15 Players Who Will Light The Premier League On Fire In 2015-16 – RantSports

15 Players Who Will Light The Premier League On Fire In 2015-16 – RantSports.

My piece for RantSports on players who will have a big season in the Premier League in 2015/16. These are numbered but not in any particular order. Just numbers on a list.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
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The Premier League is no stranger to shock performances from teams, or an individual, in any one season. Last season’s performances from Southampton and Harry Kane were perfect examples of that. The continued arrivals of talented individuals to the Premier League means that there will be some new stars. Other players, who’ve either adjusted after the first season or are just now growing into their game, will reach new heights.

15. Xherdan Shaqiri – Stoke City

Xherdan Shaqiri
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Xherdan Shaqiri’s arrival at Stoke City is a surprise because of the match between player and club. It’s all good news for Stoke and not so much for their opponents. Shaqiri’s stocky, muscular build coupled with his pace and dribbling will make him a menace for Premier League defenders. He can play out wide or behind the striker, or strikers, and has a decent eye for goal as well.

14. Jefferson Montero – Swansea City

Jefferson Montero
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Jefferson Montero started 15 games for Swansea City last season and was subbed on for another 15. The Ecuadorian winger showed flashes of why he attracted such interest last summer with his direct attacking. His performance against Branislav Ivanovic at Chelsea showed he is ready for a more consistent role and will be a key figure for the Welsh side. He should tally up the assists with targets like Eder and Bafetimbi Gomis meeting his crosses.

13. Dimitri Payet – West Ham

Dimitri Payet
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Dimitri Payet showed quite a few talents in his first Premier League game against Arsenal. The French midfielder’s strength on the ball, along with his great dribbling skills and ability on set-pieces were on display. Payet will be the main creative influence for West Ham regardless of formation, and his time in Ligue 1, and his first Premier League performance, showed he has what it takes to handle the league.

12. Christian Fuchs – Leicester City

Christian Fuchs
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It will only be a matter of time before Christian Fuchs becomes a regular starter for Leicester City. The club barely survived relegation last season but picked up a player with plenty of Champions League experience in the form of Fuchs. Noted for his excellent crossing ability, Fuchs will make an impact on offense for Leicester and will prove tough opposition defensively for even the league’s best.

11. Andre Ayew – Swansea City

Andre Ayew
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Andre Ayew is another player who started life in the Premier League with a bang. His goal against Chelsea blended skill, composure and determination that Swansea City, and Premier League, fans can get used to. Ayew’s versatility means he can, and most likely will, play in a few positions and has the intelligence to be extremely effective in any one.

10. Angelo Ogbonna – West Ham

Angelo Ogbonna
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West Ham have upgraded their defense with a Serie A champion in the form of Angelo Ogbonna. The Italian defender’s reputation may have taken a knock as he wasn’t a regular for Juventus, but many would find it hard to get past Leonardo Bonucci or Giorgio Chiellini. Ogbonna is a powerful central defender with good pace and can pass out of the back as well. That skill will be quite useful in unleashing West Ham’s strikers.

9. Matteo Darmian – Manchester United

Matteo Darmian
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Matteo Darmian received many plaudits for his first Premier League performance for a club of Manchester United’s stature. The Italian defender was intelligent in his positioning and comfortable dealing with any threats down his side. Darmian looks like a defender who will be extremely efficient and consistent in both attack and defense. He may not have gotten a chance to show that too much against Tottenham, but there’s a full season ahead.

8. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – Arsenal

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
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Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is a known entity in the Premier League, but he has yet to put together a consistent season. Whether it be injuries or a lack of playing time due to competition, fans have yet to see “the Ox” fully bloom. The 2015-16 season could be the one as he looks to add more productivity in an attacking sense, whether through goals or assists. His performance in Arsenal’s games against West Ham and Chelsea suggest he’s ready.

7. Georginio Wijnaldum – Newcastle

Georginio Wijnaldum
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Georginio Wijnaldum may not be as flashy of some of the talents on this list, but that’s not what sets him apart. What Newcastle have gotten is a very intelligent midfielder, one capable of scoring goals and dictating play for his side. Wijnaldum will provide the likes of Papiss Cisse and Aleksandar Mitrovic with chances, but he will also ghost into the box himself to finish off moves, just as he did against Southampton.

6. Dusan Tadic – Southampton

Dusan Tadic
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A return of four goals and seven assists is nothing to scoff at for a debut Premier League season. Dusan Tadic only started 24 games for Southampton last season and one would expect more playing time to improve those statistics. Tadic also had to get used to the high energy of the Premier League after moving from PSV in the Eredivisie, so Southampton will look to see his influence increase regularly this season.

5. Eliaquim Mangala – Manchester City

Eliaquim Mangala
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Eliaquim Mangala’s first season in the Premier League was, to put it nicely, eventful. The French defender arrived from Porto and never looked at ease in the frenetic league. There’s a reason why Manchester City splashed the cash on him though, as Mangala’s physical tools, pace and power make him a great fit for the league. His first season was a learning curve, but now Mangala will form an effective partnership with Vincent Kompany.

4. Memphis Depay – Manchester United

Memphis Depay
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Memphis is one of the Premier League’s most exciting additions and the reasons for that are obvious. The Dutch attacker has all the qualities necessary to be a fantastic player in the future. He’s had a slow start to life at Manchester United, but a period of assimilation will then lead to what all fans want to see: Goals, skills and plenty of creativity.

3. Max Gradel – Bournemouth

Max Gradel
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Max Gradel received some recognition from Jose Mourinho when he was signed by Bournemouth, as the Portuguese manager stated the winger could play for Chelsea. Gradel showed a glimpse of his talent in a cameo for his new side, constantly drawing defenders and using a mixture of pace and trickery to beat his man. He is coming off of a season where he scored 17 goals for St. Etienne, so one can expect him to hit the net as well.

2. Nathan Redmond – Norwich City

Nathan Redmond
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Nathan Redmond is back in the Premier League and this time he will be more equipped to make a difference. The 21-year-old was Norwich’s best performer, and only goalscorer, against Crystal Palace, and he will look to build on that performance. One of the many dribblers on this list, Redmond’s also adept at shots from long-range, and fans will certainly see some of those efforts.

1. Jordon Ibe – Liverpool

Jordon Ibe
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Brendan Rodgers’ trust in youth means Jordon Ibe will get plenty of chances on the pitch. The young winger has fantastic pace and a strong build to help him brush of defenders. He’s not short of confidence and will take on his opponents on a regular basis. Ibe will likely chip in with a goal or two as well to help the Liverpool cause.

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