With less than 24 hours left for the start of another exciting season of the English Premier League (EPL), all football lovers across the globe are loaded with thrill and excitement. It is this very tournament that gives new household names whom we worship for years to come. In this upcoming season too, there will be a host new names who will make their debut, out of them some are relatively new and some very high profile names. Here is a rundown of ten debutants in EPL 2020-21 season to watch out for.
Hakim Ziyech (Chelsea)– Ziyech is a Moroccan footballer who has signed for the Blues from Ajax Amsterdam. He is a left footed attacking midfielder and has immense ball control and distribution ability with a finesse shot to his armour. Moreover, he is deadly with set-pieces. Out of the 35 matches he played in all competitions last season, he scored eight times and had 21 assists to his name. He is expected to play on the right flank for Chelsea, either in a 4-3-3 or a 4-2-3-1 team formation.
Donny Van De Beek (Manchester United)– Like Ziyech, this young Dutch central midfielder signed for Manchester United from Ajax Amsterdam. Although he plays in the center of the park, his contribution to the team is more as an offensive player rather than a defensive one. Manchester United warded off competition from the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona and signed him. The new trio of Pogba, Bruno and Van De Beek is expected to provide the much-needed solidity to the team’s midfield.
Timo Werner (Chelsea)– Chelsea activated Timo’s exit clause of £ 47.5 Million and signed him from German club RB Leipzig. Werner is nicknamed as ‘Turbo Timo’ for his swiftness and acceleration. Very energetic and hard-working number 9, who often drops deep to help retrieve balls and link-up play. He was the most important player for his previous club and is also a regular starter for the German national team. Timo has been on fire for the last couple of seasons, scoring and assisting 53 and 23 times respectively for both club and country. He truly has the potential to match Drogba’s footsteps, if not better him.
James Rodrigues (Everton)– The 29-year-old Colombian is unarguably the most high profile signing in Everton’s club history. It is almost a miraculous free transfer to Everton from Real Madrid as no cash was exchanged. Real Madrid who under the very same Ancelotti once bought him from Monaco for £ 67.5 Million, let go of him as they wanted to reduce their club’s wage bill which has been severely hit during this COVID crisis. The 2014 World Cup Golden Boot winner, reunited with Carlo Ancelotti who has worked with him at Real Madrid and Bayern Munich. James who was once considered as one of the best young players in the world, with his technical skill, vision and creativity, would be eager to rediscover his form and take EPL by storm.
Kai Havertz (Chelsea)– The signing of this 21-year-old German international was a real coup for Chelsea as almost all big clubs of Europe had him at the top of their transfer wishlist. He joined from Bayern Leverkusen for a reported fee of £ 72 Million with add-ons. Havertz is the kind of central midfielder Chelsea was looking for years, as he is a technically gifted two-footed midfielder who is comfortable with both feet and good in the air. His statistics reveal quite an extraordinary story as he has already amassed an impressive 36 goals and 25 assists from 118 Bundesliga outings. His touch on the ball is a joy to watch and looks quicker with the ball at his feet than when running without it.
Allan (Everton)– Another masterstroke of Ancelotti in the transfer market was acquiring the services of Brazilian Allan from Napoli for a reported fee of £ 22.5 Million. Primarily a defensive midfielder, several pundits in World football considers him as one of the finest midfielders. He is an extremely hard-working, unappeasable, mobile in the center of the park. His presence will add a lot of steel in Everton’s midfield. Paris Saint Germain wanted to sign Allan in the 2019-20 season and was ready to offer more than £ 70 Million for his services but were rejected by Ancelotti, the then coach of Napoli.
Gabriel Magalhaes (Arsenal)– The 22-year-old Brazilian center-back caught the eyes of many European clubs with his stellar performance with French club Lille last season. Arteta’s Arsenal paid £ 23.40 Million for his services. He was a long time target of Everton and Manchester United and was on the verge of joining Napoli in June. Though Gabriel is 6’3 in height, he is extremely pacey, a great tackler and has the ability to cover a lot of ground very fast. He has a genuinely good technique for a defender with excellent ball distribution and is very good in the air. Having made 24 appearances in Ligue 1 last season, Gabriel helped to guide Lille to fourth in the table. His robust presence in the backline with surely makes Arsenal a better team.
Matheus Pereira (West Bromwich Albion)– The 24-year-old Brazilian attacking midfielder initially joined West Bromwich Albion on a season-long loan from Portuguese club Sporting Lisbon with a buy-out option, which they triggered after his astounding season in Championship which propelled their club to the top tier. He was the top assist maker in the competition and won the Supporters’ Player of the Season’ award after collecting 65% of the votes. A quick, skilfull and creative player, with excellent technique and ball control, Pereira is known for his natural ability to pick out an inch-perfect pass, dribble effortlessly through two or three challenges or drift a shot into the top corner of the goal. He will surely give nightmares to opposition defense.
Matty Cash (Aston Villa)– Aston Villa signed Matty Cash from Championship club Nottingham Forest for little more than £ 14 Million. The 23-year-old has found himself utilized primarily as a right-back throughout the 2019/20 campaign but has experience playing in the right midfield role. The young right-back, although played in a lower-tier league, had suitors from many big clubs across Europe. He is extremely swift, a great tackler, dribbles well and makes crucial interceptions in matches. He has an all-round defensive game which makes him perfect for EPL.
Robin Koch (Leeds United)– Newly promoted Leeds United signed 24-year-old German center-back from Bundesliga club Freiburg for a fee of £ 12 Million. Leeds coach Marcelo Bielsa had his eyes on Koch after a string of great performances for Freiburg and the German national team. Although he mainly plays as a centre-back, he can play also play as a defensive midfielder. Koch has great anticipation skills, tackles well and is also adept with his head. Leeds will surely have a good quality center-back at their backline.