Catalogue of 131 Championship free agents as Stoke City prepare for summer transfer spree

Axel Tuanzebe, Cedric Kipre and Paddy McNair are among the Championship players heading towards the end of their contracts.
Axel Tuanzebe, Cedric Kipre and Paddy McNair are among the Championship players heading towards the end of their contracts. -Credit:Getty

It is that time of year when supporters get to scour the catalogue of prospective free agents and ponder where their club will try to find bargains in the Championship.

There are 131 players coming towards the end of their terms in the second tier according to the transfermarkt database and there are familiar names on there including Stoke City old boys Asmir Begovic (QPR), Axel Tuanzebe (Ipswich), Erik Pieters (West Brom), Danny Batth (Norwich), Joe Allen (Swansea), Sam Clucas (Rotherham), Romaine Sawyers (Cardiff), Scott Hogan (Birmingham) and Lee Gregory (Sheffield Wednesday).

There are eye-catching names too, like Wilfred Ndidi, who has been linked with Everton and Newcastle United after helping Leicester secure promotion as champions. Coventry playmaker Callum O’Hare has been linked with Aston Villa, Southampton striker Che Adams has also been put on Everton’s radar.

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There are players who have 12-month options to extend their current deals, such as Stoke’s own Jordan Thompson and Blackburn duo Sam Gallagher and Tyrhys Dolan. And there are others who seem destined to move on somewhere across the division over the next few weeks and months. Ipswich are expected to tie down keeper Vaclav Hladky.

The Teesside Gazette says about Paddy McNair, for example: “McNair seems likely to be looking for a new club this summer after six years at the club. While he's always given his all for Boro and deserves a good send off if he recovers from his injury in time to be involved, the wage he would likely want is now beyond Boro's means for a player like McNair, who hasn't been considered a regular under Carrick.”

Kelechi Iheanacho is going to be up for grabs from Leicester.

The Leicester Mercury says: “Iheanacho has not started a game for City since December 2 and over the past few weeks appears to have dropped down to the bottom of the club’s striker pecking order. That does not bode well for him getting a new contract. While he can be infuriating and clumsy at times, Iheanacho has delivered plenty of great moments and was the hero of the club’s FA Cup run.”

West Brom supporters are anxious about Cedric Kipre and Alex Mowatt, who have re-emerged as key figures under Carlos Corberan. Preston North End captain Alan Browne, fresh from winning their player of the year award for a second time, has been given a deadline about signing a deal to stay put.

So here is a run through of this summer’s prospective free agents. Who would you like to see on Stoke’s short list? Have your say in the comments section.

GOALKEEPER: Christian Walton (aged 28, one-year option), Cameron Dawson (28), Alex McCarthy (34), Vaclav Hladky (33), Neil Etheridge (34), Asmir Begovic (36), Callum Burton (27), Bartosz Bialkowski (36), Ben Hamer (36), Simon Moore (33), Blondy Nna Noukeu (22), Jamie Jones (35), Ted Cann (23), James Pradic (18), Nathaniel Ford (19, one-year option), Joe Walsh (22), Bradley Mayo (19), Giosue Bellagambi (22).

RIGHT-BACK: Danny McNamara (25), Jeremy Ngakia (23), Wes Harding (27), Cyrus Christie (31, one-year option), Osman Kakay (26), Janoi Donacien (30), Marcel Oakley (21), Martin Kelly (34), Liam Palmer (32), Lee Peltier (37), Kyle Naughton (35).

LEFT-BACK: Dimitrios Giannoulis (28), Sam McCallum (23), Sam Byram (30), Jamilu Collins (29), Tyler Blackett (30), Brendan Galloway (28), Enda Stevens (33).

CENTRE-BACK: Paddy McNair (29), Jannik Vestergaard (31), Jake Cooper (29), Cédric Kipré (27), Jimmy Dunne (26, one-year option), Axel Tuanzebe (26, one-year option), Yuta Nakayama (27), Ben Gibson (31), Di'Shon Bernard (23), Liam Cooper (32), Cameron Burgess (28, one-year option), Dominic Iorfa (28), Sean Morrison (33), Danny Batth (33, one-year option), Marc Roberts (33), Erik Pieters (35), Grant Hall (32), Ciaran Clark (34), Patrick Bauer (31), Greg Cunningham (33), Kyle McFadzean (37), Greg Cunningham (33), Ciaran Brennan (23), Aaron Drewe (23).

CENTRAL MIDFIELD: Wilfred Ndidi (27), Nathaniel Chalobah (29), Ivan Sunjic (27), Yann M'Vila (33), Jacob Lungi Sörensen (26, one-year option), Will Vaulks (30), Hakeem Odoffin (26), Dominic Ball (28), Jake Livermore (34), Jonathan Hogg (35), Dennis Praet (29), Alex Mowatt (29), Alan Browne (29), Stuart Armstrong (32), George Saville (30), Oliver Rathbone (27), Joe Williams (27), John Fleck (32), Greg Docherty (27), Jordan Thompson (27, one-year option), Matty James (32), Jamie Lindsay (28), Brahima Diarra (20), Cafú (31), Liam Kelly (34), Joe Allen (34), Gary Gardner (31), Elijah Dixon-Bonner (23), Sam Clucas (33), Liam Walsh (26), Ryan Leonard (31), Barry Bannan (34), Jonathan Howson (35), Andy King (35), Corry Evans (33).

ATTACKING MIDFIELD: Callum O'Hare (26), Adama Traoré (28), Bradley Dack (30, one-year option), Ben Woodburn (24, one-year option), Romaine Sawyers (32), Josh Windass (30), Jamie Paterson (32), Keshi Anderson (29, one-year option), Will Jenkins-Davies (19).

RIGHT WING: Marc Albrighton (34), Tyrhys Dolan (22, one-year option), Matt Phillips (33), Vaughn Covil (20), Sone Aluko (35), Albert Adomah (36).

LEFT WING: Adam Reach (31), Mickel Miller (28), Ellis Taylor (21), Shane Ferguson (32), Chris Willock (26), Przemyslaw Placheta (26).

CENTRE-FORWARD: Ché Adams (27), Kelechi Iheanacho (27), Aaron Connolly (24), Tyrese Campbell (24), Sam Gallagher (28, one-year option), Wesley Moraes (27), Jamie Vardy (37), Sinclair Armstrong (20, one-year option), Scott Hogan (32), Tom Bradshaw (31), Kayden Jackson (30), Lukas Jutkiewicz (35), Billy Sharp (38), Ched Evans (35), Lee Gregory (35).

Any you would fancy at Stoke? Have your say in the comments section