Browne, Gibson, Connolly - Every Championship free agent so far as Stoke City scour transfer market

Alan Browne, who has been offered a new deal by Preston North End; Ben Gibson, who is leaving Norwich City; and Aaron Connolly, who is leaving Hull City, are among the Championship free agents this summer.
Alan Browne, who has been offered a new deal by Preston North End; Ben Gibson, who is leaving Norwich City; and Aaron Connolly, who is leaving Hull City, are among the Championship free agents this summer. -Credit:Getty

Joe Allen has signed a new one-year contract at Swansea City as former Stoke City teammates Danny Batth, Scott Hogan and Sam Clucas join a quickly-growing list of experienced Championship freebies.

Retained lists are being confirmed up and down the division, with a host of familiar names running to the end of their contracts. Batth is one of four first team regulars to leave Norwich City after their play-off semi-final defeat along with Ben Gibson, Sam McCallum and Dimitris Giannoulis.

Blackburn Rovers have trigger extensions for Sam Gallagher and Tyrhys Dolan - and will sit down with the duo to discuss their long-term futures - while they are in talks with veterans Kyle McFadzean and John Fleck.

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Liam Walsh and Przemyslaw Placheta are leaving Swansea but Kyle Naughton and Allen are staying and Jamie Paterson has been offered new terms. Hogan is among the players released by relegated Birmingham City as they prepare for life in League One, with news confirmed today that they will need a new permanent manager too. Tony Mowbray has stood down after missing the last few months of the season due to health reasons.

Aaron Connolly and Greg Docherty are leaving Hull while Shaun Hutchinson and Bartosz Bialkowski have been let go by Millwall.

Preston North End have released Greg Cunningham and Ben Woodburn and are in talks about new deals with Alan Browne and Ched Evans, who has been offered a player-coach role. Corry Evans and Bradley Dack are set for the Sunderland exit.

Lee Gregory, the former Stoke striker, has already signed for Mansfield Town as his contract at Sheffield Wednesday comes to an end. Wednesday are in talks about extensions with six other players, including Barry Bannan and Josh Windass.

Andreas Weimann is on Bristol City's released list after spending the second half of the season on loan at West Brom. He left Ashton Gate in January when it was clear he wasn't going to get his deal extended beyond this season and is now in the market for a new club.

BristolLive explained at the time: "Weimann has increasingly found himself on the periphery of Liam Manning’s first XI and with less than six months remaining on his contract in BS3, City have ultimately secured some value in the forward, rather than watch him depart for nothing in the summer while having to pay his salary for the remainder of his stay."

Weimann has chipped in with two goals and two assists in four starts and eight substitute appearances since switching to the Hawthorns and he has been used across midfield and attack.

Midfielder Matty James is also leaving Bristol City while talks are ongoing with Joe Williams and Romani Rowe. Midfielder Williams, aged 27, has been a key figure this season and "surely won’t be short of offers elsewhere in the Championship". He came through the ranks at Everton and has built a reputation as a 'ruthless competitor'.

Coventry City favourite Liam Kelly has been released too. The captain has played 180 games for the club since 2017, helping win promotion from League Two and League One, reach the Championship play-off final and this season's FA Cup semi-final. Manager Mark Robins is in talks to extend the stay of star man Callum O'Hare.

Stoke old boy Clucas is leaving Rotherham after a season. The 33-year-old midfielder has played 32 times, scoring once and setting up two, in what proved a difficult year for the Millers. Steve Evans joined in the final week of the season as their third manager and they had long been relegated to League One by that point.

Ten other players are to be released too, including defenders Sean Morrison, Lee Peltier, Grant Hall and Tyler Blackett and midfielders Cafu and Shane Ferguson.

Stoke have addressed the contract situation of players around the first team squad. Tyrese Campbell is leaving, Jordan Thompson has had a 12-month option taken. Enda Stevens and Frank Fielding are staying while Ciaran Clark and Wesley depart.

Championship retained lists

Birmingham City

Released: Marc Roberts, Scott Hogan, Ivan Sunjic, Gary Gardner, Neil Etheridge

In talks: Lukas Jutkiewicz, John Ruddy

Blackburn Rovers

In talks: Kyle McFadzean, John Fleck

Extended: Sam Gallagher, Tyrhys Dolan

Bristol City

Released: Matty James, Andy King, Andreas Weimann, Ben Acey, Zac Bell, McIntosh Boyd, Marlee Francois, Callum Hutton, Duncan Idehen, Dylan Kadji, Harry Leeson, Harvey Wiles-Richards

In talks: Joe Williams, Romani Rowe

Coventry City

Released: Liam Kelly, Simon Moore, Dermi Lusala, Bradley Stretton

In talks: Callum O'Hare, Luke Bell

Huddersfield Town

Released: Yuta Nakayama, Jordan Rhodes, Brahima Diarra, Aaron Rowe, Connor Mahoney

In talks: Jonathan Hogg

Hull City

Released: Greg Docherty, Billy Sharp, Vaughn Covil, Aaron Connolly, Adama Traoré, Cyrus Christie, David Robson


Released: Shaun Hutchinson, Bartosz Bialkowski

In talks: Karlan Grant, Tom Leahy, Chinwike Okoli, Kyle Smith, Sha'mar Lawson

Norwich City

Released: Ben Gibson, Dimitris Giannoulis, Sam McCallum, Danny Batth, Jon McCracken

In talks: Ken Aboh

Extended: Jacob Sorensen, Archie Mair

Preston North End

Released: Greg Cunningham, Ben Woodburn

In talks: Alan Browne, Lewis Leigh, Ched Evans

Rotherham United

Released: Cafu, Curtis Durose, Grant Hall, Joel Holvey, Lee Peltier, Nat Ford, Sam Clucas, Sean Morrison, Shane Ferguson, Tolaji Bola, Tyler Blackett

In talks: Jamie Lindsay

Sheffield Wednesday

Released: Lee Gregory, Tyreeq Bakinson, George Byers, Juan Delgado, Reece James

In talks: Barry Bannan, Di'Shon Bernard, Dominic Iorfa, Liam Palmer, Will Vaulks, Josh Windass

Extended: Marvin Johnson, Callum Patterson

Stoke City

Released: Tyrese Campbell, Ciaran Clark, Wesley

Extended: Enda Stevens, Jordan Thompson, Frank Fielding

Swansea City

Released: Liam Walsh, Przemyslaw Placheta

In talks: Jamie Paterson, Richard Faayke

Extended: Kyle Naughton, Joe Allen, Liam Cullen, Nathan Wood, Azeem Abdulai, Josh Thomas


Released: Corry Evans, Bradley Dack, Jack Diamond, Ellis Taylor

In talks: Cuba Mitchell, Daniel Cameron, Henry Fieldson, Jenson Jones, Luke Bell, Tom Lavery

Any names catch your eye? Have your say in the comments section