EPL Week 1 Predictions: Forwards Who Will Shine for New Sides
Continuing what’s been widely considered one of the most eventful summers of recent Premier League history, the English first tier returns to domestic action this weekend.
The last few months have been just about as eventful as any other in terms of transfer news and manager comings and goings, all of which will reveal their first real tests in the coming days.
Whether they’ve come to be at their current club after spending time abroad or have simply adopted a change in division surroundings this summer, there’s a bevy of new faces one can look forward to seeing in the Premier League this season.
That said, the signs are all there for some to cope slightly better than others with their new responsibilities, especially when taking into consideration just this weekend’s fixtures.
Week 1 Opposition: Crystal Palace (A)
Having scored a penalty on his debut for the North London club, life at Tottenham Hotspur couldn’t have gotten off to a much better start for Roberto Soldado.
The Spaniard arrived at White Hart Lane for a fee in the region of £26 million last week and looks set to bear the brunt of the attacking duties at his new side, especially if Gareth Bale chooses to move to Real Madrid.
Soldado has been a key component at Valencia for a number of seasons now, but managed to net 24 goals in just 33 games for the La Liga club last term, the exact kind of confidence Spurs are looking for in front of goal.
Andre Villas-Boas’ side have a good record against Crystal Palace down the years, and Ian Holloway’s men weren’t all that impressive on the defensive side of things last term.
On paper, Tottenham would look certain to earn three points against the Premier League new boys, Soldado benefitting from the fixture as much as any other.
Club: West Brom
Week 1 Opposition: Southampton (H)
Can Anelka still cut it in the Premier League?
Back in the Premier League after just one season away in foreign lands, Nicolas Anelka, once again, looks set to assert his influence on the English top flight.
Although 34 years of age, the former Chelsea striker has looked impressive in preseason for the Baggies and still appears to have a scoring touch about him.
In the absence of last season’s on-loan hero Romelu Lukaku, another will need to step up to the striking plate for Steve Clarke’s side, and there’s no reason Anelka can’t combine well with the likes of Shane Long and Matej Vydra to be that figure.
In fact, Andy Brassell expressed that exact view over Twitter this week:
Matej Vydra playing just off Nicolas Anelka? Looking forward to having a look at West Brom already.— Andy Brassell (@andybrassell) August 13, 2013
Southampton’s defence may have been improved by the signing of some decent players this summer, but that’s still not saying too much for a side who conceded an average of 1.89 goals per game when away from home last term.
Week 1 Opposition: Stoke City (H)
As strong as any other Liverpool in preseason, Iago Aspas can look forward to his side’s Week 1 meeting against Stoke City with high hopes that it’s him who gets the nod for a starting spot.
Daniel Sturridge has been absent through a lot of this summer’s preparation with injury, but he has recovered in time for the new campaign to rival the Spaniard.
However, if it is the prolific Aspas whom Brendan Rodgers names in his starting XI, the striker can hope to spearhead the Reds’ new-look attack in front of an Anfield crowd for the first time in his Premier League career.
Mark Hughes’ defence was very impressive under Tony Pulis, but it will be interesting to see if they open up under their new manager’s tactics, to which Aspas can hope to take advantage of.
Week 1 Opposition: Fulham (H)
A fourth and final new addition to the Premier League’s striking ranks, Jozy Altidore re-opens his account in the English top flight against Fulham this weekend.
The USA international previously spent a fruitless season on loan with Hull City, but following some key stages in his development as a player, including a very prolific 2012-13 season with AZ Alkmaar, Altidore is far more equipped for the demands of the division.
Fulham made several key transfers very early in the summer, but have stagnated somewhat in their movement and have an inconsistent Maarten Stekelenburg in goal.
Altidore is yet to engage in any sort of mad scoring run for the Black Cats this preseason, but has shown some very promising buildup play and an inevitably good amount of strength, considering his size.
What is the duplicate article?
Why is this article offensive?
Where is this article plagiarized from?
Why is this article poorly edited?