EPL Transfer Rumours: 10 Lesser-Known Brits Who Could Move to Major Clubs

Jared Dublin@jareddublinAnalyst IIJune 20, 2011

EPL Transfer Rumours: 10 Lesser-Known Brits Who Could Move to Major Clubs

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    BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MAY 01:  Referee, Kevin Friend speaks to Matt Jarvis of Wolves during the Barclays Premier League match between Birmingham City and Wolverhampton Wanderers at St Andrews on May 1, 2011 in Birmingham, England.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaro
    Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

    With big name players and marquee signings dominating the transfer news, the pursuit of lesser-known players often goes unnoticed.

    Foreign stars such as Wesley Sneijder and Javier Pasore are routinely linked with a move to the EPL. However, the elite English clubs pursue above-average local talent as well.

    Britain may not produce the same amount of world-class players as Spain, but there is quality throughout the United Kingdom. U-21 internationals and late-blooming professionals have all courted interest from top clubs.

    Here are 10 lesser-known Brits who could move to major clubs this summer.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

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    SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 29:  Alex Chamberlain of Southampton in action during the FA Cup sponsored by E.ON 4th Round match between Southampton and Manchester United at St Mary's Stadium on January 29, 2011 in Southampton, England.  (Photo by Clive
    Clive Rose/Getty Images

    Name: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

    Age: 17

    Club: Southampton

    Position: Winger

    Possible Destinations: Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United

    Projected Transfer Fee: £12 million

    The Southampton winger is among the most highly sought-after Brits in the summer transfer window. At 17 years old, Chamberlain is the youngest and arguably most exciting player on this list. The winger looks to be one of the most promising English prospects of his generation, courting the interest of England's elite clubs.

    Chamberlain provides genuine width and blistering pace on the flanks. The Englishman has the skill to beat defenders in 1v1 situations, race to the byline and deliver a cross into the area. Although he needs to improve his delivery from wide positions, the potential and talent is there in abundance.

    With Liverpool and Manchester United already signing young English talent in Jordan Henderson and Phil Jones, respectively, Arsenal look set to land the pacy winger. While there is always a possibility of another club making a late swoop for the Southampton starlet, the Gunners are in prime position to acquire the £12 million-rated Englishman.

Jay Bothroyd

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    CARDIFF, WALES - NOVEMBER 20 :   Jay Bothroyd of Cardiff City in action during the npower Championship match between Cardiff City and Nottingham Forest at Cardiff City Stadium on November 20, 2010 in Cardiff, Wales.  (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)
    Jan Kruger/Getty Images

    Name: Jay Bothroyd

    Age: 28

    Club: Cardiff City

    Position: Striker

    Possible Destinations: Everton, Bolton, Sunderland and Newcastle

    Projected Transfer Fee: Free

    After an impressive 20-goal season for Cardiff City, out-of-contract striker Jay Bothroyd looks destined for a move to England's top-flight. With his excellent mid-season form, the Englishman earned his first international cap in November. At 28 years old, Bothroyd is in his prime footballing years, and starting to fulfill the great potential he showed as an Arsenal youth player.

    The Englishman boasts a rare combination of physicality and technical ability. At 6'3'', Bothroyd is an imposing presence upfront, and uses his body well to shield the ball. In addition to his strength, the Cardiff striker has a sweet left foot. Bothroyd has a good touch for a big striker, and can unleash a blistering left-footed strike from distance. Although he might not be a world-class option in the attack, the Englishman has the build and technique of a quality striker.

    Bothroyd's free transfer fee makes him a primary target for a multitude of English clubs. Everton, Bolton, Sunderland and Newcastle are possible destinations for the Cardiff City Bosman transfer. With the Merseysider's recent struggles upfront, manager David Moyes looks set to sign the Englishman in the next few weeks.

Scott Dann

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    STOKE ON TRENT, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 09:  Kenwyne Jones of Stoke in action with Scott Dann of Birmingham during the Barclays Premier League match between Stoke City and Birmingham City at the Britannia Stadium on November 9, 2010 in Stoke on Trent, England.
    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Name: Scott Dann

    Age: 24

    Club: Birmingham City

    Position: Centre-back

    Possible Destinations: Arsenal and Liverpool

    Projected Transfer Fee: £10 million

    With Birmingham City's relegation to The Championship, EPL sides will be looking to swoop for the club’s star players. Dann emerged as one half of a prolific backline, partnering fellow Englishman Roger Johnson.

    The centre-back earned six clean sheets for the club, before suffering a season-ending injury in January. Dann is a traditional no-nonsense defender with good aerial ability. The Englishman was a reliable presence at the back, showing toughness and strength in the tackle.

    Birmingham’s 24-year-old centre-back has been a long-term admirer of Liverpool. With the Reds losing out on Phil Jones to Manchester United, manager Kenny Dalglish could look to Dann as a viable option. The Englishman would bring great determination and spirited defending to the Merseysiders, as they fight for a fourth-place finish next year.

    Arsenal have also shown interest in signing the Birmingham defender. Manager Arsene Wenger is looking to bolster his defense, and Dann would be an excellent addition to the current squad.

Jermaine Jenas

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    LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 28: Jermaine Jenas of Tottenham Hotspur in action during the Barclays Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United at White Hart Lane on December 28, 2010 in London, England.  (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty
    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Name: Jermaine Jenas

    Age: 28

    Club: Tottenham

    Position: Central Midfielder

    Possible Destinations: Fenerbahce and Hamburg

    Projected Transfer Fee: £8 million

    Although Jenas may be the most recognized name on this list, he has recently been pushed to the periphery of English football. The midfielder was regarded as one of the top young talents in the country, but injuries have derailed his career at Tottenham. With the North London club recently signing Sandro and Rafael van der Vaart, Jenas has become surplus to requirements and a forgotten figure in British football.

    The Englishman is an athletic, box-to-box midfielder. Jenas may not be the most aggressive or tenacious player, but he provides endless running in the middle of the park. The Tottenham midfielder does well to get behind the ball defensively and arrive late into the box. In addition to his physical attributes, Jenas has good technical ability and composure on the ball.

    The central midfielder looks set on playing regular first-team football next season. Although he will not be joining a major English club during the summer, Fenerbahce and Hamburg have both shown serious interest in signing the £8 million-rated midfielder. The Turkish giants are in the market for an all-action midfielder, and former Chelsea sporting director Frank Arnesen is determined to bring more EPL talent to the Bundesliga.

James Tomkins

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    LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27:  James Tomkins of West Ham tackles Luis Suarez of Liverpool during the Barclays Premier League match between West Ham United and Liverpool at the Boleyn Ground on February 27, 2011 in London, England.  (Photo by Scott Heavey
    Scott Heavey/Getty Images

    Name: James Tomkins

    Age: 22

    Club: West Ham

    Position: Centre-back

    Possible Destinations: Arsenal, Tottenham and Liverpool

    Projected Transfer Fee: £5-8 million

    With West Ham’s relegation to The Championship, a number of the elite English clubs have shown interest in James Tomkins. The young Englishman has been an ever-present at the U-21 level for England, but has yet to earn his first international cap for the senior team. Tomkins has been solid for the Hammers in recent years, and looks to have the makings of a solid EPL centre-back.

    The Englishman boasts a rare combination of aerial strength and passing technique. Tomkins has a great leap, winning the majority of his aerial duels. In addition to his physical attributes, the West Ham centre-back has developed into a good ball-playing defender. Tomkins is tidy in possession, and spreads the play well from the backline.

    Although he does not have the toughness or grit of a stereotypical English centre-back, Tomkins has all the tools to play for a top club in the near future. Arsenal have stated their admiration for the player, as Wenger sees the Englishman as a cheaper defensive alternative. Tottenham and Liverpool are also in contention for the promising West Ham defender.

Jack Collison

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    DUBLIN, IRELAND - MAY 27:  Jack Collison of Wales in action during the Carling Nations Cup match between Northern Ireland and Wales at the Aviva Stadium on May 27, 2011 in Dublin, Ireland.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
    Julian Finney/Getty Images

    Name: Jack Collison

    Age: 22

    Club: West Ham

    Position: Central Midfielder

    Possible Destinations: Liverpool and Stoke City

    Projected Transfer Fee: £4 million

    Although injuries have hampered Collison's growth at West Ham, the Welshman is still a top-quality young British talent. The Hammers midfielder returned from a horrific injury towards the end of this season, and has been recalled to the Wales national team as well. Collison has fallen out of the spotlight with his extended absence. However, the Welshman has the talent to re-emerge as one of the best young midfielders in England.

    Collison has all the tools of a complete central midfielder. The West Ham star boasts excellent composure and skill on the ball. The Welshman completes a good percentage of his passes, and has an excellent long distance shot as well. Although Collison has solid technical skills, he provides great energy in the middle of the park as well. The Hammers starlet tracks back defensively and bursts forward to arrive late in the box, making him an all-action midfielder.

    With West Ham's relegation to The Championship, Collison has become a target for a few of England's top-flight clubs. Although Liverpool have just signed Englishman Jordan Henderson, the Reds have also been monitoring the Welsh midfielder's situation at Upton Park. Stoke have also shown serious interest in Collison, looking to capture the talented youngster for a bargain price.

Roger Johnson

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    BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MARCH 05:  Peter Odemwingie of West Bromich Albion is challenged by Roger Johnson of Birmingham City during the Barclays Premier League match between Birmingham City and West Bromwich Albion  on March 5, 2011 in Birmingham, England.
    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

    Name: Roger Johnson

    Age: 28

    Club: Birmingham City

    Position: Centre-back

    Possible Destinations: Arsenal, Blackburn, Liverpool and Tottenham

    Projected Transfer Fee: £10-14 million

    After an impressive season with relegated Birmingham City, Johnson has become a major target for a multitude of English clubs. The 28 year old centre-back has been touted as a future England international. Birmingham will be looking to get maximum value for the Englishman, as Johnson showed that he is a consistent and reliable EPL defender.

    The Birmingham centre-back earned nine clean sheets for the club, as part of a formidable partnership with Scott Dann. Johnson became the club’s clear defensive leader. The Englishman is a hard-working, tough-tackling centre-back with exceptional aerial ability.

    Johnson has been linked with Arsenal, Blackburn, Liverpool and Tottenham in recent weeks, as clubs look to lure the defender back to England’s top-flight. The Gunners see the Birmingham centre-back as an alternative to Samba and Cahill, while Liverpool and Tottenham are looking to bolster their respective defenses. Blackburn have recently emerged as possible contenders, as the Englishman could be a possible replacement for Christopher Samba at Blackburn if the captain leaves for the Emirates.

Connor Wickham

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    LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 25:  Connor Wickham of Ipswich Town in action during the Carling Cup Semi Final Second Leg match between Arsenal and Ipswich Town at Emirates Stadium on January 25, 2011 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
    Clive Mason/Getty Images

    Name: Connor Wickham

    Age: 18

    Club: Ipswich Town

    Position: Striker

    Possible Destinations: Arsenal and Liverpool

    Projected Transfer Fee: £12 million

    The Ipswich and England U-21 international has been dubbed "the new Alan Shearer," and one of England's future stars. Wickham has featured at all the international youth levels, and has the potential to become an elite EPL striker.

    The 18-year-old Englishman has the physical attributes to excel in England's top-flight. Standing at 6'3'', Wickham has the height and strength to cope with the EPL's physical style of play. The Ipswich striker uses his upper body strength well, rarely getting brushed off the ball. In addition to his impressive size, Wickham has a surprising turn of pace. Although the Englishman still needs to improve his technical ability, he boasts a powerful left-footed strike.

    Wickham's great potential and impressive physical attributes make him a top target for England's elite clubs. While the striker is still in his early developmental stages, English talent is in high-demand. The Ipswich target has impressed England U-21 manager Stuart Pearce and a number of top-flight clubs. Arsenal and Liverpool are the most likely destinations for the talented Wickham.

    The Ipswich starlet may not be a first-team regular for a few years, but he has the ability and potential to become a top-quality striker in the future.

James McCarthy

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    OLDHAM, ENGLAND - JULY 20:  James McCarthy of Wigan looks on during the pre season friendly match between Oldham Athletic and Wigan Athletic at Boundary Park on July 20, 2010 in Oldham, England.  (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)
    David Rogers/Getty Images

    Name: James McCarthy

    Age: 20

    Club: Wigan

    Position: Central Midfielder

    Possible Destinations: Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool

    Projected Transfer Fee: £15-20 million

    Although McCarthy chose to play internationally for the Republic of Ireland, he is still a British player. Born in Glasgow, Scotland, the Wigan star had the option to play for the Scottish national team. Even though he plays for a country outside of the United Kingdom, McCarthy qualifies as a lesser-known British footballer.

    The Wigan star has been sensational this season, earning rave reviews for his determined style of play in the middle of the pitch. McCarthy boasts exceptional tackling technique, breaking up opposition play and launching counters. The Republic of Ireland international shows good composure on the ball, connecting and combining with teammates well. Only 20 years of age, McCarthy has the potential and tools to become one of the top midfielders in English football.

    Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool have all shown serious interest in signing the Wigan midfielder. McCarthy has been a standout performer this season, and has the quality to excel in a top English side. If Cesc Fabregas finally makes his dream move to Barcelona, Wenger could turn to McCarthy as a more physical, defensive-minded midfield option to play alongside Jack Wilshere.

    Chelsea and Liverpool are other possible destinations, but it will be difficult for the Wigan star to find first-team football in their crowded midfields. McCarthy is still young, but he has the skill-set and intangibles of an elite British midfielder.

Matt Jarvis

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    WEST BROMWICH, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 20:  Matthew Jarvis of Wolverhampton Wanderers in action during the Barclays Premier League match between West Bromwich Albion and Wolverhampton Wanderers at The Hawthorns on February 20, 2011 in West Bromwich, England.
    Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

    Name: Matt Jarvis

    Age: 25

    Club: Wolverhampton Wanderers

    Position: Wingers

    Possible Destinations: Arsenal, Liverpool and Newcastle

    Projected Transfer Fee: £8 million

    Coming off a stellar season with Wolves, Jarvis has attracted interest from a few of England’s elite clubs. The English winger was in top form this year, earning his first international cap in March. Jarvis emerged as one of the top wide men in English football, playing a key role in Wolves’ successful relegation battle.

    The 5’7’’ Englishman boasts exceptional pace and quickness. Although a right-footed player, Jarvis primarily features on left for Wolves, where he can either cut inside or use his speed to race to the byline. The winger provides outstanding delivery from the flanks, emerging as one of the best crossers in England.

    Although Arsenal looks like the favorite to land Southampton youngster Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, the door is still open for Wenger to sign Jarvis. Liverpool and Newcastle are the main contenders for the Wolves winger. With the Reds losing out on Sylvain Marveaux, Jarvis could be seen as a strong and cost-efficient replacement.

    While Newcastle will be less likely to acquire the Wolves star following their capture of Marveaux, manager Alan Pardew would look to the Englishman as a successor to Jonas Gutierrez if the Argentine leaves this summer.