In Career Mode, one of the best and most cost-effective ways of bringing in a new superstar has long been to make a contract expiry signing – or test your luck in the free agency.
In FIFA 22, the old ways aren’t quite as effective or prevalent, with the method and likelihood of making a contract expiry signing differing, as detailed on our 2022 Contract Expiry Signings page.
Here, we’re looking at the players whose contracts are set to expire in 2023, the second season of FIFA 22’s Career Mode, to see who you can target for a Bosman deal.
Lionel Messi, Paris Saint-Germain (RW, CF, ST)
All of the transfer talk leading up to this summer and for most of the closing weeks centred on Lionel Messi. As a free agent in the summer of 2021, he was willing to take a huge pay cut to stay with Barcelona, but so dire were the club’s finances that the league blocked the deal.
So, Messi moved on to one of the richest clubs in the world, Paris Saint-Germain. Signing a two-year deal to play up top alongside Kylian Mbappé and Neymar, the Argentine’s stay likely won’t go beyond 2023 – especially as he’s already 34-years-old.
At the time of writing, Messi has yet to make an impact in Paris – outside of giving a huge boost to merchandise sales – playing in three of the first nine games of the season without getting on the scoresheet. Still, his 38 goals and 14 assists during his final, disgruntled season at Camp Nou show that there’s more to come.
In Career Mode, Messi’s mighty overall rating of 93 doesn’t degrade too much over a couple of seasons, but given his wage demands and age, it’s possible for him to go unsigned up to the January of 2023. So, on the odd occassion, he could be a contract expiry signing in FIFA 22.
Robert Lewandowski, Bayern Munich (ST)
In a late twist to this summer’s transfer window, Robert Lewandowski announced that he wanted a new challenge elsewhere, but nothing materialised. It appears as though clubs were deterred by the £100 million price tag.
Still in Bavaria, Lewandowski is doing as he always has in the Bundesliga: score goals. Through the first eight games of the season alone, the Polish sharpshooter put away 11 goals – including two against Barcelona in the Champions League.
In FIFA 22, he enters as the game’s highest-rated striker at 92 overall. By the time 2023 rolls around in the game, he’ll be 34-years-old. So, there’s the off-chance that, if his overall rating declines by a fair few points, Lewandowski could become a prime contract expiry signing in Career Mode.
Jan Oblak, Atlético Madrid (GK)
Along with the highest-rated overall player and the highest-rated striker, FIFA 22’s highest-rated goalkeeper is also set to hit the open market in the summer of 2023. His efforts last season were pivotal in bringing the LaLiga crown to the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium, keeping 18 clean sheets and only allowing 25 goals to breach his coverage in 38 games.
At 28-years-old, Oblak can get even better – as noted in the game by his 93 potential rating – and has been wearing the captain’s armband this season. As would be assumed, the Slovenian is also his nation’s first-choice goalkeeper.
While his contract does expire in 2023, opening up the possibility of another team signing him on a Bosman deal or as a free agent that summer, he’s the kind of player that doesn’t usually go for free in FIFA 22. He’ll still be in his prime and likely with an even better overall rating, but you can always test your luck to try and lure in Oblak as a contract expiry signing.
Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United (LW, ST)
The 2021 summer window saw the consensus best two footballers in the world switch clubs, with Messi starting a new challenge in France and Cristiano Ronaldo returning to the club that made him a global superstar. Of course, this Manchester United team is very different to the one that he left in 2009.
Still, he’s back in the ultra-competitive Premier League following spells with dominant forces of Spain and Italy, but has still managed to be the difference-maker. His first five games yielded four goals, even if not all of the results went as he would have liked.
Being 36-years-old at the start of the game, with his contract expiring in 2023, Ronaldo looks to be a prime contract expiry signing candidate in FIFA 22. His overall will trickle down, perhaps to the mid-80s, which could see the Red Devils release the club legend. Even so, he’d make for a great signing for any club.
N’Golo Kanté, Chelsea (CDM, CM)
Widely accredited as being the best defensive midfielder in the world right now, and certainly among the best in the modern era, N’Golo Kanté continues to utilise his 5’6’’ frame and seemingly bottomless tank to guard the Chelsea backline and cut out opposition attacks.
Somewhat worryingly for the winner of the Premier League, Champions League, Europa League, FA Cup, UEFA Supercup, and World Cup, manager Thomas Tuchel habitually subbed Kanté out at half-time or the hour-mark throughout the early season.
FIFA 22 finally gave the diminutive Frenchman a worthy overall rating of 90, which should see him used more for the in-game Chelsea than in real life. So, don’t expect his key attributes in movement and mentality to dip much, and for the Blues to, more often than not, tie him down to a new deal before he can become a contract expiry signing.
Manuel Neuer, Bayern Munich (GK)
Already a legendary goalkeeper, boasting over 100 caps for his country, while still manning the crease for the perennial Bundesliga champions, Manuel Neuer is also still highly-rated in Career Mode. He’s 35-years-old now, but goalkeepers tend to boast more longevity than their outfield peers.
Only just behind Oblak in terms of overall rating, with Neuer’s at 90, the German’s goalkeeping ratings remain in the high-80s. Due to his age, the Gelsenkirchen-born goalie might just be allowed to slip towards the free agency in FIFA 22 if the in-game version demands excessive wages that don’t match his valuation.
Mohamed Salah, Liverpool (RW)
With 131 goals and 49 assists in 210 games to date, it seems like a given that Mohamed Salah will go down as one of Liverpool’s greatest players of the Premier League era. Now in his prime at 29-years-old, there may be more yet to come from the Egyptian in the remaining two years of his contract.
The crafty winger managed to score 31 goals in 51 games for the battered and beaten Reds last season. To help reassert the Anfield residents as title contenders again, Salah’s been going all-out to start the campaign, netting six goals in the first seven games.
In FIFA 22, Liverpool’s front line is still stacked, with Salah being the star of the show. His 89 overall rating is on-par with fellow 29-year-old Sadio Mané, as are his specialities, but Salah’s 91 finishing just edges the contest. If he manages to get to the contract expiry signing window, Salah would be a top target.
All of the best contract expiry signings in FIFA 22 (second season)
|Lionel Messi||34||93||93||Yes||RW, ST, CF||£67.1 million||£275,000||Paris Saint-Germain|
|Robert Lewandowski||32||92||92||Yes||ST||£102.8 million||£232,000||FC Bayern Munich|
|Jan Oblak||28||91||93||Yes||GK||£96.3 million||£112,000||Atlético de Madrid|
|Cristiano Ronaldo||36||91||91||Yes||ST, LW||£38.7 million||£232,000||Manchester United|
|N’Golo Kanté||30||90||90||Yes||CDM, CM||£86 million||£198,000||Chelsea|
|Manuel Neuer||35||90||90||Yes||GK||£11.6 million||£74,000||FC Bayern Munich|
|Mohamed Salah||29||89||89||Yes||RW||£86.9 million||£232,000||Liverpool|
|Sadio Mané||29||89||89||Yes||LW||£86.9 million||£232,000||Liverpool|
|Karim Benzema||33||89||89||Yes||CF, ST||£56.8 million||£301,000||Real Madrid CF|
|Raheem Sterling||26||88||89||Yes||LW, RW||£92.5 million||£249,000||Manchester City|
|Toni Kroos||31||88||88||Yes||CM||£64.5 million||£267,000||Real Madrid CF|
|Sergio Ramos||35||88||88||Yes||CB||£20.6 million||£99,000||Paris Saint-Germain|
|Thomas Müller||31||87||87||Yes||CAM, RM, RW||£56.8 million||£120,000||FC Bayern Munich|
|Sergio Agüero||33||87||87||Yes||ST||£43.9 million||£224,000||FC Barcelona|
|Milan Škriniar||26||86||88||Yes||CB||£63.6 million||£129,000||Inter|
|Kingsley Coman||25||86||87||Yes||LM, RM, LW||£69.7 million||£103,000||FC Bayern Munich|
|Jamie Vardy||34||86||86||Yes||ST||£28.4 million||£155,000||Leicester City|
|Riyad Mahrez||30||86||86||Yes||RW, RM||£56.3 million||£189,000||Manchester City|
|Kalidou Koulibaly||30||86||86||Yes||CB||£47.7 million||£90,000||Napoli|
|Sergio Busquets||32||86||86||Yes||CDM, CM||£38.7 million||£172,000||FC Barcelona|
|Giorgio Chiellini||36||86||86||Yes||CB||£10.3 million||£76,000||Juventus|
|Marcus Rashford||23||85||89||Yes||LM, ST||£66.7 million||£129,000||Manchester United|
|Lautaro Martínez||23||85||89||Yes||ST||£67.1 million||£125,000||Inter|
|Serge Gnabry||25||85||86||Yes||RM, LM, RW||£55.5 million||£95,000||FC Bayern Munich|
|Memphis Depay||27||85||86||Yes||CF, LW, CAM||£54.2 million||£189,000||FC Barcelona|
|Roberto Firmino||29||85||85||Yes||CF||£46.4 million||£159,000||Liverpool|
|Stefan de Vrij||29||85||85||Yes||CB||£38.7 million||£125,000||Inter|
|Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang||32||85||85||Yes||ST, LW, LM||£37.4 million||£125,000||Arsenal|
|Marco Reus||32||85||85||Yes||CAM, CF||£37 million||£82,000||Borussia Dortmund|
|İlkay Gündoğan||30||85||85||Yes||CM, CDM||£44.3 million||£159,000||Manchester City|
|Yann Sommer||32||85||85||Yes||GK||£22.8 million||£34,000||Borussia Mönchengladbach|
|Kasper Schmeichel||34||85||85||Yes||GK||£7.7 million||£99,000||Leicester City|
|Nabil Fekir||27||84||84||Yes||CAM, RM, ST||£38.7 million||£36,000||Real Betis Balompié|
|Youri Tielemans||24||84||87||Yes||CM, CDM||£49 million||£108,000||Leicester City|
|Ricardo Pereira||27||84||84||Yes||RB, RM||£34.8 million||£112,000||Leicester City|
|R. Guerreiro||27||84||84||Yes||LB, LM||£34.8 million||£68,000||Borussia Dortmund|
|Filip Kostić||28||84||84||Yes||LM, LWB||£36.6 million||£45,000||Eintracht Frankfurt|
|Luke Shaw||25||84||86||Yes||LB||£41.7 million||£120,000||Manchester United|
|Lucas Digne||27||84||84||Yes||LB||£34.8 million||£95,000||Everton|
|David De Gea||30||84||84||Yes||GK||£24.1 million||£103,000||Manchester United|
|Iago Aspas||33||84||84||Yes||ST, RW||£23.2 million||£40,000||RC Celta de Vigo|
|Houssem Aouar||23||81||86||Yes||CM, CAM||£33.1 million||£56,000||Olympique Lyonnaise|
|Dusan Vlahovic||21||78||85||Yes||ST||£24.9 million||£37,000||Fiorentina|
|Marcus Thuram||23||79||85||Yes||LM, ST||£23.7 million||£25,000||Borussia Mönchengladbach|
|Ryan Gravenberch||19||78||90||No||CM, CDM||£28.4 million||£9,000||Ajax|
|Renato Sanches||23||80||86||Yes||CM, RM||£28.4 million||£33,000||LOSC Lille|
|Rayan Cherki||18||73||88||No||RW, LW||£6 million||£8,000||Olympique Lyonnaise|
|Daichi Kamada||24||79||82||Yes||CAM, CF||£20.6 million||£25,000||Eintracht Frankfurt|
See if you can sign one of these elite talents as a contract expiry signing in FIFA 22, or even as a free agent if they look to test the open market in Career Mode.
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