Transfer Rumours: 21 Best Players in the World Whose Contracts Expire in 2012

Allan JiangTransfers CorrespondentDecember 7, 2011

Transfer Rumours: 21 Best Players in the World Whose Contracts Expire in 2012

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    With contracts expiring next year, these players are more than likely going to move in January, unless clubs are willing to forfeit them for next to nothing. 

    You don't care about the third string goalkeeper's contract expiring in 2012 but you should care if it was one of your club's ace players.

    Here are the 21 best players in the world whose contracts expire next year. 

    It's a must read if you want to gauge how serious your club is in keeping this player or selling them in January. 

Heurelho Gomes

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    I see a lot of Fabien Barthez in Heurelho Gomes and the photo by Vladimir Rys, a beautiful photo, sums up Gomes' feelings right now. 

    Outcast. Outside looking in. Rejected. 

    The question is: Will a top tier club take him? 

    I'd be surprised if a club would. 

Sulley Muntari

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    Sulley Muntari hasn't started for Inter Milan since January. 

    Though his performances for Sunderland on loan still indicate he can do a job. 

    He's on his way out and a right medial collateral ligament knee strain will make Inter Milan's decision to sell him in January easier. 

José Bosingwa

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    José Bosingwa started well to the season and then regressed to the point where he lost his starting position. 

    His defence has been appalling and it won't get any better. 

    Cut him lose. 

Michael Owen

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    I feel sorry for Michael Owen.

    He left Liverpool, where he could have been a legend, to chase European glory, then Liverpool win the UEFA Champions League the season he leaves. 

    I remember him not playing Champions League games to avoid being cup-tied for Real Madrid

    Since then, his career has never been the same. 

René Adler

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    Bayer Leverkusen goalkeeper René Adler has been at the club since 2000.

    Coming off a long-term injury with his contract expiring in 2012, Bernd Leno being the club's best player is an unfortunate conundrum. 

Tomáš Rosický

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    Illness, a groin injury, a thigh injury and knee injury have disrupted Tomáš Rosický's year but what's new?

    You just wonder why this wasn't shown on his medical.

    Same with Owen Hargreaves at Manchester United

    It would be better if Rosický can find a new club where he can start and influence. 

Jefferson Farfán

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    Jefferson Farfán has been one of Schalke's better midfielders and his contract ends in 2012. 

    According to Thomas Zocher at Sky Sports, Schalke are open to selling him in January but only for least €10million. 

Salomon Kalou

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    Salomon Kalou is a archetypal example of what happens to a player when his progress is repeatedly stunted. 

    He spends more time warming the benches than actually playing. 

    He's 26 now and it would a better career decision if he moves to a mid-tier club and becomes a star because he has the ability to do so. 

Frédéric Kanouté

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    I'd take Manu and Álvaro Negredo over Frédéric Kanouté.

    Mind you, age has caught up with the Malian forward, yet he has still scored four goals in 12 games. 

    With his contract ending 2012 and him probably wanting a payday and some playing time, going to Qatar or China doesn't seem out of the question. 

    Unless he wants to stay at Sevilla, even though the writing is on the wall. 

Nicolas Anelka

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    It's a disgrace how Romelu Lukaku has been treated and he's been second choice to Nicolas Anelka, whose agent had been orchestrating deals to leave Stamford Bridge. 

    Anelka will make a stop to Shanghai Shenhua, who have gone to the lengths to potentially hire French manager Jean Tigana, and shout "show me the money!"

Daniele De Rossi

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    The way I read the situation of Roma stalwart Daniele De Rossi is that he wants more money, yet Roma don't think he's worth that money. 

    This equates to a standoff and an elongated contract negotiation.

    Any Roma fan who can see the situation objectively cannot deny De Rossi has been below par at best (and that's putting it nicely). 

    This guy last season clearly had psychological issues because he was going onto the field and elbowing people, not once but twice. 

    Need I not remind you his horrific elbow on Brian McBride. 

Gary Cahill

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    Bolton Wanderers mucked this one up big time, thinking Gary Cahill would continue his great form, thus allowing them to sell at a higher price—he's been terrible. 

    Chelsea better not buy him because why buy a centre back who is lacking form? 

    I hope Liverpool don't buy him either because it will stunt the progress of Sebastián Coates. 

Junior Hoilett

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    Junior Hoilett will be a smart man if he doesn't sign a contract extension at a sinking Blackburn Rovers and moves on to bigger and better things.

    He has been in career-best form and it only makes sense if he forces a move in January. 

Gennaro Gattuso

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    Gennaro Gattuso wants to respect his contract, even amidst Anzhi Makhachkala's interest, yet A.C. Milan are unlikely to care about his loyalty. 

    They will not offer him a new contract and they probably will hide behind the reason of Gattuso suffering from paralysis of the optic nerve. 

    I'm no doctor but that sounds pretty serious and it's his eyes. 

    He was always a reckless tackler. How is he going to put in tackles if his eyes aren't working? 

Walter Samuel

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    Lucio's contract has been extended to 2014, yet Walter Samuel's contract hasn't. 

    Having ruptured a right anterior cruciate ligament last October, with Inter Milan in disarray and with the emergence of Andrea Ranocchia—Samuel's days are numbered. 

Florent Malouda

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    Florent Malouda's performances as of late have been lackluster and it's obvious he's not part of André Villas-Boas' plans. 

    Plus, Malouda doesn't deserve a contract extension. He's 31, he's not having a good season and he can't offer anything except being a bit part player off the bench. 

    It would be better promoting someone within the academy to fill that spot or sign a promising teenager. 

Riccardo Montolivo

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    I was surprised Riccardo Montolivo didn't leave Fiorentina in the summer having made it clear he didn't want to sign a contract extension. 

    Maybe Fiorentina don't mind if he leaves for nothing in the summer. 

    January will be their last chance to sell him—perhaps to A.C. Milan, who are already loaded with midfield talent. 

Cristian Chivu

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    Inter Milan need to look to the future and given the mess they're in, a clean out is in order—which means arrivederci Cristian Chivu. 

    According to Chivu's agent, several big clubs are after the versatile Romanian defender, and that would make sense. 

    I see Real Madrid and Manchester City wanting to increase their already deep depth charts with a proven defender. 

Mathieu Flamini

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    Mathieu Flamini made a terrible career decision to ditch Arsenal, where he was treated like a prince, to leave for A.C. Milan where he's merely a court jester. 

    A great team player, a water carrier as Eric Cantona used to say, Flamini's situation is complicated. 

    He's done a cruciate ligament so he's out to at least February and I can't see why A.C. Milan would give him a long-term contract.

    Maybe a 1-2 contract extension, but would Flamini want that? 

Dimitar Berbatov

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    Anzhi Makhachkala would seem a good move for both parties if both are in the business of cashing in. 

    If Dimitar Berbatov harbors aspirations in playing in La Liga or the Serie A then that could be a barrier. 

Didier Drogba

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    Didier Drogba's performance last night against Valencia conjured up memories of the old Drogba.

    Bullying defenders, working hard, making incisive passes and of course scoring goals. 

    Though, I believe Chelsea need to evolve and Drogba is of the past, it's time to give Romelu Lukaku a go. 

Your Opinion

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    Of the 22 players on the list, who do you want your club to sign? 

    Who do you want your club to keep?

    Please also read Cristiano Ronaldo's 10 Greatest Goals for Real Madrid

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