Manchester United spent money on key players in the summer transfer window, but there was a low-key free agent addition too.
Goalkeeper Tom Heaton signed after his Aston Villa contract expires and he is providing cover behind David de Gea and Dean Henderson.
It is possible United look at the free agent market again next summer, and the preparation for that should begin now.
United should be looking at potential players who have expiring contracts and considering whether they can fill gaps in the squad.
The most glaring gap is in midfield and fortunately there are a few bargain options who could be available – in addition to a more expensive signing in the position.
Here is a look at five stars who will be free agents in summer 2022 who could give United a boost…
AC Milan midfielder Franck Kessie impressed in both matches against Manchester United last season in the Europa League.
The Ivory Coast international would be a great fit at Old Trafford, he is an energetic box to box player who at 24 is one of the most sought-after soon to be free agents in Europe.
Like all of these players, United could try to beat the rush by securing a cut-price deal for Kessie in the January transfer window.
Croatian international Marcelo Brozovic has huge experience and could be United’s long awaited replacement for Michael Carrick.
Inter Milan have been unable to get Brozovic to agree a contract extension and United could try to tempt the Italian side into an early deal.
The 28-year-old still has plenty more to offer and he would be a major coup if United were able to get a deal done. He is the type of player who would come in and make a guaranteed instant impact.
Another experienced star, Manchester United know all about the quality Villarreal midfielder Manu Trigueros possesses.
Villarreal have let the midfielder’s deal run down, and while possible the 29-year-old extends, United could look to offer Trigueros a new challenge.
Trigueros has played more than 380 first team games for Villarreal and would be a solid addition to United’s options on a free transfer.
Marseille youngster Boubacar Kamara is the bargain alternative to Aurelien Tchouameni.
Just 21, Kamara won the eighth highest number of tackles in Ligue 1 last season, via FBRef.com, and had the 10th highest number of touches among all players.
While he would be more of a gamble than Brozovic, Kamara’s younger age may make him a more appealing option.
Bundesliga star Denis Zakaria recently came out on top in a duel with Jude Bellingham, scoring the winner for Moenchengladbach against Dortmund.
Zakaria, 24, is a Swiss international regular and could be a shrewd addition for United on a free.
The biggest challenge could be from Roma, with Fabrizio Romano recently reporting Jose Mourinho is attempting to try and sign Zakaria on a free too.
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