia, with a year still left to run on his current deal.

The 29-year-old scored 13 goals in his first season with the Blaugrana after being signed by Ronald Koeman. But he has seen his game time reduced under Xavi Hernandez, who is happy to let him leave after succeeding Koeman.

Multiple reports suggest Chelsea and West Ham reportedly enquired about signing the former Manchester United forward on a free transfer on deadline day and there could well be news of a late arrival in London ahead of this weekend’s Premier League action. 

Diego Costa

While there is a better chance of Costa scoring against Chelsea than rejoining his former club after his acrimonious exit in 2017, it must be remembered that the former Spain international was a lethal marksman in his prime.

The 33-year-old has been without a club since leaving Atletico Mineiro earlier this year and has been linked with a host of Premier League clubs, including Wolves, West Ham and even Arsenal at one stage.

His record of 52 goals in 89 Premier League games at Chelsea is not to be sniffed at, although the enigmatic striker has a tendency to leave a trail of controversy behind him wherever he goes. But if the goals dry up for top-flight clubs this winter, Costa could be the man they call.

Dan-Axel Zagadou

Remember Liverpool’s defensive crisis in 2021 that saw them pair Nathaniel Phiilips and Rhys Williams at centre-back? Jurgen Klopp may keep a close eye on Dan-Axel Zagadou’s situation if something similar were to arise.

The Frenchman spent five years with Borussia Dortmund but turned down a new deal with the Black Yellow as he was only ever considered a bit-part player at Signal Iduna Park.

But as a rare left-footed centre-back, he offers a valuable option for coaches who play with a three-man defence. And as an emergency signing, the 23-year-old would represent a sound addition to any Premier League team.

Ross Barkley

Chelsea agreed to release Barkley from his £100,000-a-week contract with 10 months still to run in order to help the former England international secure a deal with a new club. As of yet, no club had taken a punt on the midfielder.

There has been talk of a move from Scotland’s two biggest clubs in Celtic and Rangers, while Newcastle and Southampton have been credited with an interest. A move back to Goodison Park to reunite with his former club and previous boss Frank Lampard seems like the most likely option for the 28-year-old, who will be itching to prove he can still cut it at the highest level.

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Jason Denayer

Formerly on the books of Manchester City, Denayer surprisingly left Lyon this summer despite his importance to the Ligue 1 club, making 139 appearances for the French club.

So far, the Belgian defender has had no takers as he looks for a new challenge, although Wolves are believed to have held talks about a switch to Molineux after selling Willy Boly to Nottingham Forest.

Juan Mata

In terms of experience, there aren’t many more accustomed to the English top-flight than Mata. After spending a decade with Chelsea and Manchester United, the Spaniard left to explore his options ahead of one final move.

A tenuous link with Leeds United proved to be nothing more paper talk, while a return to Spain with his boyhood club Real Oviedo has been mooted.

But The Daily Mail claim Mata reportedly turned down offers from MLS clubs in the United States as he wants to continue playing at the highest level in Europe, suggesting the 34-year-old may feel holding out a little while longer for another Premier League club is worth the wait.

Tom Rogic

Few players have been as consistent in Scottish football as Australian midfielder Rogic, which is why it is a small surprise that the 29-year-old has not yet found a new home after leaving Celtic.

The central midfielder left Parkhead after nine years at the club and over 200 appearances. However, proposed moves to Indonesia and Cyprus have both fallen through, with Australia coach Graham Arnold keen to discover what lies ahead for his future ahead of selecting his World Cup squad.

Even as a squad player, a spell in the Premier League could do wonders for his chances and prove that Rogic belongs in one of Europe’s top five leagues. But with murmurs of a possible retirement, according to The Daily Record, that remains a big if right now.

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