Bournemouth newboy and 4 more Prem signings set for great debuts
The transfer window may have slammed shut, but the excitement is only getting started, with fans throughout the Premier League waiting for a first glimpse of their new stars on the ball this weekend.
And it could be a weekend of instant heroes, with a raft of hugely talented players rocking up at clubs across the league in the final days of the window. Here are our top five debutants likely to make a splash this weekend.
Jack Wilshere (Bournemouth)
After 15 years at Arsenal, one of the club’s most famous youth products will be wearing a Bournemouth shirt for the first time this weekend. And with the Gunners’ holding a huge place in the 24-year-old’s heart, the loanee will be keen to convince Arsene Wenger of his worth at the Emirates.
Combined with the motivation of helping the Cherries climb up the table, we’re backing the tough-tackling midfielder to cause endless problems for the West Brom defence on Saturday.
And he looks a good bet to net against the Baggies at 7/2, with two of his last five Premier League goals coming against Tony Pulis’ men.
Hal Robson-Kanu (West Bromwich Albion)
Talking of the Baggies, they’ve bagged an eye-catching buy of their own. Free agent Hal Robson-Kanu reported that he’d received offers from “around the world” after his spectacular Cruyff-turn goal at Euro 2016, but it’s Albion who have come out with his signature.
Whether it’s a shot at Premier League football or the chance to visit the Black Country Living Museum which has attracted the 27-year-old, we’re not sure. But one thing not up for debate is the fact the former Reading man is enjoying the finest form of his career.
Having netted five times for club and country since the start of 2016, he could be set for another productive day in this one, especially with the Cherries having kept a single clean sheet in their last 12 outings.
Claudio Bravo (Manchester City)
We saw the changing of the guard between the sticks at the Etihad, as Joe Hart exited for Torino after 348 games for the Citizens, and Claudio Bravo arrived in his place.from Barcelona.
The 33-year-old looks set to make his Premier League bow this weekend in the most dramatic circumstances possible, as City head to local rivals Manchester United, with Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho poised to rekindle their rivalry.
Having kept an astonishing 16 clean sheets in 32 La Liga outings last season, there could be plenty of value in backing Man City to win to nil at Old Trafford at 9/2, with Bravo in net.
Islam Slimani (Leicester City)
While the Foxes transformed Jamie Vardy into a Premier League goal machine, it seems their new striker might be ready to slot into that role already, following a whopping 27 goals in 33 league games for Sporting CP last season.
The centre-forward has a build which will we reckon will see Jamie Redknapp describe him as “literally a tank” at some point this season – and matched with his unerring eye for goal and intelligent link-up play, he could well be the Foxes’ most important player this season.
And there’s every chance he’ll open his account at Anfield this weekend, with Liverpool having shipped six goals in their opening three Premier League games, and it’s 8/1 he scores the opener on Merseyside.
Enner Valencia (Everton)
An ever-present in the Ecuador side, eyebrows were raised last season when West Ham’s £12.75m man struggled to get a regular place under boss Slaven Bilic. But their indifference is almost certain to mark Everton’s gain.
The pacy, fleet-footed winger looks an ideal fit for Ronald Koeman’s expansive, all-action Toffees side, and the Goodison Park faithful are likely to get a first look at their new loan acquisition at Sunderland on Monday night.
The 26-year-old has netted against six Premier League sides since his arrival in English football, and it’s 2/1 that he makes the Black Cats his seventh victim and ensures a dream debut in the process.
Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing