Top three Premier League transfers so far.
Posted by Featured Articles | Published on July 20, 2016
The new Premier League season is right around the corner and it’s no secret that a lot of big names have been linked with moves to the English top flight, but with a few potentially big players having already sealed deals, I thought I’d take a look at who I think will impress.
Ilkay Gundogan – Manchester City
Arriving at the Etihad for a fee in the region of £21m, Manchester City will be glad to have captured their man with rivals Manchester United having previously been linked with him.
Despite recent times being blighted by injury for Ikay, when fit, he has a tendency to get forward at every opportunity with 2.2 successful dribbles on average per game.
Taking into consideration the high success rate with his dribbling, Gundogan was only dispossessed once per match, Aaron Ramsey and Dele Alli gave it away at least twice.
His 87.7% pass completion rate is among the best in the league and has averaged more than two interceptions per game so he’ll no doubt be useful at both ends of the pitch.
His energetic style powered Dortmund’s thrilling counter attacks under Klopp, a trait well suited to the fast-paced Premier League. The brunt of Dortmund’s attacks often stemmed from Gundogan’s clever play, using his ability to dictate tempo to his advantage.
Many doubted this transfer, but £21m for a player of his calibre and at just 25-years-old, you just can’t seem to go wrong.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan – Manchester United
Next up, Mkhitaryan to Manchester United. Following Eric Bailly and Zlatan Ibrahimovic to England, it seems, despite no Champions League football next season, Manchester United are still able to convince big players to sign.
United seemed to do well against the bigger sides but struggle against the under-achievers, a common theme during Louis Van Gaal’s era, finding it hard to break down teams and create an opening.
What’s impressive is that the Armenian seems to have a consistently impressive goal tally, something that proves harder to achieve when you’re not acting as a striker.
The 27-year-old scored eleven times for Borussia Dortmund last season, adding 15 assists in the process.
His number of assists clearly highlights his creativity, vision and his acceleration during play, something that will be key to a side Jose Mourinho describes, “will try to be dominant.”
Introduced to Old Trafford as Mourinho’s third signing, I see him being the most influential of them all.
Granit Xhaka – Arsenal
Criticised heavily for his refusal to dip into the bank, fans can take the abuse on Arsene Wenger down a notch after completing the signing of Granit Xhaka, described by many as the perfect fit for an Arsenal side lacking in any real creativity during the last couple of years.
Although in need of a striker, Arsene Wenger’s priority was to strengthen the midfield After waving goodbye to the experienced trio of Mikel Arteta, Mathieu Flamini and Tomas Rosicky. Wenger had to find a way to replace them in his squad and may have done just that, in the form of Granit Xhaka.
Arsenal lacked someone with the composure to take the ball off the back four and instigate moves from the back having lost both Santi Cazorla and Mikel Arteta through long-term injuries.
His range of passing is excellent. Xhaka is as comfortable spraying a 50-yard cross-field pass as he is threading an intricate through ball into the penalty area. His technical ability is equal to his vision: he has the gift to see a pass and then execute it.
He can beat a man, too, Xhaka was successful in an outstanding 79% of his take-ons in last season’s Bundesliga which proves he can cope well under pressure in a congested midfield.
What the arrival of Xhaka brings is, not only a fresh head with new ideas and styles of play, but also adds extra competition with Elneny, Ramsey and Ozil accompanied by the return to fitness of Jack Wilshere, Arsene Wenger could well have something of a selection headache come the start of the season.