The new Premier League season is touted to be one of the toughest and rightfully so – it has the few of the world’s best managers and players in it right now, but how have the new signings fared so far?
A lot of teams have had new signings and a lot gave way to a lot of speculation and hype during the transfer season, but how many of them actually live up to their expectations (and price tag), remains to be seen. Aside from players like Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic, a lot of the comparatively less-experienced new signings have actually made quite the impact already.
Here’s analysing five players who impressed the most:
1. Sadio Mane
Joining from Southampton, Mane debuted for Liverpool in their game against Arsenal and immediately proved that he was not to be underestimated at any cost. In fact, at one point, it almost appeared as if the Gunners were struggling to contain him.
He scored as well, and his marvellous goal helped the Reds beat Arsenal 4-1 at the Emirates stadium, and also lived up to his price tag of £30 million.
Liverpool have truly strengthened their attack this time around – with Firmino, Coutinho and now Sadio Mane, as well, their attack has the potential to cause damage even in the best of defences. One standing issue for them, however, is the left-back position as Alberto Moreno might not be the best option for them, based on his recent performances.
Meanwhile, Mane’s speed and accuracy adds a whole new element to Liverpool, and where he goes from this momentum is what everybody will be looking at now.
2. Nathan Redmond
Southampton wasted no time in filling the void left by Sadio Mane, and replaced him with Nathan Redmond. The young striker carved a spot in the hearts of the Saints’ fans right when he debuted, with a brilliant well-placed goal.
Redmond has a long, long way to go. He is just 22 and has all the qualities of an excellent striker. However, this is the point from where he can either go on to become greater, or remain average.
Often times, we have seen players with loaded talent, but without polishing that talent and without discipline and training, that could amount to nothing. Thus, it now depends on how Southampton’s manager moulds the player.
He hasn’t had the chance to play up to his full potential so far, but Southampton is one of the best at nurturing young, raw talent and thus, now he will have the best opportunity to hone his skills further.
3. Eric Bailly
Bailly, also a 22 year old, impressed everybody right on his debut. He gave a performance worthy of a Man of the Match during Manchester United’s win over Bournemouth.
Debuting alongside Zlatan Ibrahimovic can be daunting for anybody. However, Bailly ensured that that did not faze him, and that actually worked in his favour. United’s defence has been strong, but mostly shaky. Bailly’s arrival has strengthened their defence, and the youngster has already established a strong competition with Chris Smalling.
What might cause further problems for Smalling is the fact that Bailly has also built a good partnership with Daley Blind.
4. Idrissa Gueye
Idrissa Gueye played for Aston Villa last season, and there was perhaps little to no saving grace for them, as they got relegated from the Premier League. Gueye, on the other hand, was remarkable as an individual in that team, and Everton recognized that immediately. They matched the midfielder’s release clause to bring him to Goodison Park, and a good move it has turned out to be so far.
The 26-year-old did not look out of place even for a second, as he played at the heart of Ronald Koeman’s midfield, providing Everton with all the energy and pace required for the kind of high intensity game they were playing; all changes which have been introduced by their new manager.
5. N’golo Kante
Kante’s move to Leicester City last season drew a lot of eyeballs. He was a key player in Leicester’s midfield, and a lot of their success can be largely attributed to the amazing midfielder. Unfortunately, the Foxes were unable to retain him, and he made a move to Chelsea this season.
Although he picked up a booking quite early, Kante has been performing exactly like he did last season, which catapulted him into the league of one of the best midfielders of the Premier League.
Something was missing from Chelsea’s midfield and Kante seems like the answer to that. He has an inane ability to reclaim and convert possession. This will give balance to Antonio Conte’s team, who picked up a huge opening day win against West Ham.