EPL: New boys on the block
Each transfers window brings unfamiliar and peculiar goal scorers to these shores, Michu and Benteke being the standout of 2012. This year other clubs have seen the value of the unvalued or young and dynamic and here is a list of new in the Premier League strikers that can bring that most glistening and visceral thing to a side, goals.
Ricky van Wolfswinkel
As frivolous of a connection this may be but when a player carries the suffixes ‘van’ in their name one does become captivated. Only Nistelrooy and Persie can take claim to be the best ‘van’ in Premier League history but as a famous green puppet ones said, there is another.
At 24 Ricky’s move to the Premier League has come just in time, physically he has been allowed to mature and having the benefit of playing outside of the Eredivisie. Which rules out any accusations of van Wolfswinkel of being the next Alfonso Alves. A decent goals return for Sporting Lisbon promoted a £8.5Million move to the East Anglia side that have added most wisely per capita this transfer window.
Since Euro 2012 a thin narrative concerning the death of the No.9 not only as position but also as a number to be used in football at all was doomed. For the early years of this decade number nines have been given a dirty name, for so long players would pick alternative squad numbers to not appear cliché or one-dimensional. Alas nobody told Paul Lambert, Michu or Lewandowski and the position and shirt was back with a bang.
This fabrication for the covenant purpose of making everyone play Tiki Taka has been hit with some serious counter culture, and in the form of Nicklas Helenius Villa have got a whole lot of punk. Standing in at six foot five inches another great Dane has invaded the Premier League. Despite a profile big enough deserving of over 100 career appearances for his club and two international caps Helenius only cost Paul Lambert £1.2Million, which could prove to be business to rival that of Michu’s capture one year ago. As his role may be to subsidise in the absence of Benteke he will have to take his chances when given. However he joins an growing list of impressive under 23’s at Villa Park.
The top goal scorer in Danish Superliga last year with 18 goals in 34 games the 20 year old Danish international is targeting the target man role in Malky Mackay’s newly promoted Cardiff City team. Here are the numbers; burdened upon him has been a £9million transfer fee, which was for a short time a club record, and the number 9 shirt. At six foot four inches the Dane has the shoulders big enough to carry such expectation if not the football ability.
Having only made his senior debut in April 2012 Cornelius feet have probably not had a chance to touch the ground, which bodes well considering Cardiff’s style of play. With seven senior Danish caps in what is considered to be a golden generation of Danes Andreas’s has the potential to bring the most valuable of commodities to teams aiming for survival, goals.
A sleigh, slippery character who would be described in cricketing circles as canny. With 12 leagues goals in a relegated Celta Vigo side in 2012-13 Aspas if anything shows he is a fighter. His first task will be to play the Luis Suarez role for the first six game of the season if not indefinitely if the Uruguayan departs Anfield this summer.
A left footed forward with a degree of versatility who will undoubtedly be asked to play a multitude of roles by Rodgers and the 26 year old will get plenty of playing time between now and December. However his slight frame and fitness poses questions about a player’s ability to complete first full season in England with continued success.
Swansea City’s record signing from Vitesse for £12Million comes into an already successful team. League Cup champions and now the south Wales side are heading into the group stages of the Europa League. Despite being the most expensive signing in the clubs history Bony will be seen either as a partner to Michu or as part of a rotation policy Laudrup is looking to implement to make sure Swansea are equally affective domestically as well as on the European stage.
With 46 goals in 65 games in Holland we have seen players who have impressive goal to game records succeed and fail in equal measure when they make the short journey from Holland to the Premier League. However his impressive physical attributes will bring something new to a relatively lightweight Swansea front line and at 24 years of age there is certainly room for development.
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