Now that the Premier League season is over, it’s time for players to make a decision on where they will be playing their football next year. There are plenty of contracts expiring this year, and here are five former or current England players that could make the move to Major League Soccer this summer:
1. Rio Ferdinand
The Manchester United defender has not been offered a new contract at Old Trafford and will leave the club this summer. It was reported earlier in the year that Ferdinand was considering offers from MLS and he is now odds-on to make a move to the US to continue his playing career. The 35-year-old has previously been linked with Chicago Fire, though it is unclear where his preferred destination would be.
2. Ashley Cole
Ashley Cole’s future is still unclear, and after retiring from International football this week, he could be set to leave English football altogether. The left-back has had an excellent career and has already been linked with a move to MLS with the New York Red Bulls. With Chelsea not offering Cole a deal as of yet, a move to the US remains a real possibility for the 33-year-old.
3. Frank Lampard
Another Chelsea man yet to be offered a contract, and after John Terry got his deal yesterday, there are growing beliefs that Lampard will not get an extension this year. The midfielder wants to stay with Chelsea for another season, but it is thought that Mourinho is looking to add midfielders such as Paulinho to replace Lampard. A report this week claimed that LA Galaxy have offered the 36-year-old a two-year contract and a move to MLS looks to be on the cards.
4. Shaun Wright-Phillips
Another man who is out of contract at the end of this season, the winger is set to leave QPR and has already stated his desire to play in MLS before the end of his career. The 32-year-old is keen to link up with his brother, Bradley in New York, where he is the current top-scorer in MLS. Wright-Phillips follows MLS now and could join this summer. “Since he’s joined Red Bulls, that’s another team I have to follow closely and keep in close contact with. Brad’s not had the rub of the green with his career so I’m happy to see things working out for him in the States,” he said.
5. Joe Cole
Finally, we come to Joe Cole, who has had left West Ham United and is now looking for a new club. There have already been reports linking the 32-year-old midfielder to a MLS move and although he is keen to remain in England, a big-money offer from the US could tempt him into making the move.
All of these players are set to leave their respective clubs in England this summer, though Cole and Lampard could possibly be offered new deals. At least one name on the list is expected to join MLS in the coming months, but just how many will make the increasingly popular move stateside remains to be seen.