Desertion- a term in which the recipient of this treatment are left out in the wilderness, abandoned, with no where to turn.
Many of the beautiful games' latest casualties of being deemed surplus to requirements, who remain fee agents, at least till they can negotiate terms, are now victims of desertion.
A few names among the unwanted however, are surprisingly shocking. Players with a better than average reputation and much pedigree. Surely they're worth an offer?
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After-all, not many footballers can be let go by their respective teams and have fans scratch their heads as to why.
Well, here are the top five stars that are surprisingly not tied down by anyone and ready to snap up.
1. Ron Vlaar
The Dutchman has been without a club since leaving Villa Park at the end of last season.
After refusing to sign a contract extension, the 30-year-old centre back will surely be a huge priority target for a number of potential suitors after he recovers from an operation on his knee, which may not be until the New Year anyway.
This is because even though he was a regular at Villa Park's medical department last year, his performances for the Villains when available were regularly impressive. A real bargain.
2. Urby Emanuelson
Another Dutchman in this list, this time a former AC Milan starlet. The 29-year-old left back's form has dropped severely in recent years after failed spells at Roma and Atalanta.
However, with proven Premier League experience at Fulham, Emanuelson could be a fruitful catch for sides hoping to avoid relegation and add an experienced defender to their roster.
3. Georgios Samaras
After consistently impressing for Celtic and gaining Premier League pedigree at a very different Manchester City, the Greek hit-man has been without a club since being released by West Brom.
Still at the borderline age of 30, Samaras could potentially still have something to offer Premier League clubs attempting to avoid the drop. Surely 52 goals in 155 appearances for Celtic proves this?
4. Kevin Nolan
Perhaps the most controversial free agent in this list, the 33-year-old Englishman is currently training with League 2 side, Leyton Orient.
After being released by West Ham, despite making 32 Premier League appearances for them last season and being one of their most consistent talismen, the Scouse born central midfielder was left out in the dark.
Probably the biggest bargain on this list for Championship clubs and below, even at 33, his strength in the air and terrific hold up play should make him a top pick.
5. Emmanuel Eboue
Remember him? The 32-year-old right back, currently also in the football wilderness, has major top level Premier League experience with Arsenal having made 132 appearances for the North Londoners.
After being released from Galatasaray in the summer, Eboue's signature is free and ready to snap up. A real catch again, the Ivorian could provide excellent defensive depth.
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