Friday, September 29, 2023

From Bundesliga To The Premier League: Arsenal And Southampton Stars Impress And Make The List

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Anas Molla
An ageing teenager who apparently still likes Twenty One Pilots and HIMYM. Also fascinated by Greek and Egyptian mythology and history. Still waiting for my man Milos Raonic to win a Grand Slam.

Moving from the Bundesliga to the English Premier League has been on the trend in the past few seasons now. With players seeking to get more fame and money by moving to the Premier League clubs. In the past few seasons, players like Kevin De Bruyne, Heung-Min Son, Emre Can etc. have moved to big PL clubs for a hefty amount of fees. This summer, it has been a no exception either.

We discuss the top three players who have been impressive this season after moving from the Bundesliga to the Premier League.

  1. Papy Djilobodji (Sunderland)

Djilobodji was bought by Chelsea last season on the deadline day of last season from French Ligue 1 outfit FC Nantes. He arrived for a fee of three and a half million euros (according to However, the Senegalese defender played only one minute of football for Chelsea until he was loaned out to Bundesliga club SV Werder Bremen, in January.

Djilobodji quickly made a mark at Werder, featuring in the first team on 14 occasions and proving to be a crucial part for Die Grün-Weißen. Djilobodji’s crucial goal against Eintracht Frankfurt in the final match day also saved Werder from the relegation playoff places.

SUNDERLAND, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 12: Papy Djilobodji of Sunderland reacts during the Premier League match between Sunderland and Everton at Stadium of Light on September 12, 2016 in Sunderland, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

In the summer this season, the 27-year-old moved to Premier League strugglers Sunderland for a hefty fee of 9.5 million euros.

Although Sunderland are lavishing at the bottom of the table with just two points this season, Djilobodji’s contribution to the squad cannot be undermined. In a total of five appearances for the Black Cats, Djilobodji’s defensive stats seem very impressive. The Senegalese International made 21 interceptions (4.2 per game!) along with a whopping amount of 45 clearances (9 per game). The former Bremen man also averaged a total of 15(!) defensive actions per game (via Squawka) and has won 81% of his headed duels this season, more than any player in the Premier League! (min 15 headers).

Sunderland may yet finish bottom of the table come the end of this season, despite Djilobodji’s amazing defensive stats but the Black Cats are known for their famous relegation escapes in their PL history and if they do, Papy Djilobodji will no doubt be a big part of the success.

  1. Granit Xhaka

The transfer of Granit Xhaka from Borussia Monchengladbach to Arsenal was one of the big talking points of this transfer window among the football addicts, more because of the strapping transfer fee of 45 million euros. Whether he can live up to his billing in the Arsenal setup was a question for each and every Gunners fan.

Coming into match day seven, the Arsenal fans may well be lustful of their new signing!

The league game against Watford, marked a start of great things ahead for the former Gladbach man, as Arsene Wenger’s troops are on a winning streak since. His exceptional long range effort against Hull City, was enough to prove his credentials as a 45 million euro man.

Xhaka’s lineup play and long balls has been a boon for Arsene Wenger and his team, as the Swiss International has averaged 3.3 long balls per game along with an overall passing accuracy of 88%. Defensively, Xhaka has also been tight, making nine interceptions and eight clearances in six outings for Arsenal so far.

The ball distribution qualities of the 24-year-old are on a higher stratum and Xhaka has been key for dictating the play for his team, the presence of Aaron Ramsey will do a world of good for Xhaka, as the Welsh International can carry out the stress of providing the attacking flair in the team.

Overall, Granit Xhaka has been an exciting component in the Arsenal team and the midfielder was convincing enough to win the second spot in our article.

  1. Pierre-EmileHøjbjerg(Southampton)

Another player who failed to break into FC Bayern’s first team, Pierre-Emile Højbjerg was promoted to the Bayern first team in 2013. But having been failed to impress the Bayern management, he experienced a couple of loan moves to FC Augsburg and FC Schalke. Even though, Højbjerg is labelled as a big asset for Danish football, the 21-year-old midfielder couldn’t quite get his recognition at the Bavarian club as he would have wanted to.

Eventually, Højbjerg made a move to Premier League with Southampton, this summer permanently for a fee of 15 million. And so far, The Danish midfielder has been a real success for the Saints this season. Slotting in as the central midfield in Claude Puel’s team, the 21-year-old manages n impressive passing accuracy of 91%.

SOUTHAMPTON, UNITED KINGDOM - AUGUST 27: Pierre Emile Hojbjerg of Southampton is tackled by Lynden Gooch of Sunderland during the Premier League match between Southampton and Sunderland at St Mary's Stadium on August 27, 2016 in Southampton, England. (Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images)

The former Bayern man, also created eight chances for the Saints this season, along with 10 interceptions and managing a Squawka ratings of 173, most by any Southampton player except Virgil Van Dijk, which highlights his importance in Southampton midfield.

The Dane seems to have found the right club for his glittering future ahead and we can hope that the 21-year-old will be a cornerstone for great things ahead for Southampton.

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