Football Manager 2020: All the best Contract Expiry signings in 2020 (first season) – Silva, Modric, Eriksen & more

On a tight budget? Pick these world class players up for free at the end of the campaign.

Alastair Pusinelli by Alastair Pusinelli

With Football Manager budgets more realistic than other games – taking into account the summer’s transfer activity, you need to be savvy.

One thing you can do is it look at Contract Expiry signings. These are players who’s contracts run out at the end of the season.

You can approach these players in the final six months of their contract (from January 1st), and agree a deal that will see them join on a free at the beginning of next season.

Only players aged 23 or above an be approached for a pre-contract agreement.

Here are the best players you can sign at the end of the first season in Football Manager 2020.



David Silva (CA 175 – PA 179)

Age: 33

Position: M (C), AM (C)

Club: Manchester City

Country: Spain

Best Attributes: 19 technique, 19 first touch, 18 dribbling

Value: £24 million

Wage: £160,000 a week

David Silva – a World Cup winner, two-time EURO winner, four-time Premier League champion and nine domestic trophies to his name. He has announced he will be leaving City at the end of the campaign, so he should be your number one target, even aged 33.

With stats of 19 technique, 19 first touch and 18 dribbling, Silva offers plenty He still holds a CA of 175, just four off his 179 potential. Expect his £160,000 a week wages to come down too.

Luka Modric (CA 173 – PA 180)

Age: 33

Position: M (C)

Club: Real Madrid

Country: Croatia

Best Attributes: 19 first touch, 18 technique, 18 decisions

Value: £18 million

Wage: £400,000 a week

The reigning Ballon d’Or champion, but it hasn’t been an easy time since for Luka Modric. The Croatian has failed to stick to the heights that saw him win three Champions League titles in a row and take his country to the World Cup final. He may be 33 but can still do a job for a quality outfit.

READ MORE: Sports Interactive’s best clubs to manage on Football Manager 2020

Modric’s CA has dropped to 173, but still holds strong stats of 19 first touch, 18 technique and 18 decisions. His £400,000 a week wages should be halved at least, so don’t be put off.

Sergio Ramos (CA 172 – PA 174)

Age: 33

Position (s): D (C)

Club: Real Madrid

Country: Spain

Best Attributes: 20 heading, 20 determination, 19 leadership

Value: £24 million

Wage: £475,000 a week

Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos has been one of the world’s best defenders for over a decade. Heading into the twilight of his career, bringing in the Spanish captain would not be a long-term acquisition, but could be a key member of the dressing room.

On FM20, Ramos has stats of 20 heading, 20 determination and 19 leadership, giving Ramos a 172 CA – just two off his 174 potential. He does have astronomic wages, but at his age, you should be able to bring these down closer to £300,000 a week.


Giorgio Chiellini (CA 170 – PA 174)

Age: 33

Position (s): D (C)

Club: Zebre (Juventus)

Country: Italy

Best Attributes: 20 bravery, 19 long throws, 19 tackling

Value: £5.75 million

Wage: £105,000 a week

A mainstay at the heart of his club and country’s defence for over a decade, Giorgio Chiellini is a legend of the game. A World Cup winner in 2006, Chiellini also boasts eight Serie A titles in a decorated career, but his time could be running out at Juventus following the signings of Matthijs de Ligt couple with a nasty injury this season.

READ MORE: All the best Wonderkid Left Midfielders (ML) and Wingers (AML) to sign on FIFA 20 Career Mode

Chiellini’s CA 170 is just short of a 174 potential, with his best stats being 20 bravery, 19 long throws and 19 tackling. His wages of £105,000 a week are just reasonable enough for you to make a move.

Christian Eriksen (CA 168 – PA 178)

Age: 27

Position: M (C), AM (C)

Club: Tottenham

Country: Denmark

Best Attributes: 17 natural fitness, 17 stamina, 17 long shots

Value: £67 million

Wage: £75,000 a week

Christian Eriksen is in limbo at Tottenham – Too good a player to leave out, but with him keen on a move away, it will be an interesting situation for Jose Mourinho to handle. Still only 27, the Dane is in the top 20 of all-time Premier League assist makers with 19.

On FM20, 17 natural fitness, 17 stamina and 17 long shots take his CA to 168, which can still lean back towards a potential of 178. One of the more likely players to move, giving is relatively low wage at Spurs of £75,000 a week.

Fernandinho (CA 165 – PA 165)

Age: 34

Position (s): DM, M (C)

Club: Manchester City

Country: Brazil

Best Attributes: 18 concentration, 18 work rate, 17 decisions

Value: £11.25 million

Wage: £180,000 a week

Fernandinho was central to Manchester City’s success last season, and without him they would have lost the title. A long-term replacement has finally been found for the aging Brazilian in to form of Rodri, but an injury crisis as seen the Brazilian fill in at centre back this year.

READ MORE: All the best Wonderkid Goalkeepers (GK) to sign on Football Manager 2020

Stats of 18 concentration, 18 work rate and 17 decisions take his CA to a maximum 165. He may be 34, but could be a reliable player for any top half club for one more season.

Edinson Cavani (CA 164 – PA 174)

Age: 32

Position (s): ST

Club: PSG

Country: Uruguay

Best Attributes: 18 heading, 18 bravery, 18 stamina

Value: £31 million

Wage: £300,000 a week

Edinson Cavani has had a career any striker would dream of. With over 345 club career goals and 50 international goals he has been a force of nature in front of goal. Having won his fifth French league trophy and with the young Kylian Mbappe hot on his heels, he could well be ready for a move at the season’s end.

Aged 32, there is just enough time to bring in the clinical Uruguayan with his stats of 18 heading, 18 bravery and 18 stamina. His 164 CA has fallen from a 174 PA.

Thiago Silva (CA 163 – PA 174)

Age: 34

Position (s): D (C)

Club: PSG

Country: Brazil

Best Attributes: 17 heading, 17 marking, 17 concentration

Value: £5 million

Wage: £230,000 a week

The PSG captain, but with a plethora of defensive options in Paris, it looks likely Thiago Silva will leave this summer. Marquinhos looks to have usurped him as the lynchpin of the defence, with youngsters Presnel Kimpembe, Thilo Kehrer and new signing Abdou Diallo needing more minutes.

READ MORE: All the best Wonderkid Strikers (ST) to sign on Football Manager 2020

17 heading, 17 marking and 17 concentration takes Silva’s CA to 163, falling from his 174 potential. You may just be able to get one more season out of the 34-year-old.

Dries Mertens (CA 158 – PA 166)

Age: 32

Position (s): ST

Club: Napoli

Country: Belgium

Best Attributes: 18 off the ball, 17 finishing, 17 agility

Value: £22.5 million

Wage: £125,000 a week

At 32 years old, Dries Mertens should be heading towards the latter stages of his career. However, he is showing no signs of slowing down – and is braced to become Napoli’s all-time record goalscorer. Given how strong Napoli are under Carlo Ancelotti, you would be surprised to see him leave.

18 off the ball, 17 finishing and 17 agility leave Mertens with a 158 CA, eight off his 166 potential. Many clubs will be sniffing around to sign him, so his £125,000 a week wages are likely to hold.

Jose Callejon (CA 158 – PA 162)

Age: 32

Position (s): M (R), AM (R)

Club: Napoli

Country: Belgium

Best Attributes: 16 natural fitness, 16 acceleration, 16 first touch

Value: £20.5 million

Wage: £92,000 a week

An under-appreciated player, Jose Callejon is a tricky winger. The 32-year-old may have lost some pace, but with 79 goals and 74 assists at Napoli he still offers plenty. With competition from Dries Mertens, Lorenzo Insigne and new signing Hirving Lozano – an end of season switch looks to be on the cards for the Spaniard.

READ MORE: All the best midfielders (DM, MC, AMC) to sign on Football Manager 2020

The right winger or midfielder has stats of 16 natural fitness, 16 acceleration and 16 first touch. At 32, his wages of £92,000 a week should decrease beneath £80,000.

All the best 2020 Contract Expiry signings on FM20

David Silva33AM (C)
M (C)
Man CitySpain175179£24m£160k
Luka Modric33M (C)R. MadridCroatia173180£18m£388k
Sergio Ramos33D (C)R. MadridSpain172174£24m£463k
Giorgio Chiellini34D (C)ZebreItaly170174£6m£107k
Christian Eriksen27AM (LC)
M (C)
M (C)
Man CityBrazil165165£11m£180k
Edinson Cavani32STPSGUruguay164174£31m£297k
Thiago Silva34D (C)PSGBrazil163174£5m£230k
Dries Mertens32AM (LRC)
José Callejón32AM (R)
M (R)
Gianluigi Buffon41GKZebreItaly157187£3m£38k
James Rodríguez27AM (LC)
M (LC)
R. MadridColombia157172£47m£215k
Jan Vertonghen32D (C)SpursBelgium157165£27m£86k
Pedro31AM (LRC)ChelseaSpain156164£31m£95k
Juan Cuadrado31D (R)
WB (R) AM (R)
M (R)
Toby Alderweireld30D (C)SpursBelgium154170£36m£50k
Blaise Matuidi32DM
M (LC)
James Milner33WB (RL)
Stefan Savic28D (C)A. MadridMontenegro153158£34m£74k
Willian30AM (LRC)
M (C)
Éver Banega30AM (C)
M (C)
Aleksandar Kolarov33D (L)
WB (L)
Nacho29D (RLC)R. MadridSpain150158£22m£142k
Olivier Giroud32STChelseaFrance150156£14m£110k
João Moutinho32AM (C)
M (C)
Charles Aránguiz30DM
M (C)
Bayer 04Chile150150£21m£107k

READ MORE: All the best midfielders (DM, MC, AMC) to sign on Football Manager 2020

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