• Home
  • /
  • Football
  • /
  • Four 'Game Changers' In The Premier League Next Season

Four 'Game Changers' In The Premier League Next Season

By Emmet O'Keeffe
Share this article

[tps_header]Setanta Sports announced on Monday that ESPN and BT Sport are set to become part of the Setanta package. That means you will be able to watch live coverage of 71 matches Premier League matches, featuring top analysis from the likes of Owen Hargreaves and David James. We know its early, but here are four players who could potentially make a significant difference to a Premier League 'Big Gun' next season.[/tps_header]

1. Henrikh Mkhitaryan

Although there have been some recent complications such as Shakhtar Donetsk claiming Mkhitaryan has gone AWOL and reports of a late bid for his services from Borussia Dortmund, if Liverpool could seal the deal for the Armenian, it would be a significant coup. After Jadson's departure to Sao Paulo before the start of last season, Shakhtar manager Mircea Lucescu shifted Mkhitaryan from a deep-lying midfielder to playing off the striker. You could say the move worked pretty well after 'Heno' scored 25 goals (all of which are in the video below) in an outstanding breakout season.

In this piece by "The Football Brain", Johnathan Wilson, Lucescu describes how "his integration was speeded up by his high level of football intelligence. His game awareness is perhaps his most valuable quality – that and the speed and power and technique Henrikh was gifted by nature and that he's developed. Because of those virtues, he's one of the players who most consistently fulfils the tasks set by the coaching staff. Working with him is fun." Also Mkhitaryan would solve a big need position for Brendan Rogers with the mediocre Jonjo Shelvey and Jordan Henderson both taking turns to play as most advanced of Liverpool's midfield three last season.

[Watch Video]

2. Gonzalo Higuain

With Juventus completing a move for Carlos Tevez to add to the free transfer of Fernando Llorente, it would be a surprise if Gonzalo Higuain ended up anywhere else but Arsenal. Although the Argentinean is not quite a complete centre-forward like for example, Robin Van Persie, he is a proven goalscorer at the highest level of club football with 111 goals in 207 games since breaking into the Real Madrid team in 2008 and 20 in 32 for Argentina.


The reported £22 Million fee also seems like good value 25-year-old striker who should have his best years ahead of him and may be influenced by Real being far too keen to get rid of him. Higuain has never quite got the credit he deserved in Madrid mainly due to his misfortune of being signed during the regime of previous club president Ramon Calderon. Since being re-elected in 2009, current president Florentino Pérez seem to have genuinely held that against him and given his influence over the Madrid media, it has left Higuain feeling understandably under-appreciated. Arsenal looked to have exploited Perez's megalomania and can be confident they have a man to finish off the chances that Santi Cazorla, Jack Wilshere et al should create.



3. Thiago Alcantara


The first and unfortunately probably not the last transfer saga of the summer should hopefully be coming to a conclusion soon with the signs just about pointing towards the Spain Under-21 captain heading to Manchester. £15 Million for one of the best young players in world football is an absolute steal and his arrival would be hugely positive for United for another reason.

One of the biggest questions marks surrounding David Moyes' appointment was Everton's over reliance on the long ball throughout his tenure and the signing of Thiago would indicate that the new manager will be employing a more positive, possession based game at United. Also no longer would Reds fans have to worry about their midfield being a glaring weakness come the knockout stages of the Champion's League.



4. Paulinho



Tottenham have reportedly matched Paulinho's £17 million release clause and Corinthians president has admitted that the departure of the player is imminent. Daniel Levy's failure to close the Joao Moutinho deal left Spurs without a proper replacement for Luka Modric and also forced Moussa Dembélé to play for the most part as a genuine midfielder last season.

The Belgian was reasonably impressive but he can thrive as Yaya Touré-style 'bomber' without any defensive responsibility, high up the pitch using his great feet and explosive power. Therefore the purchase of Paulinho should improve Andre Villas-Boas' side in two positions even if the Brazilian isn't quite in the mould of the Modric. However, he has impressed with his all-round performances at the Confederations Cup and should be effective as a box-to-box midfielder in the Premier League.




Join The Monday Club Have a tip or something brilliant you wanted to share on? We're looking for loyal Balls readers free-to-join members club where top tipsters can win prizes and Balls merchandise

Processing your request...

You are subscribed now!

Share this article

Copyright © 2023. All rights reserved. Developed by Square1 and powered by PublisherPlus.com