Hyundai A-League free agent watch

With the transfer windows in most European countries having closed this week, Hyundai A-League clubs are expected to get more active before the 2014-15 season begins next month. With David Villa shining his light on the league, anything’s possible as clubs look for an edge ahead of season 10.

Some local outfits have already filled all the import spots in their squad but, for those that haven’t, there is the possibility of enticing a free agent from abroad.

While free agents can sign for any club outside of a transfer window, the majority of European clubs will have settled on their squads for the new campaign, so they could be tempted to give Australia a go.

Reports suggest Sydney FC are in negotiations with former West Ham United full-back George McCartney, who is still looking for a club, and the 33-year-old is exactly the type of player that can be targeted at this stage of the pre-season.

Goal Australia has compiled a list of potential targets after rummaging through lists of free agents and has also nominated the Hyundai A-League club that could best utilise each player.

Florent Malouda

Position: Left-winger

Age: 34

Most recent club: Trabzonspor (Turkey)

Most suitable Hyundai A-League club:  Melbourne Victory

Description: The former Chelsea man was one of the Premier League’s leading players only a few years back and did relatively well in the Turkish Super Lig last season, playing 19 matches for five goals. The ex-France international remains a highly-skilled player and has only been released by Trabzonspor as they look to reduce their wage bill. With Victory keen on a left-sided attacker to replace James Troisi, Malouda would be perfect and could potentially blow the Hyundai A-League apart. His wage demands – reportedly £50,000 per week – would never be met by a Hyundai  A-League club, however, Australia’s lifestyle would have to be emphasised to convince him to move.

Another option: Matthew Etherington (ex-Stoke City)


Position: Striker

Age: 30

Most recent club: El Jaish (Qatar)

Most suitable Hyundai A-League club: Perth Glory

Description: After two seasons in the Qatar Stars League, Nilmar is looking for a club after leaving El Jaish by mutual consent. At 30 years of age, the Brazilian striker still has plenty of football left in him and after earning big bucks in the Middle East, he may be interested in a different challenge. The former Villarreal man would provide Glory marquee striker Andy Keogh with some real competition, while Perth’s weather would surely suit a player who has played in the sun of Brazil, Spain and Qatar. Nilmar only scored four goals in 18 games last season but may enjoy the extra space on offer in the free-flowing Hyundai A-League.

Another option: Park Chu-young (ex-Arsenal)

Hugo Almeida

Position: Striker

Age: 30

Most recent club: Besiktas (Turkey)

Most suitable A-League club: Melbourne City

Description: The powerful Portuguese centre forward has never had much pace but with David Villa set to leave City after only 10 games to link up with New York City FC, John van ‘t Schip will need another striking option to complement David Williams. Almeida would provide City with a real point of difference up front and his 191-centimetre frame would be the perfect target for winger Damien Duff. The Portugal international played less than half an hour at the World Cup after injuring his hamstring in the first match but 37 goals in 88 matches for Besiktas shows he is still a genuine threat.

Another option: Nikola Zigic (ex-Birmingham City)

Joseph Yobo

Position: Central defender

Age: 33

Most recent club: Fenerbahce (Turkey)

Most suitable Hyundai A-League club: Sydney FC

Description: Yobo captained Nigeria at the World Cup in Brazil and while he only made nine combined league appearances at Fenerbahce and on loan at Norwich City last season, the experienced defender played 89 matches the previous three campaigns in Turkey and has 228 Premier League games to his name. The Nigerian’s experience would improve just about any Hyundai A-League side. Sydney FC need defensive back  up and with Yobo signed, Graham Arnold could even consider playing Nikola Petkovic as a holding midfielder or switch to a back three.

Another option: Luke Young (ex-QPR)

Fabio Rochemback

Position: Midfielder

Age: 32

Most recent club: Dalian Aerbin (China)

Most suitable Hyundai A-League club: Melbourne Victory

Description: With Barcelona experience, Adelaide United might seem the best option for Rochemback but the Brazilian would slot in nicely at Victory if Kevin Muscat wants to play 4-3-3 this season and forgo signing a left winger. Rochemback and Mark Milligan could roam ahead of Carl Valeri, providing support to the forwards.

After two seasons in China, where he played 51 games, Rochemback may be keen on Australia’s lifestyle, while his versatility could see him play a holding role or out wide. The Internacional youth product also counts Sporting Lisbon, Middlesbrough and Gremio as former employers, and his dead-ball ability provides an X-factor.

Another option: Jack Collison (ex-West Ham United)