This season it appears more than any other that there have been a good number of quality free agents left without a club. Michael Owen was one, now snapped up of course, Anthony Vanden Borre is another still searching for a club, and Thomas Hitzlsperger is a surprising name on the list.
The man nicknamed 'Der Hammer' has more than 50 caps for Germany and is still only 30. His lethal shot has proven him to be a matchwinner, an asset for any club.
So why is he currently on the scrapheap?
It is quite simple, his injury problems. He made just six appearances for Wolfsburg last season, most recently in March, and the decision to extend his one-year deal was not taken.
A year earlier he had been at West Ham, but despite signing in June he did not make his debut until February, and made just 13 appearances. The club were relegated and a clause in his contract allowed him to leave, which he did.
Of those 13 games he certainly impressed, playing a part in the Hammers' near-revival. He scored three goals, and provided six assists.
He signed from Lazio, where he again made 13 appearances, scoring once. It was earlier in his career where he really took off, building a name for himself at Aston Villa.
His four seasons in the Midlands mean he still speaks with a mixture of a Brummie and German accent, a truly bizarre sound to behold.
He left for his homeland in 2005, helping Stuttgart to win the Bundesliga in 2007, and went onto become club captain, but ended up leaving the side for Italy when a new manager came in with fresh ideas.
Everton are said to be looking for a midfielder after failing to sign Vadis Odjidja-Ofoe from Brugges, and Darron Gibson's thigh injury, potentially putting him out for six weeks does not help matters. Hitzlsperger's name has been touted as a solution.
Clearly there would be a concern with the midfielder about his fitness and injury, but with the transfer window closed, Everton hold the cards.
The German would surely love to play for a team in the top 10 of the Premier League, and could be persuaded to accept a pay-as-you-play deal.
He knows the Premier League well, and showed in his brief last spell he can still influence games. David Moyes is known for his bargain buys, and the German could be another.
Who knows if Everton keep him fit, they could have a player on their hands capable of fighting for a first team role for the next two-three years?
What do you think, should Everton go in for Hitzlsperger?
image: © stefanbaudy