Football Manager 2019 is out now - in beta form, at least - and that means virtual bosses can get started on a brand new managerial project.
While the game's engineers have been meticulously delving into the minutiae of football management to make it a much more immersive experience, the simple mechanics of transfers can be the most enjoyable part.
Indeed, when dipping into the transfer market in search of reinforcements, finding a bargain or, better yet, a top class free agent is one of the most satisfying aspects of the game.
At the beginning of the latest edition of the Sports Interactive management simulation, a host of quality players can be acquired without forking over a transfer fee, which makes them particularly attractive targets for cash-strapped clubs.
Generally speaking, the players who tend to be without a contract are those at the end of their careers, but occasionally you will find a star who is still in his prime.
Lots of factors come into play when attempting to lure a free agent to your club, such as wage demands and club reputation, so it must be noted that they won't all be easily snapped up.
To help you get started on your new managerial odyssey, Goal takes a look at some of the best free agents to sign in Football Manager 2019.
Football Manager 2019 free agent goalkeepers
The standard of free agent goalkeepers available at the beginning of the new game is not really sufficient if you are managing at the highest level, but a number of players could fit in at Championship level or lower.
Age can be a concern for players in outfield positions, but it is common to see goalkeepers ply their trade well into their late 30s and sometimes their 40s.
Other top-level international goalkeepers who can be signed for nothing are 31-year-old Oscar Ustari, who has represented Argentina, and former Lille shotstopper Vincent Enyeama.
Football Manager 2019 free agent defenders
There is an interesting array of talent available on free transfer when it comes to defenders and, while the age profile tends towards the older end of the spectrum, there are a few who players who are in their 20s.
If you'd like to get a true veteran into your ranks you could always try your hand at persuading former Inter and Argentina centre-back Nicolas Burdisso to join your project, or perhaps former Manchester United star Patrice Evra. Both players are approaching 40, so their physicality has decreased considerably, but their intelligence and skill set remains strong.
|Chris Baird||36||Northern Ireland||DRC/DM|
You can sign Pogba for free too - Florentin, that is. The former Saint-Etienne man may not be at the same level as his World Cup-winning brother Paul, but he could certainly do a job at a lower level.
The likes of Joleon Lescott, Chris Baird, Robert Huth and James Collins may not be household names, but they all have years of Premier League experience under their belts, which is valuable.
Football Manager 2019 free agent midfielders
Perhaps all the France international needs is the right manager to resurrect his fortunes and, who knows, maybe he will have one final flourish before his career comes to an end - that could be you.
Another fascinating name on the list of free agent midfielders in Football Manager 2019 is Portugal international Miguel Veloso, who counts Sporting Lisbon, Dynamo Kiev and Genoa among his former clubs.
The defensive midfielder has appeared at two World Cups and two European Championships and, given his age, could probably still be relied upon to do a job for a top level club.
Fans of Arsenal might be tempted to bring old team-mates together, with the likes of Mathieu Flamini, Denilson and Abou Diaby joining Nasri among the former Gunners who are out of contract in the game.
Other blasts from the past include former Chelsea enforcer Michael Essien and ex-France international Jeremy Toulalan.
Football Manager 2019 free agent strikers
If you're looking for a bit of experience up front and can't afford (or don't want) to pay, Football Manager 2019 has a number of nostalgia-evoking options.
Former Manchester United and Tottenham hero Dimitar Berbatov is available on a free and, amazingly, he still has rating of 20 for his first touch.
Despite his advancing years, Berbatov's finishing, technique and penalty-taking attributes are all still quite strong, so he could certainly do a job for a season at least.
|Robbie Keane||37||Republic of Ireland||ST|
|Kenwyne Jones||33||Trindidad & Tobago||ST|
Spurs fans will be delighted to learn that a potential reunion with Robbie Keane is actually possible too, with the Republic of Ireland's record goalscorer also out of contract following his stint in India with ATK.
Other free agent strikers include Giuseppe Rossi, but a thorough scouting may be preferable before making a move for the injury-plagued Italian.