Five Premier League players with a big year ahead
The 2020/21 Premier League is here. It has been a funny old summer window with only six weeks between the season finale and the start of the new campaign. Even so, fans are gagging for football’s return. The Football Index market is no different, especially with the new and improved dividend structure coming into play. Whilst the likes of Bruno Fernandes, Harry Kane and Kevin De Bruyne are expected to be amongst the best players again there are several players with a big year ahead. Here we look at five players who need to produce the goods. Whether they will or not, you decide.
Number 5. Moise Kean, £1.49
When Moise Kean rocked up on the blue half of Merseyside last season the Evertonian’s were branding the move a coup. They’d just landed a striker who had found the net every 153 minutes in Serie A after all. The move hasn’t worked out at all though with the former Juventus man finding the net just twice in over 1,000 minutes of action. Now Kean is one of a few players with a big year ahead. The 20-year-old is hardly heading for the scrapheap just yet though. Carlo Ancelotti is eager to keep Kean with the club having apparently rebuffed advances from his former club during this window.
Everton have strengthened their midfield significantly during the off season and when Kean plays, he’ll expect to have better service. Don’t be surprised to see him find the net more than twice in the year ahead. If he doesn’t then his £25m transfer fee from the summer of 2019 will begin to look a tad sickening.
Number 4. Tanguy N’Dombele, £1.30
Tottenham’s record signing disappointed last season. Fact. That doesn’t mean he should be written off though. The midfielder is just 23-years-old and was adapting to a new league in a team that was going through changes after a tough spell. The former Lyon man has been linked with a Spurs exit all summer long but those closely associated to the goings on at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium have been adamant that he’s not going anywhere. If he stays, it’s almost guaranteed that Jose Mourinho will offer him another chance to impress given their hectic schedule.
His talent is undeniable and in his last season in France he was the driving force of his team. He managed three attempted dribbles per 90 and a mightily impressive 89.1% pass success rate. If he has a strong season with Spurs then it’s happy days for everyone concerned. If he doesn’t then the chances are that he moves on next summer. That won’t be the end of him though as there will be a queue of teams waiting to take him.
Number 3. Tammy Abraham, £1.64
Frank Lampard put a lot of faith in Abraham at the start of last season. Abraham had only ever really delivered the goal scoring goods in the Championship. ‘Lamps’ was duly repaid though with Abraham bagging 12 goals before the turn of the year. That form saw his FI price peak at £3.71. He’s now priced at a lowly £1.70 – although that does include a 50p drop off the back of the order books update. The reason for his drop is mainly that he failed to maintain his performances adding just a further three Premier League goals to his name in 2020.
Given the transfer window Chelsea have had it’s fair to say one of two things will happen. Either Abraham struggles for game time or he gets the nod to play. If it’s the former, his career might arrive at a crossroads where he has to consider a step down from the very elite clubs. The latter, however, will likely see him with a host of chances landing at his feet. If he can take them, he could quite easily hit 20 league goals. If he doesn’t then his place at Chelsea and with England may come under threat.
Number 2. Nicolas Pepe, £2.40
We’ve already touched on one big money signing that arrived in North London and now we look at another. This time it’s Arsenal man Nicolas Pepe. Expectation clearly weighed on Pepe’s shoulders in the early part of last season but he impressed after Mikel Arteta arrived. The Ivory Coast international will have a big role to play under the former Gunners captain again this season.
Unai Emery was relieved of his duties in late November. At that time, Pepe had just one goal and two assists to his name in the league. By game 38, his total tally stood at five goals and six assists. On top of that he weighed in with a further three goal contributions as Arsenal won the FA cup and another four in a fairly forgettable Europa League campaign. On the PB front, he scooped two top forward and one star man awards in the post-Emery era. His displays have started to cause a ripple of excitement again with a little hope returning that he’ll fulfil his obvious potential.
Number 1. James Rodriguez, £1.82
Everton’s new man, James Rodriguez, might be new to the Premier League but he’s still one of the players with a big year ahead. Why? Ultimately, if he fails to produce on a regular basis at Goodison then it could be the 29-year-old finished in the top five leagues. That sounds incredibly harsh given his trophy haul and obvious quality but it’s also true. Rodriguez was largely unknown outside of France, where he played for Monaco, prior to the 2014 World Cup. By the end of that tournament every football fan in the world knew his name. Yes, he top scored in the tournament but, more than that, his all-round performances for Colombia were very strong as the South American outfit reached the quarter-finals.
A move to Real Madrid followed. It was meant to be the next step but he never held down a regular starting spot at the Bernabeu with a two year loan spell at Bayern Munich also proving frustrating as he battled niggling injuries. That said, he still managed one standout year in Germany. He was named in the Bundesliga team of the season in 2018 after chipping in with seven goals and 11 assists in 23 appearances. That was in spite of a combination of back, calf and hamstring issues too. If the Toffees’ boss plays to Rodriguez’s strengths and he stays fit then he has the potential to be the signing of the summer.
There you have it, five Premier League players with a big year ahead. Will you be investing in any of them?