Cristiano Ronaldo and Kylian Mbappe, three Barcelona players and Paul Pogba among best XI of players out of contract and available on a free transfer in 2022

Preparations for the new season have already begun with the transfer window in full flow and the opening day fast approaching.

But football clubs will be looking much further ahead than simply their business summer, but through to January and beyond.

Ronaldo joined Juventus in the summer of 2018 and has won five trophies in his time there, but has a year on his deal left
Getty

There are a number of high-profile names whose contracts are running dangerously close to expiry and here, talkSPORT.com looks at the best of them.

Andre Onana (GK)

Arsenal are understood to have identified the Ajax goalkeeper as a long-term replacement for Bernd Leno.

The Ajax and Cameroon goalkeeper’s ban for a doping violation was reduced to nine months by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in June.

While Onana will not be allowed to play domestically or internationally until November 4, he can resume training two months before the end of the suspension, on September 4.

It remains to be seen whether the Gunners will indeed push for a move this summer or wait for the prospect of a free transfer in the summer of 2022.

The Ajax goalkeeper has admirers from the Premier League
Getty Images – Getty

Daniel Carvajal (RB)

The Real Madrid defender looked poised to sign a new contract last year but that failed to come to fruition.

So what does the future hold for the 29-year-old? Carvajal remains one of the most formidable players in his position so if he does leave the Bernabeu his next club will be very fortunate indeed.

Carvajal has been with Real Madrid for 18 years of his life
Getty

Emerson Palmieri (LB)

He hardly featured for the Blues last season, but Emerson’s stock remains high in Italy after he helped Roberto Mancini’s Azzurri side win Euro 2020.

Roma have been linked with the 26-year-old, who joined the Blues for an initial £17.6million in 2018.

Not a bad free agent sweep, whatsoever.

Emerson’s future very much remains up in the air
Getty Images

John Stones (CB)

The 2020/21 campaign couldn’t have gone much better for Stones, who starred on a domestic and international level.

Recent reports have indicated he is set to pen a three-year contract at Manchester City, but until that’s confirmed then expect the unexpected in football.

Stones overcame a difficult period in his career to cap a remarkable turnaround of events for both City and England.

Any top club in Europe certainly wouldn’t pass up the opportunity of signing Stones.

Stones has rebuilt his career at Man City and England
Getty Images

Andreas Christensen (CB)

Chelsea are said to keen to extend the Dane’s contract this summer, but nothing has been signed, sealed or delivered yet.

The 25-year-old impressed in a back three towards the end of last season, with Thiago Silva sidelined.

Christensen has struggled for consistency during his nine-year spell at Chelsea
GETTY IMAGES

Pedri (CM)

Barcelona have an option to extend the 18-year-old midfielder’s contract by two more years.

However, they seem poised to offer him a new and improved deal with the likes of Liverpool watching on in admiration.

Pedri is set to star for Spain at the Tokyo Olympics
Getty

Paul Pogba (CM)

The enigmatic playmaker is undoubtedly one of the best midfielders in football, but he certainly divides the Manchester United fan base.

Pogba’s agent, Mino Raiola, hasn’t been afraid of voicing his opinion on anything and everything regarding the Frenchman’s future.

So will he stay or will he go? United would be foolish to let a player of Pogba’s calibre leave the club (again).

Pogba re-joined Man United in 2016 for £89m
AFP

Ousmane Dembele (RW)

Negotiations regarding a new contract for Dembele have dragged on for months.

There is understood to have been a general feeling around the Camp Nou that the 24-year-old is not particularly keen on remaining at the club.

Dembele was seen as France’s brightest young talents but injury has hindered his progress
Getty

Ansu Fati (LW)

Like with the aforementioned Pedri, Barcelona have an option to extend Fati’s contract for a further two years.

It’s understood that the Catalan giants and Fati’s agent are negotiating a new five-year deal, however.

It’s been turbulent at Barca lately but it looks like they’re building another great team and they’ll want Fati at the heart of it
GETTY IMAGES

Kylian Mbappe (CF)

The man every team in world football would want to sign if they had the opportunity.

He incredibly has 132 goals and 49 assists for Paris Saint-Germain in just 125 outings across all competitions.

Sadly not every team has millions upon millions at their disposal to splash out for a once in a lifetime talent like Mbappe.

PSG remain poised to offer him a ‘mammoth’ new contract to keep him at the Parc des Princes.

But imagine if he became available on a free? Every man and his dog will be after him!

Could Mbappe link up with Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool?

Cristiano Ronaldo (CF)

Even at the age of 36, the legendary Portuguese star remains highly coveted from teams all over the world.

Incredibly Ronaldo was the top scorer in Serie A last season with 29 goals in 33 games.

Juventus insist they’ve heard nothing from his camp to suggest he wants to leave, but will the former Real Madrid and Manchester United star want one final hurrah?

Ronaldo shows no signs of slowing up either
Getty