What a busy last few days it was in the transfer market! After a short break to take things in, it’s time to have one final assessment of the new transfers. Who should we be chasing and who should we avoid? It’s time for the fresh blood season finale!
Sakho (5.5) 0.3%
Liverpool have had the best defence so far this season, yet to concede a goal (including an away trip to Villa and Manchester United). With Toure going down injured (unsurprisingly) they have had to dip into the transfer market to strengthen that centre half position, and boy have they done just that. £15m is a hefty sum, however Sakho is first team quality and makes a great statement of intent by Pool. His fpl prospects are simple, it all depends on his job security. What do I think? Described by Brendan Rodgers as “a marquee signing”, Liverpool’s hardly spent £15m on a defender to take on the role of bench-warmer. Toure and Skrtel are almost certain to fall behind in the pecking order, with Agger and Sakho surely the go to partnership. An interesting move could also see them switch to a 3 at the back system, something they tested out last year, pushing Enrique further up onto a wing. Both are possibilities, and hopefully both should include Sakho firmly in Liverpool’s plans.
His 5.5 price tag is very appealing, seeing as Liverpool’s other defensive starters are all at 6.0 or more. There’s no doubt it would be a slight risk however, and personally I will be spending the extra 0.6 to bring in Enrique. It all depends on how tight your budget is, if you’re are struggling for cash then he should be a great pick up.
Lamela (9.0) 0.3%
There is no doubt that he’s an exciting talent, and his young age of 21 makes Spurs £30m price tag seem justifiable. He is a player of the future. The question we have to ask is, is he a player ready to explode right now? 15 goals and 5 assists in the Serie A last season proves he has a keen eye for goal, and with Spurs struggling for options wide right, this is where I expect him to be situated. Whilst there has been talk of him moving into a more central role, whilst his flexibility allows him to do that, the competition is too stiff for me. With fellow signings Eriksen and Soldado likely to play through the middle a wing role seems imminent.
Whilst he’s had one great season, we must remember that that is all he’s had. Spurs have paid half the sum for potential, and there’s no doubt somewhere down the track he could be an fpl premium. However a steep price tag of 9.0 due to that transfer fee turns me off him somewhat. For a young player it will be hard for him to make an immediate impact in the premier league, yet alone enough to justify that price tag. With plenty of proven talents around the same price, I’m going to avoid him for now. However if he starts to fire, don’t be afraid to jump on board! Very risky to begin with.
Willian (8.5) 0.2%
This one is much more straight forward for me. If only he had gone to Spurs, things may have been different. Instead we are left to deal with even more rotation concerns by Mourinho. Impossible to select with the talent around him. With no more than 5 goals in a single season throughout his whole career, I’m not willing to pay 8.5 to rely on assists from the bench! Perhaps a little harsh? I’m just frustrated Chelsea went overboard in midfield and hijacked a done deal, money does talk I guess. Not for me.
Eriksen (8.0) 0.5%
He is of a similar age and experience to Lamela, however his budget friendly price of just 8.0 brings him right into contention. Spurs got a bargain here, signing the classy 21 year-old Dutchman for just £11m as he was into the last year of his contract. He suits the role of a central playmaker and is likely to be fielded in an attacking midfield role, however whether that’s in a 4-2-3-1 or a 4-3-3 is anyone’s guess right now. Either way, with 17 goals and a massive 36 assists in his last 2 league seasons the prospects are bright. I’m going to take the same approach I did with Lamela, these young signings with no experience outside their leagues may take a little while to settle down in the Premier League. It would be blind faith to select him first up with job security no certainty yet, as he could be easily sacrificed if Villas-Boas opts for more resilience in the middle of the park. Another one for the watchlist I suggest.
Arnautovic (5.5) 0.1%
At first glance, you would think there’s nothing much to see here. However if you look a little deeper, we could have ourselves this seasons Michu. Ok that’s a hefty comparison, but he is definitely an OOP prospect. Having been mainly utilised as a right winger at his previous club, FPL have classified him as a budget midfielder. However standing at 6 ft 3, he could certainly offer an alternative to the struggling Peter Crouch upfront. 5 goals and 8 assists in the Bundesliga last season prove he is certainly capable of delivering on the big stage, and his strong body should adapt well to the Premier League.
Hailed as the next Zlatan Ibrahimovic early in his career, Arnautovic certainly isn’t short on skill, however a lack of application has been his downfall up until this point. His fpl prospects may well be decided by what position Hughes decides to field him, although job security seems to be solid. While back-to-back games against City and Arsenal will cool interest for now, they should offer us an idea on how Hughes is going to utilise Arnautovic. With three home games (NOR, WBA, SOT) and a trip to Fulham in four of the next five from GW6, Stoke’s upcoming schedule takes a turn for the better and, if Hughes decides to field him upfront, his ownership could see a sharp upturn. Watchlist for sure.
Osvaldo (8.0) 0.3%
No doubt the Italian bad boy could be a great POD, 16 goals in 29 appearances last season prove he has a keen eye for goal, not to mention a heap of potential. However I have one issue, Lambert is still priced cheaper at 7.6, is on penalty and free kick duties, is adapted to the premier league, a proven EPL scorer and probably England’s in form striker. You can’t go past that if looking to select one of the two Southampton front men. Will play a supporting role to Lambert it seems, not for me.
Eto’o (9.0) 0.6%
If you’re into old men then this is the selection for you. Ok, let me expand a little. Mourinho has managed 3 premier league games and started 3 different strikers. Enter a 32 year-old. Rotation much? It could be a great piece of business by Chelsea, and if he’s maintained that skill we saw a few years ago at Inter and Barca then watch out. However 9.0 is an awful lot for someone who has a high tendency to be rotated, yet alone the fact that there’s 4 other in form strikers around the same price tag. I don’t think you can afford to start with him, however certainly monitor his progress. A proven goal scorer.
Ozil (10.0) 6.1%
Finally it’s time to take a closer look at the man on everyone’s lips. Is he worth the 10.0m? Here’s the prospects. To put it quite simply, I’m not sure there is a better playmaker in the world currently. He made an INCREDIBLE 55 assists in 105 appearances for Madrid, even then only 26 of those included the full 90 minutes. In fact he created over 4 goal scoring opportunities on average per 90 minutes. Compare that to Silva who created 3.2. Bear in mind that he is still only 24 and continually getting better, last season he made 26 assists in 2032 league minutes. No typo. Ok, so Arsenal may not have the quality that Madrid do. Will that affect him? He also made 17 assists at the age of 21 for Werder Breman in the Bundesliga. I think he’ll be right.
He’s also not only about assists, scoring 9 goals in the Liga BBVA last season. Compare that to Yaya Toure’s 6, Silva’s 4, Hazard’s 9 and he’s right up there, bettered by only Cazorla and Mata in Central attacking positions. If you consider Silva to be his closest comparison, he managed 6 goals and 17 assists in his best season, figures Ozil hasn’t failed to notch since 2009.
The stats are all pointing in the right direction, then you remember that he can only get better. He will benefit from being Arsenal’s main focal point, although it will be interesting to see how he handles the extra spotlight. As an Arsenal fan I am certainly not going to miss the bandwagon, if all goes wrong you can transfer him to any midfielder in the game! So far it seems that 175000+ managers agree with me. I don’t think you can lose in this situation, I’ve got him in!
That should just about wrap up fresh blood for the summer transfer window! I hope you all found it helpful, it will return in time for the January transfer window. With the GW4 deadline now closing in, it is time to re-focus our attention back on fpl. A few injuries are hitting our squads over the international break, which is usually a given. Keep an eye out for the News Wrap later in the week for more info. We will also be back with an edition of the captains, as well as our regulation gameweek preview on Friday.
Also be sure to leave any questions you may have in the comments down below, or ask us on twitter @FPLaddicts. We will put together a list for this weeks Q&A to come out later this week. Plenty to look forward to, see you then! Cheers.