Football Manager 2019: Contract expiry signings ending in 2019 (First Season)

A very popular move to make, but who can you snap up for free on a contract expiry signing on FM19?

Alastair Pusinelli by Alastair Pusinelli

The best things in life are free, right? The most shrewd of signings on Football Manager 2019 are contract expiry signings. These are free transfers you can make once a player’s contract expires, but you can agree the terms for the deal as the player enters the final six months of his contract. I.e., in January 2019, you will be able to reach an agreement with a player who will join at the start of the following season in July 2019. Do note that a player must be at least 23 years of age on the 1st January to be available to sign, and of course in the final year of their contract. 

RealSport looks at the best players who can be picked up as a contract expiry signing. For a full list of all the players with a CA (Current Ability) rating of at least 147 on FM19, see the table near the end of this page. 

David De Gea (CA 180 – PA 183)

Age: 27

Positions: GK

Club: Manchester United

Country: Spain

Best stats: 20 reflexes, 18 agility, 18 handling

Wage: £200,000 a week

David De Gea is the best goalkeeper in the world for many, but the Spaniard isn’t getting the chance to show it with a leaky Manchester United defence in front of him. The 27-year-old has just two clean sheets this season, compared to the 18 he finished with last year. If things don’t improve quickly, DDG could be open to negotiating a move away this January.

Amazing stats of 20 reflexes, 18 agility and 18 handling give De Gea a 180 CA on Football Manager 2019, which can improve slightly to 183. His wages are hefty however, but the £200,000 a week will be worth it if you pick him up for free.

Gianluigi Buffon (CA 167 – PA 171)

Age: 40

Positions: GK

Club: Paris Saint-Germain

Country: Italy

Best stats: 20 positioning, 20 communication, 20 command of area

Wage: £145,000 a week

Another goalkeeper, Gianluigi Buffon joined PSG on a free at the beginning of this season, and if he doesn’t retire he could make a similar move next summer. A legend of the game and perhaps the greatest goalkeeper we have ever seen, Buffon won nine Serie A titles with former club Juventus, and was a vital component of Italy’s 2006 World Cup winning side.

20 positioning, 20 communication and 20 command of area are perfect stats for the goalkeeper which help him to an impressive 167 CA at the age of 40. That is only just shy of Buffon’s 171 potential, and he may be worth a punt on his £145,000 a week wages if his level doesn’t drop this year.

Jan Vertonghen (CA 165 – PA 165)

Age: 31

Positions: D (C)

Club: Tottenham

Country: Belgium

Best stats: 17 tackling, 16 heading, 16 marking

Wage: £90,000 a week

Jan Vertonghen made the Premier League team of the season last year, but at 31 he still has very little silverware to his name for a player of his calibre. The last time he lifted a trophy, it was his second Eredivisie title with Ajax back in 2012, but he did earn a bronze medal at the World Cup with Belgium this past summer. 

Centre back Vertonghen has a 165 CA which is at its peak. Stats of 17 tackling, 16 heading and 16 marking can be yours, with kind wages of £90,000 a week. 

Vincent Kompany (CA 163 – PA 168)

Age: 32

Positions: D (C)

Club: Manchester City

Country: Belgium

Best stats: 19 leadership, 17 bravery, 17 strength

Wage: £150,000 a week 

Vincent Kompany is still Manchester City’s captain, but age and injuries are catching up with him. The new-look, young defensive partnership of John Stones and Aymeric Laporte looks to be Pep Guardiola’s preferred centre half pairing, leaving question marks over City legend Kompany’s future.

Kompany has abilities of 19 leadership, 17 bravery and 17 strength on the game, taking his CA to 163 on FM 19. This is only five away from his potential of 168, which earns him wages of £150,000 a week. 

Toby Alderweireld (CA 160 – PA 170)

Age: 29

Positions: D (C)

Club: Tottenham

Country: Belgium

Best stats: 16 anticipation, 16 positioning, 16 tackling

Wage: £50,000 a week

A third Belgian central defender, and at 29, Toby Alderweireld is likely to be your premier choice in the position. He and Vertonghen have provided one of the most solid defensive pairings the Premier League has seen in over a decade, with the pair rekindling the partnership formed which won them league titles with Ajax.

Alderweireld looks the most likely to leave this summer having been dropped due to his contract issues last season. His wages are just £50,000 a week so you should jump at the chance to sign him, getting you his 160 CA and 170 potential. 16 anticipation, 16 positioning and 16 tackling are his best attributes. 

Daniel Alves (CA 159 – PA 164)

Age: 35

Positions: D (R), WB (R)

Club: Paris Saint-Germain

Country: Brazil

Best stats: 20 determination, 18 important matches, 18 natural fitness

Wage: £145,000 a week

Daniel Alves is expected to leave PSG at the end of the season, with the Brazilian saying it is ‘not possible’ for him to finish his career without playing in the Premier League. He will be 36 by that stage however, but with his experience and still impressive quality, you would imagine there will be various offers for the three-time Champions League winner.

20 determination, 18 important matches and 18 natural fitness take the veteran Alves to a 159 CA, which is perhaps generously only five away from his 164 potential. His £145,000 a week wages should come down so don’t be put off.

Cesc Fabregas (CA 156 – PA 174)

Age: 31

Positions: M (C), AM (C)

Club: Chelsea

Country: Spain

Best stats: 19 passing, 19 technique, 18 vision

Wage: £207,000 a week

Cesc Fabregas has also been linked with a move away, with AC Milan rumoured to be going in for the Spaniard this coming January. He still holds bags of technical ability, but Fabregas has had a long career, making his Arsenal debut at 17, and he doesn’t look cut out for the fast-paced nature of the Premier League any more.

World Cup winner Fabregas offers current club Chelsea abilities of 19 passing, 19 technique and 18 vision, providing him with a 156 CA on Football Manager 2019. This has fallen considerably from a 174 potential, so expect his £207,000 a week wages to be at least halved when you go to make a move. 

Arjen Robben (CA 156 – PA 180)

Age: 34

Positions: M (R), AM (R)

Club: Bayern Munich

Country: Holland

Best stats: 20 dribbling, 19 first touch, 18 consistency

Wage: £120,000 a week

Another man who has been around the game for a long period, it looks as if this could be Arjen Robben’s last campaign at Bayern Munich. The 34-year-old is now used in rotation with youngsters Kingsley Coman and Serge Gnabry, reducing him to just three goals and two assists in 14 games so far this term.

Right winger Robben still holds 20 dribbling, 19 first touch and 18 consistency on the game, take his CA to 156. Again, he has fallen a long way from a 180 potential, so expect those £120,000 a week wages to come down. 

Angel Di Maria (CA 156 – PA 161)

Age: 30

Positions: AM (RL)

Club: Paris Saint-Germain

Country: Argentina

Best stats: 17 agility, 17 first touch, 16 vision

Wage: £230,000 a week

Angel Di Maria has been shoehorned into a central midfield role at times for PSG, and with Neymar and Kylian Mbappe on the flanks as well as Julian Draxler a similar option, you expect something has to give. Di Maria is still a quality player, and with plenty of experience lifting league titles with Benfica, Real Madrid and Paris.

The Argentine has a 156 CA, which is within five of his 161 potential. Abilities of 17 agility, 17 first touch and 16 vision aren’t worth £230,000 a week wages, so get your bargaining hat on and strike a fairer deal for winger Di Maria.

Petr Cech (CA 155 – PA 182)

Age: 36

Position: GK

Club: Arsenal

Country: Czech Republic

Best stats: 18 jumping reach, 17 handling, 17 kicking

Wage: £110,000 a week

Petr Cech holds the most clean sheets in Premier League history, but you wonder how many more will be added to that after losing the number one spot at Arsenal this season. Aged 36, he still has a couple of years left in him as a goalkeeper, and would be a huge asset to any squad due to his experience and success of four Premier League titles, five FA Cups and Champions League crown. 

The Czech legend has abilities of 18 jumping reach, 17 handling and 17 kicking on the FM 19. Cech’s 155 CA has fallen from a 182 potential, which should enable you to knock down his £110,000 a week wages. 

All the best 2019 contract expiry signings on Football Manager 2019

Player A Pos Club Country CA PA W
David De Gea 27 GK Man United Spain 180 183 £200k
Gianluigi Buffon 40 GK PSG Italy 167 171 £145k
Jan Vertonghen 31 D (C) Spurs Belgium 165 165 £90k
Vincent Kompany 21 D (C) Man City Belgium 163 168 £150k
Toby Alderweireld 29 D (C) Spurs Belgium 160 170 £50k
Daniel Alves 35 D (R)
WB (R)
PSG Brazil 159 164 £145k
Arjen Robben 34 M (R)
AM (R)
Bayern Munich Holland 156 180 £120k
Angel Di Maria 30 AM (RL) PSG Argentina 156 161 £230k
Cesc Fabregas 31 M (C)
AM (C)
Chelsea Spain 156 174 £207k
Petr Cech 36 GK Arsenal Czech Rep. 155 182 £110k
Franck Ribery 35 M (L)
AM (L)
Bayern Munich France 154 178 £206k
Mousa Dembele 30 M (C) Spurs Belgium 154 155 £55k
Adrien Rabiot 23 M (C) PSG France 154 165 £52k
Anthony Martial 22 AM (L) Man United France 154 175 £110k
Filipe Luis 32 D (L) Atletico Madrid Brazil 153 160 £134k
Daniele De Rossi 34 DM Roma Italy 152 177 £96k
Raul Garcia 31 AM (C) Athletic Bilbao Spain 152 153 £100k
Ezequiel Lavezzi 33 AM (L) Huaxia Xingfu Argentina 152 165 £430k
Olivier Giroud 31 ST Chelsea France 152 156 £110k
Juan Mata 30 AM (C) Man United Spain 152 174 £160k
Ander Herrera 28 M (C) Man United Spain 151 156 £115k
Aritz Aduriz 37 ST Athletic Bilbao Spain 150 155 £28k
Pepe 35 D (C) Besiktas Portugal 150 165 £86k
Andrea Barzagli 37 D (C) Juventus Italy 150 167 £96k
Yacine Brahimi 28 AM (L) Porto (FCP) Algeria 150 156 £40k
Thomas Vermaelen 32 D (C) Barcelona Belgium 149 160 £130k
Alphonse Areola 25 GK PSG France 149 154 £31k
Aaron Ramsey 27 M (C) Arsenal Wales 149 161 £120k
Daniel Sturridge 28 ST Liverpool England 149 168 £130k
Marlos 30 AM (R) Shakhtar Donetsk Ukraine 149 150 £23k
Javier Mascherano 34 DM Huaxia Xingfu Argentina 138 169 £242k
Nacho Monreal 32 D (L) Arsenal Spain 148 148 £70k
Iker Muniain 25 AM (L) Athletic Bilbao Spain 147 152 £38k
Eliaquim Mangala 27 D (C) Man City France 147 150 £100k

A = Age
CA = Current Ability rating
PA = Potential Ability rating
W = Wage


Alastair Pusinelli

First console: GameBoy Color / Favourite Game: Assassin's Creed 2 / Currently playing: Football Manager 2020