The new season is almost upon us as the teams have finally wrapped up their preseasons and are gearing up for the big opening match day in the Premier League 2016-17 campaign. All the teams find themselves on an even keel at the beginning, at least theoretically, with the points tally reading zero beside each team. But the clubs start gaining brownie points over the summer itself as they look to sign the best players available who suit their profile. Quite expectedly the big clubs hog the limelight with their big-money blockbuster signings. But there have been transfers this season, which though they have been made on a reasonable budget have not caught the imagination of the media or the football fraternity at large.
We look at 3 players who have the ability to surprise the Premier League after seemingly having been swept under the carpet after an initial hullabaloo.
JORDON IBE (BOURNEMOUTH)
Jordon Ibe was signed up for a club record transfer to Bournemouth for a reported £15m. He has signed on a 4-year deal and came as a shock signing for the Cherries. Though the Liverpool fans were excited to see the development of the youngster under the enigmatic Klopp, the perceived lack of opportunities rendered the move as suitable for both parties. Ibe came up the ranks at Wycombe Wanderers and signed for Liverpool on December 20, 2011. He will look to plug the gap which was created after Matt Richie left for Newcastle United in July. The youngster is known for his dribbling abilities and for a brief period of time was likened to his former teammate Raheem Sterling. The player will look to kick on for Bournemouth and help them build on an impressive first season in the top-flight.
FERNANDO LLORENTE (SWANSEA)
Swansea snapped up the former World Cup and Euro Cup winner from Sevilla. The Welsh club were desperately short on striking options and the signing of Llorente somewhat addresses the issue. Llorente will bring undoubted pedigree to the side with his proven track record and experience of playing at the highest level. His aerial prowess will be an added bonus to the Welsh side who possess excellent traditional wingers capable of putting in the crosses for the striker to take advantage of. He will be eager to make a mark in the league and look to make an impact on the similar lines as another Spanish striker Michu had on the Swans.
IDRISSA GUEYE (EVERTON)
Ronald Koeman snapped up the former Aston Villa star for a reported £7.1m. The Senegalese is expected to shore up the Toffees midfield as the Dutch manager looks to stamp his authority over the squad. With an ageing midfield to contend with, Everton were linked with multiple defensive midfielders but zeroed in on Aston Villa’s best player in the previous season. He mainly plays in central midfield and is known for his all-around game. His passing, defensive contribution, ball holding skills are exemplary. He made 140 interceptions, 38 clearances and 6 blocks for Villa in what was a one-man show in the 35 games he played in. Everton will expect the player to continue his rich vein of form and hope he mirrors Kante’s performances to an extent for them.