From shrewd, tactical acquisitions to high-wage flops, the world of Premier League free signings can be very hit and miss. For every James Milner, there is an Owen Hargreaves lurking in the gloom, ready to bring everyone back down to earth.
The transfer window may now be well and truly bolted shut, but Premier League clubs are still able to furnish their squads with free agents. Here's a handy run through of a select few remaining freebies who could yet make a move to the top flight.
Hatem Ben Arfa
The former Newcastle man is still knocking around without a club this summer after being released by Ligue 1 side Rennes at the end of last season.
Ben Arfa enjoyed four years as a fan favourite at St James's Park before a slightly nomadic past few seasons, taking in spells at Hull City, Nice, Paris Saint-Germain and most recently Rennes.
He's still only 32 years old and the silky winger could still do a job for sides like Crystal Palace and Aston Villa, who could benefit from his creativity and experience this season.
Spurs allowed their veteran backup forward to leave the club this summer – albeit with mild hopes of bringing the large striker back on a new, short-term deal if he doesn't secure a big-money contract elsewhere.
Llorente can still offer his services as a handy squad player and has been recently linked to Manchester United. While such a move would be unlikely (keep your eyes on Italian clubs) the fact that it's being mooted at all shows how highly he is regarded around the continent.
Premier League winning full-back Danny Simpson is available this summer after ending a successful five year association with Leicester City.
Simpson may not be the most glamorous name but, having played over 200 games in the top flight, he ticks a lot of boxes in terms of experience and good old fashioned Premier League know-how. The 32-year-old has been recently linked to Brighton and Crystal Palace.
Another former Newcastle man makes the list of freebies. Cabaye was once an integral part of the French national team and a frequent title winner in his homeland, but the 33-year-old has been without a club since he left UAE Pro-League side Al Nasr in January.
Signing the veteran could be a savvy bit of business for clubs looking to settle their midfield ranks with an experienced head – and he could certainly string a few passes for more attack-minded clubs likely to be in the dogfight like Norwich City and Brighton.
Another Spurs cast-off attracting attention this summer is Michel Vorm. The 35-year-old Netherlands international is strongly rumoured to be on Liverpool's radar, as they look to plug a hole in the team left by Alisson Becker's unfortunate calf injury.
Former West Ham goalkeeper Adrian has deputised during Liverpool's last three matches, but his kicking has been a problem. With Vorm's superior distribution and convenient availability as a free agent, the Reds may well be tempted to make a move for the Dutchman.
It is hard to believe that Lazar Markovic was once a £20m signing for Liverpool. The Serbian's career has certainly nose-dived since that heady summer in 2014 when he joined the Reds to some fanfare in the wake of Luis Suarez's departure.
The winger has shown flashes of quality, but never carved out a role for himself anywhere. Still just 25 years old, the Serbia international could be a wildcard option for a team looking to take a gamble on his underlying talent.
The Italian right-back is a free agent brimming with invaluable experience and quality. Abate made over 400 appearances in Italy, mostly with AC Milan. He also won 22 caps for the Italian national team, making the squads for Euro 2012 and the 2014 World Cup.
The 32-year-old has been linked with a switch to Everton and West Ham. While some may consider him a little long in the tooth for a Premier League debut, the veteran would be unlikely to let anyone down if given the nod this summer. Although...there's some Stephan Lichtsteiner potential, isn't there?
The Serbian endured an season from hell in 2018/19, injury ruling him out of the entirety of the campaign. The 26-year-old was subsequently released by Celta Vigo in May and has been looking for a new club ever since.
Another player linked to West Ham, the defensive midfielder is very talented – and if he can shake off the injuries, he could well be a decent addition to a side pushing to make the top ten this season.