Every Championship club’s best released player this summer

Ben Stewart

The transfer window is now in full swing and Championship clubs in particular will be in search of a bargain this summer; we’ve compiled a list of the best players each Championship club has released.


Barnsley: Alex Mowatt
Technically speaking, Barnsley haven’t ‘released’ anyone this summer but captain Mowatt is out of contract and has no appetite to sign a new deal, so will certainly be missed at Oakwell.

At the moment it looks as if a reunion with former manager Valérien Ismaël could be on the cards as the midfielder has been heavily linked with a move to West Brom.


Birmingham: Dan Crowley
Despite a promising start to life at St. Andrew’s, things never really clicked for Crowley at Birmingham with the midfielder spending the second half of last season on loan at Hull City in League One. 

He made a £700,000 move from Willem II in the summer of 2019 and finds himself a free agent just two years later.


Blackburn: Lewis Holtby
The German midfielder certainly had his moments while he was at Ewood Park and his ability to provide defence-splitting passes will be missed.

But after several injury setbacks a decision was taken not to offer him a new deal, with Holtby now likely to move back to Germany.


Blackpool: Sully Kaikai
One of the more surprising releases this summer came from the Seasiders saying goodbye to Kaikai, with the winger providing 15 goal involvements in League One last season.

He was edged out of the side towards the end of the season but you’d imagine he won’t be short of offers this summer.


Bournemouth: Jack Wilshere
Wilshere’s masterclass against Barcelona as a teenager for Arsenal seems like a lifetime ago now with the 29-year-old once again finding himself a free agent.

He had a mixed season with Bournemouth, with one of his most notable moments being his sending-off against Watford.


Bristol City: Famara Diedhiou
There’s already been quite the clear-out at Ashton Gate but one of the most notable departures will be striker Diedhiou.

After arriving in June 2017 for a club record fee of £5.3 million, the striker went on to score 46 goals in 154 appearances.


Cardiff City: Sol Bamba
After the year that Bamba’s had, it’s a shame that the Cardiff fans won’t be able to give him the send-off he deserves.

In May 2021 he announced that he was cancer-free and is looking to carry on with his footballing career.


Coventry: Maxime Biamou
Biamou has been with Coventry throughout their rise through the EFL with the striker scoring goals in League Two, League One and the Championship.

After making over 100 appearances for Coventry, last season was his final one with the club.


Derby: Scott Malone
Things never quite worked out for Scott Malone at Derby after moving over from Huddersfield in 2018.

He spent last season out on loan at Millwall and he’s since joined them on a permanent basis after his contract was up with Derby this summer.


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Fulham: Kevin McDonald
McDonald played a key role in each of Fulham’s last two promotions to the Premier League and was one of the most experienced players in that dressing-room.

Unfortunately, the midfielder missed last season due to having a kidney transplant and was kept out of action due to illness.


Huddersfield: Christopher Schindler
A modern-day legend in every sense of the word, Schindler scored the decisive penalty in the play-off final shootout as well as captaining the side in the Premier League.

He has since gone on to sign for FC Nürnberg in Germany’s second division, but he will never be loved like this again.


Hull City: Reece Burke
Burke joined Hull for a fee of around £1.5million in the summer of 2018 from West Ham and went on to make over 100 appearances for the club.

He has since signed for Luton Town.


Luton Town: James Collins
He’s been the Hatters’ talisman over the past five seasons and has consistently scored goals for Luton throughout their rise through the EFL, scoring 68 goals in 174 appearances.

After his contract expired with Luton this summer, he has signed for Cardiff City on a free transfer.


Middlesbrough: Ashley Fletcher
Despite showing flashes of quality – his outrageous goal from the halfway line against West Brom being one of them – Fletcher never really lived up to the hype at Middlesbrough.

He missed the majority of the 20/21 season due to injury and has since inexplicably signed for Watford on a free transfer.


Millwall: Shaun Williams
Williams made over 250 appearances for Millwall and has been a mainstay in the side since their promotion back up to the Championship in 2018.

The 34-year-old midfielder has since signed for Portsmouth in League One.


Nottingham Forest: Samba Sow
It’s a shame Sow was never really able to stay injury-free because in his first season with the club he was immense and a brilliant anchor for Forest in the middle of the park.

But after the midfielder missed the majority of last season due to injury, a decision was taken to not offer him a new deal at the City Ground.


Peterborough United: Louis Reed
The 23-year-old midfielder was in and out of the side last season and now finds himself as a free agent.

After joining from Sheffield United in the summer of 2018, Reed went onto make 70 appearances for Peterborough.


Preston North End: Billy Bodin
Bodin clearly had skill and the technical ability to be a good Championship player but his time at Deepdale was constantly interrupted by injuries.

The winger only made one start for North End in the 20/21 season and is now in search of a new club.


QPR: Paul Smyth
After joining QPR in 2017 from Linfield, Smyth’s opportunities to impress were fairly few and far between with the majority of his appearances coming on off the bench,

He was loaned out four times throughout his QPR career and has since signed for Leyton Orient on a permanent basis.


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Reading : Sone Aluko
It seems crazy looking back on it now that Reading spent £7.5 million on Aluko back in 2017.

The winger’s time at Reading has been less than impressive and apart from a few flashes here and there, they got a pretty poor return on their investment.


Sheffield United: John Lundstram
Lundstram was a pivotal cog in the Sheffield United side that finished ninth in the Premier League in the 19/20 season, scoring five goals from midfield.

He then made it clear that he saw his future elsewhere – leading to him being dropped at various junctures of their disastrous second season.


Stoke City: Jordan Cousins
Although he was never really considered to be a first-team regular at Stoke, Cousins always went about his business well and put a shift in when he was needed.

After being let go by Stoke this summer, he has since signed for Wigan in League One.


Swansea: Andre Ayew
From everyone on this list, Swansea will probably find it the toughest to replace their talisman Andre Ayew.

A player with Premier League quality who popped up in so many vital moments for Swansea, he will be dearly missed by the Swans heading into next season.


West Brom: Hal Robson-Kanu
Often seen as the back-up striker, Robson-Kanu certainly had his moments for the Baggies, scoring 21 goals across his five seasons for the club.

Despite some of the more glamorous options they had at the time, Robson-Kanu was the preferred choice of Slaven Bilic up front in their last promotion to the Premier League.

And he’ll always have this…