F365's Top Ten Players That Need A Move

It's the time of year when managers look through their squad lists before frowning and putting a question mark next to one name. Daniel Storey picks ten that need to move on...

Last Updated: 08/07/14 at 10:00 Post Comment

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10) Martin Kelly

Whilst the likes of Tiago Ilori, Andre Wisdom and Jack Robinson would also like to follow the lead of Jon Flanagan and break into Liverpool's first team set-up, for Martin Kelly the situation is a little more critical - he is now 24.

The 2010/11 and 2011/12 campaigns brought 22 league starts, but since then the right-back has managed just four in two seasons. That was largely due to injury, but he played just 108 Premier League minutes during the last campaign despite being declared fully fit in October. If he doesn't threaten Glen Johnson's place soon or move on, he's likely to become nothing more than the difficult answer to the question 'Can you name England's No. 5 at Euro 2012?'


9) Morgan Schneiderlin

Mauricio Pochettino, Luke Shaw, Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana have already left St Mary's, whilst Dejan Lovren is doing his best attempt to alienate everyone at Southampton and force through a move.

Next up is surely Schneiderlin, who appeared for France at the World Cup. After all, no-one wants to be the last one left at a party.


8) Thomas Vermaelen

Vermaelen was in various stages of disrepair during last season, but there is also little doubt that he is no longer seen as a first-choice in Arsenal's defence. When such a scenario befalls the club captain, that's a fair indicator that you need to move on.

Vermaelen is not a bad defender, but suffers slightly from being a jack of all trades rather than excelling at any particular aspect of the game. Put simply, Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker he ain't, and the defender must be pinching himself slightly at talk of Manchester United making a £12million move. The last Belgian they bought went down pretty well.


7) Tom Cleverley

A let-down, a wasted talent or a victim of heightened expectation? Cleverley has never truly impressed at Old Trafford, but perhaps that is because supporters at both club and international level craved him to be the answer to all of their central midfield woes. That has obviously never materialised, but is Cleverley to blame for him not being the next Paul Scholes, or are we? Is this simply the poster boy for the English sporting mantra of 'build them up, then knock them down'?

Whatever the case, he's best out of Old Trafford, left to twiddle his thumbs whilst the arrival of Ander Herrera pushes him further back in the queue.


6) Charles N'Zogbia

Yes, that's right, N'Zogbia still exists. Now 28, it is only four years since this Bright Young Thing was being linked with a move to Arsenal, but a spell at Villa Park have not been kind to young Charles.

Injured for the whole of last season, the Frenchman started only 11 league games in the previous campaign, and yet Paul Lambert still seems intent on keeping N'Zogbia at the club. "It's just in my opinion he isn't ready for training in the first team at the minute. It's too much for him," was Lambert's assessment in April, and little more has been said.

Get a move, get fit, get firing and try and reignite a career that has slowed to a snail's pace.


5) Jon Obi Mikel

In many ways, Mikel is a victim of comparison and circumstance, tipped to be one of the brightest stars in world football when Chelsea poached him from under the nose of Manchester United - it's a move that has clearly fallen on its arse.

Things don't look any more hopeful this season for the Nigerian gaining first-team football. In midfield alone he has Willian, Cesc Fabregas, Oscar, Nemanja Matic, Marco van Ginkel, Ramires and Eden Hazard to fight for a position, not to mention the cluster of players loaned out last season by Chelsea. One suspects that Mikel would do well to move to Italy or Spain, where his reputation has a chance to be redeemed.


4) Marouane Fellaini

Whether or not the alleged words of Louis van Gaal ("not a United type of player") are fact or fiction, the feeling remains that Fellaini has been irrevocably tarnished by his association with David Moyes and, whilst the Scot may have left the club, many United supporters would prefer the midfielder do the same.

Fellaini actually impressed during the World Cup further up the pitch, acting almost as an enforcer in the opposition penalty area, but with Shinji Kagawa, Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata all vying for positions in behind the striker at Old Trafford, such a wish is unlikely to come true. £27.5million utterly wasted.


3) Jack Rodwell

Like Cleverley before him, Rodwell is evidently not a bad player, but has simply suffered from a large fee and the tag of being the Next Big Thing in England's midfield. When you couple that with a tendency to pick up injuries whenever chances are afforded, it is clear Rodwell no longer merits a place in the squad of the Premier League champions.

There will be no shortage of takers, however, with Newcastle, Sunderland, Everton and West Brom just a few of the names interested in reinvigorating and rejuvenating a career on the wane. At just 23, he at least has time on his side.


2) Lewis Holtby

Arrived as the fresh-faced golden boy, but Holtby's Spurs career now looks very grubby indeed. Loaned out to a team last season that were promptly relegated, the German presumably strode up to Mauricio Pochettino on his first day and said "Hi boss, nice to meet you, I'm kind of a big deal round here. Promise."

Pochettino's probable response was probably to point to Paulinho, Christian Eriksen, Sandro, Andros Townsend, Nabil Bentaleb, Etienne Capoue, Nacer Chadli, Moussa Dembele and Gylfi Sigurdsson before saying "You see all those, Lewis? Well they're all midfielders. And they are ahead of you in the queue."


1) Lucas Leiva

Lucas is not a bad player by any means, but no Premier League player last season suffered from such a loss of importance to his side than the Brazilian. It was as if Liverpool's new all-attacking outlook left little place for Lucas, particularly with Steven Gerrard moving into a deeper role.

Lucas was dropped from the Brazil squad for the World Cup, and with the arrival of Emre Can and Adam Lallana (alongside the continued presence of Gerrard, Jordan Henderson and Joe Allen) making his first-team inclusion even more unlikely, now may be time to move on. It seems surprising that he is still just 27.

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