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Every season we see a select number of fairly high-profile players leave clubs in the summer due to their contracts coming to an end, but rarely have we ever been treated to a wave of top-quality footballers such as we are likely to see this season. We have compiled our list of the top 10 players that are currently set to leave their respective clubs at the end of the 2020/21 campaign and we have also included a section of other noteworthy players that would make decent free transfer signings this summer.
1 – Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi has been part of the Barcelona first-team since the 2004/05 season and after breaking all kinds of records and winning every trophy and personal accolades there are to win at one club, he could finally leave the Catalonians when his contract expires this summer. Obviously, the likes of Man City, Man Utd, Juventus, Inter Milan, Bayern Munich and PSG have all been alerted to Messi's situation and are keenly watching how discussions with his current employers go. During his time in Catalonia, Messi has played 773 games for Barcelona, scoring 667 competitive goals, and at the age of 33, he still has plenty left to offer the beautiful game.
2 – Gianluigi Donnarumma
At 22, Donnarumma is probably the more sort-after goalkeeper in world football and if he does decide to leave AC Milan this summer then he will receive some unbelievable contract offers from the top clubs in European football. Donnarumma already has 25 gaps for Italy and has established himself as AC Milan's No.1 goalkeeper since making his debut in 2015. Likened to Buffon, Donnarumma certainly has a fantastic future ahead of him and it will be interesting to see what he decides to do this summer.
3 – David Alaba
Alaba has already been linked with a move to the Premier League and there will no doubt be clubs lining up to offer the Austrian utility man a contract if he does indeed decide to leave Bayern Munich this summer. It feels like Alaba has been around for ages, yet he remains 28-years old and right in the prime of his playing days. Bayern are keen to keep the defender/midfielder but talks have so far been unsuccessful.
4 – Memphis Depay
Depay has rediscovered his form at Lyon following a disappointing time at Man Utd, with his performances encouraging links to the likes of Barcelona this summer. We don't think it is likely that we will see Depay chance the Premier League again and if he does make the move to Barcelona, he might not be playing alongside Messi which is bound to be disappointing.
5 – Georginio Wijnaldum
It appears as if Liverpool have no chance of keeping Wijnaldum as the player appears desperate to move to Spain and play for Barcelone. Koeman is a big fan of the midfielders, having managed him with the Dutch national team, but again, this deal much like the Depay transfer may well depend on what Messi decides to do. Wijnaldum played a key part in Liverpool winning the Premier League last season but his club's performance in 2020/21 has given him plenty of reasons to move on.
6 – Sergio Aguero
Sergio Aguero has been phenomenal for Man City but this season his injuries have limited his appearances and at the age of 32, it's hard to justify the Argentinian with a new lucrative contract. Perhaps if he agreed to a ‘pay when you play' deal, he might remain at Man city beyond the summer but that seems very unlikely. There will be plenty of teams interested in taking on this expert finisher next season and we believe that Aguero would do a decent job in a slower-paced league like Serie A.
7 – Sergio Ramos
At 35, you might think Sergio Ramos's days in top-level football are coming to an end but Real Madrid are desperate to keep him at the club and the Spanish international has been heavily linked with a free transfer move to the Premier League. There is no doubt that Ramos's style of play and aggression would be suited to English football and if he is going to finally make the move to the Premier League, then now would be his last realistic opportunity to do so.
8 – Julian Draxler
Draxler's career at PSG seemed to be stagnating until the arrival of their new manager, Pochettino, so it will be interesting to see what happens between now and the end of the season. The former Wolfsburg and Schalke man has had his issues with injury but at the age of 27, he could well earn a move to another big club if he decides to leave PSG this summer.
9 – Jerome Boateng
The 32-year old former Man City defender has been impressive for Bayern Munich this season but looks set to leave the club and has even been linked with a move back to the Premier League with Chelsea. Tuchel will know Boateng all too well and Chelsea like to play a defensive style of football so it isn't surprising to see the German international being targeted by the Stamford Bridge club.
10 – Hakan Calhanoglu
Calhanoglu made his name in Germany with Bayer Leverkusen and has done well in Italy with AC Milan. However, the 27-year old looks set to leave his current employers at the end of this season and has already been linked with a move to the Premier League. The Turkish international is a set-piece specialist and likes to create and score goals from midfield.
Noteworthy Expiring Contracts
Here is a list of other players whose contracts are due to expire this summer, most of which seem to play for Crystal Palace!
Florian Thauvin, Emerson Royal, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Eric Garcia, Lucas Vazquez. Santos Borre, Elseid Hysaj, Moussa Marega, Mikola Maksimovic, Rui Silva, Ryan Bertrand, Joshua King, Marko Dmitrovic, Vincent Aboubakar, Romain Saiss, Juan Mata, Javi Martinez, John Lundstram, Nicolas N'Koulou, Edinson Cavani, Mamadou Sakho, Aissa Mandi, Andros Townsend, Patrick van Aanholt, Danilo D'Ambrosio, Jeffrey Schlupp, Cristian Benteke and Jordan Amavi.